Latest Features

9 ways Buddha taught us to transform anger — and put an end to negative cycles

Why do we meditate on impermanence? Why does Buddha speak so often in Sutras, on the "poison" of anger? Why do we see so many "angry" or even demonic Enlightened Buddhas in Mahayana and Vajrayana? In this feature, we discuss...
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Purify karma, heal illness, increase lifespan and avert calamities with Usnisa Vijaya Dharani Sutra and Mantra

Recitation of the Usnisa Vijaya Dharani Sutra and Mantra, and its contemplation, is reputed to help during troubled and violent times. The Dharani, according to Buddha,  can heal disease, lengthen life and purify karma for those with faith. It is...
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“Means of Accomplishing”: Sadhanas, the secret sauce recipe of Vajrayana Buddhism — the ingredients that make it effective, and how to embrace its elegant formulas

Sadhanas are not just sacred Dharma texts, held up as venerable sacred texts — in Vajrayana they are (metaphorically) the recipes to successful Buddhist realizations. As with a chef in the kitchen, you don’t have to use the recipe —...
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Theta brainwaves in meditation for health and cognition benefits, and how to achieve through mindfulness, repetition, sound, visualization, mantra

Five key meditation methods can provide signicant health and cognitive benefits by inducing "Theta brainwaves."  — according to numerous studies. Theta is associated with "ideas without censorship" or "ideation" mind mode [2]. It is also one of the secrets to...
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Peacemaking Buddhism: importance of Ahimsa “Non-Harm” in Buddhism — “Nonviolence is the weapon of the strong.”

“Monks, even if bandits were to sever you savagely limb by limb with a two-handle saw, he who gave rise to a mind of hate towards them would not be carrying out my teaching” — Shakyamuni Buddha [4] By guest...
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How does Vajrayana visualization generate Tummo body heat, heal, and help us advance in Buddhist realizations?

Can Vajrayana tummo practice really generate body heat? Can deity practice actually heal? Are Deities real? If they are real, why do we have to visualize them? Why do we imagine deities at all? What is the process that allows...
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Ten confirmed health and wellness benefits of meditation: the science of mindfulness, with 17 cited research studies

Buddha taught the many benefits of meditation more than 2500 years ago — in the Satipatthana Sutta and others — and modern medical science confirms and reinforces those benefits in study after study. In this feature, we cite 17 sources of...
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Mind-space, it’s all we need. Meditation quiets the mind, even if you can’t find a quiet space. Buddha’s advice “I am silent.”

According to Sutra, after Buddha was Enlightened under the Bodhi tree, on a full moon day in May, he — kept silent. For an entire week, he didn't speak a single word. According to the most colorful stories of this...
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Mahamudra, the “Meditation of Openness”: no roof, no wall, no floor, nothing to obscure openness — retreating into your own mind

Mahamudra retreats are famous for refreshing simplicity — and, of course, jaw-dropping depth. You can think of it as Buddhist Retreat where we "retreat into our own mind." Whether we meditate in a cave, or our bedroom is irrelevant. We...
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Ten confirmed health and wellness benefits of meditation: the science of mindfulness, with 17 cited research studies

Buddha taught the many benefits of meditation more than 2500 years ago — in the Satipatthana Sutta and others — and modern medical science confirms and reinforces those benefits in study after study. In this feature, we cite 17 sources of...
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Dependent Co-Arising Answers Most Arguments with Impeccable Logic: The Great Causes Discourse Maha-nidana Sutta

In almost any "Buddhist" philosophical argument — for instance, "why should I meditate?" or "Is there a soul?" or "what happens after death?" or even, "what is the true nature of self?" — the impeccable logic of Dependent Co-Arising is...
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The observer conundrum in Buddhism and Quantum Physics: koans, erasers, soul-not-soul, and endless cycles of time

"Emptiness is form. Form is Emptiness" — Buddhism "Reality doesn’t exist unless we are looking at it" — Quantum Physics "The bridge flows, the water is motionless. Why?" — Zen Koan "If you are not completely confused by quantum mechanics,...
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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...
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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...
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Book Excerpt: Gelug Mahamudra, Eloquent Speech of Manjushri, a commentary and practice guide on Sutra and Tantra Mahamudra by Ven. 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...
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Why happiness and laughter are actual Buddhist teachings. The Sutra on Happiness, the Tathagata’s teaching “This is the great happiness!”

