The Confession Practice of Vajrasattva
Rinpoche is going to tell us how to meditate on Vajrasattva. First we need to
know how to visualize. We should sit with legs crossed and establish mindfulness.
Place your hand in the vajra mudra., press the left nostril and exhale through
the right. Then press the right nostril and exhale through the left. Imagine that
you are purifying all ignorance as you breathe out and that you are getting the
blessings of all the buddhas as you breathe in. Then rest the mind until you relax.
It would be beneficial if you do this before reciting the opening prayers each
day. Then think about bodhicitta, as we discussed yesterday. Think that to benefit
all sentient beings, we need to achieve enlightenment. And to do this, we need
to practice Vajrasattva. Shamatha is training the mind to remain on the object
you wish it to. Vajrasattva requires this concentration, so it is a kind of shamatha
practice. There are many ways to do shamatha meditation. All samsaric suffering
arises from thinking of the self, as in I need this or that. Buddhas, instead
of thinking of themselves, think of the suffering of others. We need to view all
beings with equanimity. When we breathe out imagine you are breathing out your
happiness and when you breathe in, imagine you are breathing in the sufferings
of all sentient beings. We should cultivate the attitude that others are more
important than ourselves. So when we meditate , we should first establish the
base of bodhicitta. Then on this base we can achieve enlightenment. Without this
base, we could not. Not only Buddhism, but other religions cultivate bodhicitta.
attain enlightenment, we must purify all the obstacles and stains. To do this,
we practice Vajrasattva. Vajrasattva made the aspiration that all who repeat his
name should be purified of their stains. That is why we meditate on Vajrasattva
to purify our obstacles. Stains of afflictive emotion create the obstacle to become
enlightened as an arhat. Stains of mental obscurations create the obstacle to
omniscience. Vajrasattva can remove both of these.
The practice of Vajrasattva
uses four powers. The first power is the outer visualization of Vajrasattva. Visualize
a white lotus atop your head. The root of the lotus is in your central channel.
The inside of the lotus is red. Atop the lotus is a moon disk. And atop the moon
disk is a white HUM, radiating light. With a pure mind, we should make an aspiration
prayer to Vajrasattva from our heart. Then we generate loving kindness and compassion
and the HUM changes to Vajrasattva in union with his consort, who is holding a
knife. Both beings are white. When we do the visualization, think that your root
lama is appearing in the form of Vajrasattva. So this is visualization, the first
The second power is the power of regret or remorse. It is regretting
the negative deeds one has done in the past. For example, if we drink poison by
mistake, we would sincerely regret it and be willing to do anything to get the
antidote. We should have this same urgency towards our misdeeds. So next in the
practice, we should recall our negative deeds and make confession prayer to Vajrasattva
with sincere regret. We should regret and confess all the negative actions we
recall in this life. Without hiding our negative actions, we should confess them
all, or otherwise they would not be purified. We may think that no one has seen
our misdeeds, but they have been seen by the Buddhas and bodhisattvas. We should
remember the time and date if possible and have the conviction one will not repeat
them again. All sentient beings are buddhas potentially. The only difference is
our negativities and obscurations. To purify them, we practice confession to Vajrasattva.
So then we should think I will confess every negative action today.
power is the power of the commitment or vow. It is the promise not to repeat the
action again. Realizing that non-virtuous actions lead to bad karma, one vows
not to repeat them. We think that we will not repeat the non-virtuous action,
even at the cost of one's life. It is not enough to say this with one's mouth,
it needs to come from the bottom of one's heart. So thinking this way, we strictly
keep this commitment. The commitment needs to be very powerful, thinking that
one will not commit the action even if someone threatens to kill us. Reviewing
each of the ten non-virtuous actions, we should make a commitment not to repeat
The fourth power is the inner visualization. Visualize a moon disk inside
Vajrasattva's heart. Atop it is a white HUM. Circling it clockwise in a spiral
is the hundred syllable mantra, the letters upright on the moon disk. We recite
the mantra and through its power a nectar like white milk drips from the syllables.
The white nectar fills Vajrasattva's body and then it fills the body of the consort.
The milk drops from the lotus flower into its root. From the root, it fills the
central channel, and from the central channel, it fills our body. Visualize that
it purifies all our negativities and diseases which are then washed out of our
body. If we are possessed by spirits, think that they are expelled in the form
of worms. Visualize that the negativities are expelled through the anus into a
crack in the ground. and that they enter the mouth of a bull. Then visualize that
the the bull feels satisfied by these negativities. Through this, think that the
debts we owe to others from previous lives are being repaid. Then we should visualize
our bodies are as clear as glass. Visualize your central channel which goes from
the top of your head to the central place. There are 32 channels in your head,
16 in throat, 8 at heart, 62 channels at your navel branching from the central
channel. The nectar has filled all the channels, bringing happiness.
have discussed the four powers. Whenever we practice Vajrasattva meditation, these
four powers must be applied. If they are not, the meditation will not be successful.
Just as when we want to drink tea, wishing to have tea is not enough. We need
to make a fire, boil the water, add the tea, and add sugar or milk.
make prayers to Vajrasattva, saying whatever wrong doing I have done through ignorance,
I confess and I vow no to repeat them again. Think that Vajrasattva is satisfied
by this prayer and blesses us. Then Vajrasattva and his consort dissolves into
us and we become Vajrasattva. Think that we are really, truly, Vajrasattva. Have
confidence in this. Inside ourselves is a moon disk with a white syllable OM.
In front of it is a white HUM, to the right is a BENDZRA colored yellow, behind
it is a red SA, and to the left is a blue TO. From these syllables, rainbow colored
light radiates to the buddhas of the ten directions. The light carries all kinds
of offerings, such as flowers and fruit to the buddhas and returns, carrying the
blessings of the buddhas.
Again the light radiates to all sentient beings,
purifying their negativities. Then all beings become Vajrasattva too. We should
see and respect them as Vajrasattva. All external objects are purified and become
the pure land. Whatever sound we hear become the teaching of Vajrasattva. Whatever
thought arise in our minds is transformed into the bodhisattva.
So now Rimpoche
will explain how to do the concluding prayers. By thinking that all beings have
become Vajrasattva, oneself is also truly Vajrasattva. Our form dissolves into
the heart. That dissolves into the HUM. The HUM dissolves from the bottom to the
dot at the top. Then relax your mind When thoughts arise again, visualize Vajrasattva
in the sky in front of you. Whatever good result one gets, one dedicates to all
sentient beings. Vow to liberate all sentient beings, not leaving one behind.
Dedicating in this way, the merit of the practice is increased and made safe from
Even when you are walking, think Vajrasattva is on your
left shoulder and whatever you do will be successful. Whatever you eat, first
offer your food to Vajrasattva. Visualize Vajrasattva as you fall asleep. When
you wake, visualize him again. By visualizing in this way all the time, when you
die, your practice will be meaningful. To purify stains, there is no better way
than the practice of Vajrasattva. This completes the teaching. You all probably
already know the practice and I am teaching just as a reminder. Even though we
don't wish to, we do negative actions every day. That is why it is important to
do the practice of Vajrasattva and why it is beneficial. It will be helpful to
your other meditations. The main point of meditation is to hold the mind and then
purify it. That is why Vajrasattva is important.