Latest Features

“Go Bananas” for Buddha: Devotion — Prostration, Praise and Prayers — the most essential practices for busy “part time” Buddhists. And — who is the deity?

"Go bananas for the Buddha, "is sage advice for any practitioner, new and advanced students alike. The great teacher Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche once described devotion in a talk on Tara: “The devotees of Tara, especially the devotees from great universities...

‘Outside Tradition and Scripture’ – Zen Buddhism: “If you meet the Buddha, kill him.”

Zen holds a special place in the heart and mind for many, perhaps because it is "seemingly" singular in its simplicity and elegance. From single-pointed zazen mindfulness — facing a blank wall — to mysterious cyphers called Koans — "What...

Vajrapani, the “Hand of Buddha” defeats the poisons : pride, anger, hate and jealousy

 Vajrapani's name means, literally, "Vajra Hand". He is one of the three great Bodhisattvas, together with Avalokiteshvara and Manjushri, who respectively represent "power of Buddha," Compassion of Buddha, and Wisdom of Buddha. He is not only important in Mahayana sutra,...

Buddhist Dharma Dates 2022: clearing the confusion on lunar calendars

Sacred lunar days 2022: why they're important, when and how to celebrate Buddha Days, Tsog Feasts, Puja Days in Tibetan, Mahayana, and Theravada Buddhist traditions Lunar calendars can be confusing — especially since there are three systems: lunisiderial, lunisolar, and...

Healing Parnashavari — Tara’s 20th emanation: specialist in Contagious Disease and COVID-19: How to practice her mantra and sadhana

"Tara dressed in leaves" is Parnashavari, the 20th emanation of Tara in the 21 Taras Praise.[3] Her name literally translates from Sanskrit to English as a "leaf-clad goddess" — a treasured and revered emanation of Tara relied upon to prevent...

Aspire to Tara’s splendid Turquoise Pure Land — for tree-huggers and environmentalists — a place to meditate on Oneness with Blissful Nature

For Tara's Buddhist devotees, we may aspire to go to Her Turquoise Pureland Yurlod Kurpa after our passing. Most Mahayana Buddhists think of Amitabha's splendid Western Paradise or Pureland Sukhavati, because of Amitabha's great vow — but Tara's Turquoise Pureland...

Metta meditation in times of crisis: “we all have a responsibility to exercise compassion” (Dalai Lama)

The Buddhist tradition of Metta meditation (or loving-kindness meditation) is one of the fundamental compassion-based practices that we can turn to in this time of crisis. This practice can help us to feel greater compassion for ourselves. It can reduce...

‘Outside Tradition and Scripture’ – Zen Buddhism: “If you meet the Buddha, kill him.”

Zen holds a special place in the heart and mind for many, perhaps because it is "seemingly" singular in its simplicity and elegance. From single-pointed zazen mindfulness — facing a blank wall — to mysterious cyphers called Koans — "What...

“I beat upon the Dharma Drum” — a simple way to calm the mind, remove stress and heal. Studies show drum meditation supports treatments of cancer, Parkinsons and depression.

"I beat upon the Dharma drum, announcing my search for Dharma in the four directions" — Lotus Sutra, Chapter 12 More than 2500 years ago, the drum was an important component of various Buddhist traditions. "In Buddha's time, the gong and...

“I beat upon the Dharma Drum” — a simple way to calm the mind, remove stress and heal. Studies show drum meditation supports treatments of cancer, Parkinsons and depression.

"I beat upon the Dharma drum, announcing my search for Dharma in the four directions" — Lotus Sutra, Chapter 12 More than 2500 years ago, the drum was an important component of various Buddhist traditions. "In Buddha's time, the gong and...

Science: Research Indicates Vajrayana Meditation Techniques Involving Deity Visualization Improve Cognitive Performance and May Be Promising For Degenerative Brain Disorders

Science, and in particular the medical profession, has long accepted the positive benefits of many forms or meditation. Many studies across decades of research have proven meditation is simply good for the body—and your health. A study from the National...

Peer-Reviewed Science of Meditation: There are At Least 10 Reasons to Meditate: From Boosting Your Immune System to Increasing Cognitive Function

Science and Buddhism are often harmonious. Buddha taught the benefits of meditation more than two-thousand years ago. Today, medical professionals, scientists and psychiatrists almost universally endorse the tangible benefits of meditation. All the mechanisms for realizing these specific benefits may...

Interview: Author of Allow Joy into Our Hearts, Chan Dharma Teacher Rebecca Li, Ph.D.

Rebecca Li, Ph.D. is a Chan Buddhist Dharma teacher and founder of the Chan Dharma Community. In her new book Allow Joy into Our Hearts she takes on the question of how to "find ways to allow joy, kindness, and...