We often see monks of all Buddhist traditions laughing. Rinpoche's, monks, nuns, teachers, the Dalai Lama — they all have a ready belly laugh. Are they just happy? Or, is happiness itself, the teaching? In the "Sutra on Happiness" Shakyamuni...
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Commentary Heart Sutra — Most Famous of the Perfection of Wisdom Sutras in Buddhism: Form is Emptiness, Emptiness is Form

Introduction The Heart Sutra is the most famous of what are called the Perfection of Wisdom Sutras in Buddhism. These were written down sometime around the first century AD, and so there was a period of about five hundred years...
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Ehipassiko: encouraging investigation — Buddha taught logic to give us confidence in Dharma — not perpetual doubt

Buddha didn’t endorse a perpetual pursuit of knowledge, to the point of creating doubt — but he did teach the path of logic and investigation. The goal of an inquiring mind is discriminating wisdom — not perpetual doubt. Even when...
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Ehipassiko: encouraging investigation — Buddha taught logic to give us confidence in Dharma — not perpetual doubt

Buddha didn’t endorse a perpetual pursuit of knowledge, to the point of creating doubt — but he did teach the path of logic and investigation. The goal of an inquiring mind is discriminating wisdom — not perpetual doubt. Even when...
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Mahamudra, the “Meditation of Openness”: no roof, no wall, no floor, nothing to obscure openness — retreating into your own mind

Mahamudra retreats are famous for refreshing simplicity — and, of course, jaw-dropping depth. You can think of it as Buddhist Retreat where we "retreat into our own mind." Whether we meditate in a cave, or our bedroom is irrelevant. We...
Read More

Enlightenment in one lifetime? Guru Rinpoche Padmsambhava explains what it takes. Practice, discipline, and more practice!

What was Guru Rinpoche's advice to his beloved consort disciple Lady Tsogyal on how to achieve enlightenment in this very lifetime? Seclusion, discipline, hard work, and the guru are among the most important. What advice would he have for us...
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Member Ad-Free Video: 10 Protections of Buddha Amitabha with chanted Amituofo 南無阿彌陀佛

As a member thank you, please enjoy this ad-free video focused on the benefits of the Pureland Buddhism practice of chanting the name and praise of Amitabha Buddha. Following the introduction of benefits is a wonderful traditional chanting of Amituofo...
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Member Ad-Free Video: Medicine Buddha Mantra wonderfully sung by Yoko Dharma with Meditative Buddha images

As a member thank you, please enjoy the Medicine Buddha mantras sung by the amazing Yoko Dharma with gorgeous Medicine Buddha images for meditative reflection and healing. Although our videos are available to all on Youtube and on Buddha Weekly,...
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Member Ad-free Video: 5 Wisdom Dakinis Mantra sung by Yoko Dharma!

As a member thank you, please enjoy the 5 Wisdom Dakinis mantras and visualization, sung by the amazing Yoko Dharma! Although our videos are available to all on Youtube and on Buddha Weekly, production costs are supported partially by advertising....
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Sacred outlook – seeing beyond ordinary perception in modern culture and American Buddhism

‘Beware of confining yourself to a particular belief and denying all else, for much good would elude you – indeed, the knowledge of reality would elude you.  Be in yourself for all forms of belief, for God (Truth) is too...
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Emptiness and Shunyata: What the Teachers Say About Emptiness: Removing “Lazy Nihilism” and “How Deep the Rabbit Hole goes”

