Chanted Meditations (Pujas)
Chanted meditations, or pujas give us an opportunity to come together in prayer and to make praises and requests to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Using ancient prayers translated into English we receive the blessings, protection and guidance of the holy beings. We can make requests for ourselves or for others who need help or protection. These spiritual practices create a strong connection with the Buddhas, and help us purify our negativity and fill our mind with positive, healing energy. These meditations are open to everyone, though you might want to try one of the shorter ones first! People sit on chairs or on cushions on the floor.
This practice is the heart essence of Kadampa Buddhism. In the first part we visualize our Spiritual Guide as Je Tsongkhapa and make prayers and requests to purify negativity, accumulate merit and receive blessings. This prepares our mind for a twenty-minute meditation on the Lamrim or Stages of the Path to Enlightenment. After the meditation we make prayers to our Dharma Protector, Dorje Shugdän. Through this we can overcome obstacles to our practice and create favorable conditions so that we can nurture and increase our pure Dharma realizations. (1 hour)
This is a more extensive version of Heart Jewel in which we make prayers and requests to Je Tsongkhapa and our Dharma Protector, Dorje Shugdän. We make a special food offering known as a tsog offering to create a vast amount of positive energy for ourselves and others. We invite all the Buddhas and holy beings to come and enjoy a feast of great bliss and then we enjoy the food offering together. Please bring a food offering. (1 hour)
This is a special Guru yoga of Je Tsongkhapa in conjunction with Highest Yoga Tantra that is a preliminary practice for Vajrayana Mahamudra. The main practice is relying upon our Spiritual Guide as a Buddha and making praises and requests, but it also includes all the essential practices of the stages of the path, and training the mind, as well as both the generation stage and completion stage of Highest Yoga Tantra. By relying upon Je Tsongkhapa our compassion, wisdom and spiritual power naturally increase. This practice includes a tsog offering so please bring a food offering with you. (2 hours)
This monthly practice consists principally of prayers to our Dharma Protector, Dorje Shugdän. A Dharma Protector is an emanation of a Buddha or Bodhisattva whose main functions are to avert the inner and outer obstacles that prevent practitioners from attaining spiritual realizations, and to arrange all the necessary conditions for their practice. Dorje Shugdän always helps, guides, and protects pure and faithful practitioners by granting blessings, increasing their wisdom, fulfilling their wishes, and bestowing success on all their virtuous activities. This practice includes a tsog offering so please bring a food offering with you. (3 1/2 hours)
These pujas are occasionally on the schedule – please check the current calendar to see if these are occurring this month.
Tara is our holy, spiritual mother who helps and protects us in all our activities. In particular she helps us to deepen our understanding of Lamrim (the stages of the path to enlightenment). By offering praises and requests to Tara we increase our wisdom and compassion and come under the loving care and protection of an enlightened mother. Occasionally for special reasons we do 24 hour Tara practice, in which we recite these prayers every four hours for a twenty-four hour period. (1 hour)