Buddhist Practice: Practicing Joy in Difficult Times — Excerpt from Rebecca Li’s Allow Joy into Your Heart

IF YOU HAVE BEEN FOLLOWING THE NEWS THIS WEEK, the theme is: When are we going back to normal? When are we opening things up? As some places return to normal, there’s a lot of anxiety about when we will...

Book Excerpt: Gelug Mahamudra, Eloquent Speech of Manjushri, a commentary and practice guide on Sutra and Tantra Mahamudra by H.E. Zasep Tulku Rinpoche

The book, Gelug Mahamudra Eloquent Speech of Manjushri, is a rare commentary and practice guide in English, written for Western Buddhist students. Why is Mahamudra an advanced and special practice? Rinpoche explains: "Mahamudra meditation is awareness and understanding of the...

Virtuous offerings to the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha, offered with “Pleasant Mind” have more merit than a mountain of jewels

Virtuous offerings to the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha — the Three Jewels — are always meritorious — but how those offerings were obtained matters more than their tangible value. Offering with a "pleasant mind" said the Buddha is the most...

Fearless Buddhist: overcoming fear and becoming Gesar, : How to overcome fear in uncertain times, according to Pali Sutta, Mahayana Sutra and Tantra

Many of Buddha's teachings focus directly on overcoming our fears. In fact, when Buddha sat under the Bodhi tree to meditate on Enlightenment, he wrestled with Mara, the personification of fear. The source of fear Most of our fear and...

In Buddhas Words … NOT in Buddha’s Words Series. About 50 Percent of Online Quotes Attributed to Buddha are Actual

In Buddhas Words ... NOT in Buddha's Words. We all love inspirational quotes. They're especially nice as visual memes or illustrated quotes online, especially in Facebook posts. But how many are real. Our initial run at the top nine quotes...

Chod practice: offering yourself to all beings, the ultimate expression of bodhichitta

The vivid and visceral imagery of Chod Practice — where you visualize offering your own body to all sentient beings, chopped up into grisly bits, and presented in a human skull — can lead to extreme misunderstanding. Teachings such as...

Fearless Buddhist: overcoming fear and becoming Gesar, : How to overcome fear in uncertain times, according to Pali Sutta, Mahayana Sutra and Tantra

Many of Buddha's teachings focus directly on overcoming our fears. In fact, when Buddha sat under the Bodhi tree to meditate on Enlightenment, he wrestled with Mara, the personification of fear. The source of fear Most of our fear and...

“Go Bananas” for Buddha: Devotion — Prostration, Praise and Prayers — the most essential practices for busy “part time” Buddhists. And — who is the deity?

"Go bananas for the Buddha, "is sage advice for any practitioner, new and advanced students alike. The great teacher Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche once described devotion in a talk on Tara: “The devotees of Tara, especially the devotees from great universities...

In Buddhas Words … NOT in Buddha’s Words Series. About 50 Percent of Online Quotes Attributed to Buddha are Actual

In Buddhas Words ... NOT in Buddha's Words. We all love inspirational quotes. They're especially nice as visual memes or illustrated quotes online, especially in Facebook posts. But how many are real. Our initial run at the top nine quotes...

In Buddhas Words: “The person who clings to nothing of the past, present and future…” #InBuddhasWords

“The person who clings to nothing of the past, present and future, who has no attachment and holds on to nothing — that person, I call a Holy Person.”  — The Buddha Cited from Dhammapada 421 As with all Dhammapada...

In Buddha’s Words: “He who is possessed by constant virtue…” Path of Purification #inBuddhasWords

In the third of our quotable quotes  (#inBuddhasWords) — verified quotes with citations to Sutra — we draw from the Vissuddhi-magga, Path of Purification (S I 53): 
He who is possessed of constant virtue, Who has understanding, and is concentrated,...

Chittamani Tara (Cittamani)- the “Mind Jewel” Green Tara, an approachable and appealing Highest Yoga Anuttara practice – one of the main practices of many great Gelug teachers

Many Tara practitioners wonder why there are so many Taras: 21 Taras, 108 Taras, 1008 Taras — and more. Peaceful Taras. Motherly Taras. Green, White, Black, Blue, Red, Yellow, Gold, Orange Taras. And Taras in all four of the levels...

Mindfulness of Feelings Meditation: Overcoming Negative Feelings and Using Discriminating Alertness of Feelings in Your Practice: Mahamudra Teachings

"If You Don't Feel Anything, It Can Be a Problem" "Feelings are part of us," said Venerable Zasep Tulku Rinpoche, during a mini-retreat on Mahamudra and "mindfulness of feelings" in Owen Sound. "It's part of our life. Because we are...