What do big moons, lazy nihilists and rabbit holes have to do with Shunyata? Yesterday I read a feature on Space.com which became the inspiration of this feature: "The 'Big Moon' Illusion May All Be in Your Head," by Joe Rao. This...
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Guanyin: “Most Widely Beloved Buddhist Divinity”; Devotion to the 33 Forms of Compassion and Love

March 21 2022 is Guanyin's Birthday! Guanyin is often referred to as the "most widely beloved Buddhist Divinity."[2] Why? Because Her love is unconditional, all-embracing — with all 1000 arms! — and She will never cease her merciful activity until...
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Buddhism has Nothing to do with Nihilism and everything to do with Experiencing; Why “Emptiness” and “Nothingness” are poor translations of Shunyata

Emptiness, Nothingness or Voidness, as English translations for Shunyata are unfortunate — and entirely misleading. To paraphrase the Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh: "Emptiness means empty of self — but in the fullness of everything else... it is because of...
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Emptiness and Shunyata: What the Teachers Say About Emptiness: Removing “Lazy Nihilism” and “How Deep the Rabbit Hole goes”

What do big moons, lazy nihilists and rabbit holes have to do with Shunyata? Yesterday I read a feature on Space.com which became the inspiration of this feature: "The 'Big Moon' Illusion May All Be in Your Head," by Joe Rao. This...
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Visualization Activates the Mind; Mindfulness Stills the Mind — Which is Right for Your Buddhist Practice?

The great Lama Yeshe said: "Our problem is that inside us there is a mind going, 'Impossible, impossible, impossible. I can't, I can't, I can't, I can't' ... Human beings have great potential; they can do anything. The power of...
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“Awaken the seeds of our innate wisdom” or Buddha Nature — embodied in the Yidam: “Conscious realism” and the profound Vajrayana

Buddhism speaks in terms of "Innate Enlightened Potential" or "Buddha Nature". Cognitive Science speaks in terms of "Unified Single Mind." Emptiness, or Shunyata, is also a Oneness perception of reality. Removing "ego" from our perception results in Oneness (Emptiness) which...
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Embracing the visual and all the senses in Vajrayana and Tantra is designed to transform the ten poisons — especially attachments and cravings — skillful means to realizations

The symbolism of Vajrayana spans every facet of life — and imagination — from the mundane, to love-making, to demon-slaying, to wrathful conquering. Every aspect of practice is expressed in visualization — in the vast expanse of imagination — rather...
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Tara the Windy Liberator, the Mother, the Activity Heroine: “Green Tara functions throughout our world” the activity of all the Enlightened Ones

Green Tara is famous for her windy activity — faster than the fiercest hurricane — sweeping to the rescue of sentient beings. In Vajrayana Buddhism, Female Buddhas represent Wisdom. Tara represents the unique and awesome intersection of Activity and Wisdom....
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Tara the Windy Liberator, the Mother, the Activity Heroine: “Green Tara functions throughout our world” the activity of all the Enlightened Ones

Green Tara is famous for her windy activity — faster than the fiercest hurricane — sweeping to the rescue of sentient beings. In Vajrayana Buddhism, Female Buddhas represent Wisdom. Tara represents the unique and awesome intersection of Activity and Wisdom....
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Green Tara’s nourishing, caring, mother-earth hands: honoring Tara of the Khadira Fragrant Forest

We can take inspiration from Green Tara's example to be more mindful of our planet and all its creatures every day of the year. We can use her nourishing, caring hands as a reminder to treat the earth with respect,...
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TARA DAY in 2022 — Puja and mantra practices to bring the swift saving and healing activity of Tara into your life

HAPPY TARA DAY! Every day is Tara day, although typically we celebrate especially on the eighth day of the lunar month  —  May 9, 2022 this month — is auspicious for Tara practice. The second auspicious day for Tara Puja...
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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.