The Foundation Practice of Prostrations: Humble Bow, a Method to Connect with Buddha Nature; the Psychology of Buddhist Prostrations

Psychologically, in modern times, we resist the concept of the bow or prostration. It is considered demeaning. Even the very idea of "bowing" causes our pride to flare up. This is, in fact, its main purpose, at least as a...

‘Outside Tradition and Scripture’ – Zen Buddhism: “If you meet the Buddha, kill him.”

Zen holds a special place in the heart and mind for many, perhaps because it is "seemingly" singular in its simplicity and elegance. From single-pointed zazen mindfulness — facing a blank wall — to mysterious cyphers called Koans — "What...

The Foundation Practice of Prostrations: Humble Bow, a Method to Connect with Buddha Nature; the Psychology of Buddhist Prostrations

Psychologically, in modern times, we resist the concept of the bow or prostration. It is considered demeaning. Even the very idea of "bowing" causes our pride to flare up. This is, in fact, its main purpose, at least as a...

“Dharma in motion”: Buddhism, Vajrayana Buddhist Tantra and Zen have as much in common with martial arts as religion?

Premise: Buddhism, Vajrayana Tantra and Zen have as much in common with martial arts as it does with religion. Second Premise: Martial arts skills are helpful to meditators and helps develop practice discipline. That may seem like an absurd or...

“One Yidam to focus them all and in emptiness transform them”: Yidam as a “means of accomplishment”

My favorite metaphor for Yidams is the Lord of the Rings. Really? How does that work, you ask? Having fun with Tolkien's verse, "one ring to rule them all...": One Yidam to focus them all, One Yidam to manifest all,...

Chod practice: offering yourself to all beings, the ultimate expression of bodhichitta

The vivid and visceral imagery of Chod Practice — where you visualize offering your own body to all sentient beings, chopped up into grisly bits, and presented in a human skull — can lead to extreme misunderstanding. Teachings such as...

Vajrapani, the “Hand of Buddha” defeats the poisons : pride, anger, hate and jealousy

 Vajrapani's name means, literally, "Vajra Hand". He is one of the three great Bodhisattvas, together with Avalokiteshvara and Manjushri, who respectively represent "power of Buddha," Compassion of Buddha, and Wisdom of Buddha. He is not only important in Mahayana sutra,...

Healing Parnashavari — Tara’s 20th emanation: specialist in Contagious Disease and COVID-19: How to practice her mantra and sadhana

"Tara dressed in leaves" is Parnashavari, the 20th emanation of Tara in the 21 Taras Praise.[3] Her name literally translates from Sanskrit to English as a "leaf-clad goddess" — a treasured and revered emanation of Tara relied upon to prevent...

Aspire to Tara’s splendid Turquoise Pure Land — for tree-huggers and environmentalists — a place to meditate on Oneness with Blissful Nature

For Tara's Buddhist devotees, we may aspire to go to Her Turquoise Pureland Yurlod Kurpa after our passing. Most Mahayana Buddhists think of Amitabha's splendid Western Paradise or Pureland Sukhavati, because of Amitabha's great vow — but Tara's Turquoise Pureland...

Chittamani Tara (Cittamani)- the “Mind Jewel” Green Tara, an approachable and appealing Highest Yoga Anuttara practice – one of the main practices of many great Gelug teachers

Many Tara practitioners wonder why there are so many Taras: 21 Taras, 108 Taras, 1008 Taras — and more. Peaceful Taras. Motherly Taras. Green, White, Black, Blue, Red, Yellow, Gold, Orange Taras. And Taras in all four of the levels...
Buddha Weekly’s Special Section

Tara, Mother of all Buddhas

tara-200
Loving face of the Mother of All Buddhas Green Tara. Detail from art by Ben Christian.
Karma Mother

How does Tara Help?

Tara, like any Mother, is ready to jump to our aid, even in mundane areas of life. She is the “practical Buddha” — the “Karma Mother” — the Buddha most active in our lives. Her Sanskrit name translates as “a star by which to navigate” — and like a star, she is always with us whenever we look for her.

Tara 6 Tara Victorious Over Three Worlds Trailokya Vijaya Tara.
Tara on YouTube

21 Taras Mantra Video Playlist

An entire playlist of every one of the mantras for the 21 Taras. Don't miss the amazing Tara mantra chanting of Yoko Dharma for the each Tara of the 21 Taras according to Surya Gupta lineage. One video with many repetitions and visualized images for each Tara. The final video is the English-translated 21 Praises to Tara sung in English.