An invocation of the Seventeen Great Scholarly Adepts of Glorious Nalanda
PÄL NA LEN DÄ PAN CHEN CHU DUN GYI SOL DEB DÄ SUM SÄL JE CHE JA BA SHUG SO
INVOCATION OF THE SEVENTEEN GREAT LEARNED NALANDA SCHOLARS
By His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama
INVOCATION OF THE SEVENTEEN GREAT LEARNED NALANDA SCHOLARS
Illuminating the Threefold Faith: An invocation of the Seventeen Great Scholarly Adepts of Glorious Nalanda
- DRO LA PAN SHE THUB JE RAB TRUN PA
The God of Gods, arisen from the compassionate wish to benefit wandering beings,
PANG TOB KYOB PA CHOG NYE LHA YI LHA
Has attained transcendent protection, abandonment and realization,
TEN JUNG TAM GYI DRO NAM DREN DZA PA
And liberates sentient beings through teaching dependent arising.
THUB WANG MA WA NYI MAR GO CHAG TSAL
I bow my head to you, the Conqueror, Sun among Teachers.
GYAL YUM GONG DON THA TRAL DE NYI DON
I call to mind esteemed Nagarjuna, who, as prophesied, introduced
The Madhyamaka system, the excellent path, and who was skilled in clarifying
GYAL BA LUNG SHIN THEG CHOG U MA SOL
The meaning of suchness, free of extremes, the intention of the Mother of the Conquerors,
JE DZA LU DRUB SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
Through the profound logical presentation of dependent arising.
- DE SA THU WO KHA SHING DRUB PA CHOG
I call to mind the Bodhisattva Aryadeva,
CHI NANG DRUB THA GYAM TSO PA THAR SON
His principal spiritual son, peerlessly learned and accomplished,
LU DRUB SHUNG DZIN KUN GYI TSUG NOR PAL
Who traversed the ocean of Buddhist and other philosophical systems,
GYAL SA PHAG PA LHA LA SOL WA DEB
- Who is the glorious crowning jewel amongst all the holders of Nagarjuna’s teachings.
PHAG PA GONG PA TEN JUNG THAR THUG DON
I call to mind esteemed Buddhapalita,
TAG YO MING KYANG TSAM GYI SAB MO NA
Who clarified the ultimate meaning of dependent arising, the thought of the Superior,
SAL DZA DRUB PA CHOG GI SAR SHEG PA
The essential point of the profound, (existence as) mere designation and name
SANG GYA KYANG KYI SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
And who has ascended to the utmost state of accomplishment.
- DEN PA NGO PO KYE SOG THA KAG CHING
I call to mind Acharya Bhavaviveka,
TSA MA THUN NANG CHI DON SHE PA YI
Who introduced a philosophical system
DRUB THA SOL TO YONG DZOG PAN DI TA
That refuted such extremes as truly existent production
LOB PON LEG DAN JE LA SOL WA DEB
And accepted the shared perception of valid cognitions and external objects.
- TEN DREL KYEN NYI DI PA TSAM NYI KYI
I call to mind Chandrakirti, who promulgated the complete path of the Sutras and Tantras,
THA NYI SEL WA NANG TONG U MA TSUL
Who was skilled in expounding the profound and vast Middle Way system,
SAB GYA DOM KHA DO NGAG YONG DZOG LAM
In which appearance and emptiness eliminate the two extremes
GYA DZA DA WA DRAG PA SOL WA DEB
Through dependent arising and the merely conditional (nature of things).
- NGO TSAR MA JUNG NYING JE CHEN PO LAM
I call to mind the Bodhisattva Shantideva,
SAB DANG GYA CHE RIG TSUL NAM MANG GI
Who was skilled in teaching the host of fortunate disciples
KAL SANG DUL JE TSOG LA TON KHA PA
The truly marvelous path of great compassion
GYAL SA SHI WA LHA LA SOL WA DEB
With the versatile means and reasons of the profound and the vast.
- DUL JE KHAM SHIN NYI TONG U MA LAM
I call to mind the great abbot Shantarakshita,
SOL TO U TSA RIG TSUL JE KHA SHING
Who introduced the Middle Way to suit the disciples’ mental dispositions,
KHA WA JONG SU GYAL TEN PAL DZA PA
Was well versed in expounding the rationale of the Middle Way and valid cognition,
KHAN CHEN SHI WA TSO LA SOL WA DEB
And disseminated the teaching of the Conqueror in the Land of Snows.
- THA TREL U MA TA DANG SHI LHAG ZUNG
I call to mind the esteemed Kamalashila,
GOM RIM DO GYU SHIN DU LEG TRAL NA
Who thoroughly explained how to meditate systematically on the Middle Way thought free from extremes,
GANG JONG GYAL TAN TRUL ME SAL DZA PA
And the union of calm abiding and special insight according to the Sutras and Tantras,
PA MA NGANG TSUL SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
Flawlessly clarified the Conqueror’s doctrine in the Land of Snows.
- JAM PA JE SUNG THEG CHEN DE NO KUN
I call to mind the esteemed Asanga,
LEG PAR PEL KHA GYA CHEN LAM TON SHING
Who Maitreya inspired and looked after,
GYAL WA LUNG SHIN NAM RIG SHING TA SOL
Who was adept in disseminating all the Mahayana sets of discourses,
JE DZA THOG ME SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
Who revealed the vast path and as prophesied, blazed the trail of the Mind Only system.
- CHO NGON DE DUN NYI TONG SOL SUNG NA
I call to mind the esteemed Acharya Vasubhandu
CHE DO NAN RIG DRUB THA SAL DZA PA
Who, by maintaining the doubly empty system of the “Seven Treatises of Abhidharma,”
KUN KHYEN NYI PAR DRAG PA KHA PA CHOG
Clarified the philosophical theories of the Vaibhashikas, Sautrantikas and Vijnavadas,
LOB PON YIG NYEN SHAB SOL WA DEB
The foremost scholar, renowned as a second Omniscient One.
- THUB PA SHUNG LUG NGO TOB RIG PA YI
I call to mind the esteemed Dignaga,
TON CHIR TSA MA GO GYA LEG CHE NA
The logician who gave us the discerning eye of fine discrimination
NAM CHO LO MIG CHIN DZA TSA MA PA
By thoroughly opening a hundred epistemological doors
CHOG KYI LANG PO SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
To reveal the system of Buddha’s scriptures through the power of natural logic.
- CHI NANG TSA MA NA KUN LEG GONG SHING
I call to mind the esteemed Dharmakirti,
DO SEM SAB GYA LAM KUN RIG LAM NA
Who fathomed the vital points of Buddhist and others’ systems of knowledge,
NGE TER MA JUNG CHO TSUL DOM KHA PA
Granting conviction in the vast and profound paths of the Sautrantika and Chittamatra,
CHO KYI DRAG PA SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
And who was adept in expounding the marvelous ways of the Dharma.
- THOG ME KUM CHE LA ONG SHER CHIN DON
I call to mind the esteemed Vimuktisena,
YO ME THA TREL U MA SOL SHIN DU
Who lit the lamp illuminating the meaning of the Ornament (of Clear Realization)
GYAN GYI SHUNG DON NANG WA DRON ME BAR
In accordance with the Middle Way system, free from the extremes of existence and non-existence,
PHAG PA GROL DE SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
The meaning of the Perfection of Wisdom as it came from the Asanga brothers.
- YUM DON CHE LA GYAL WA LUNG TEN THOB
I call to mind the esteemed Haribhadra,
MI PHAM GON PO MAN NAG JI SHIN DU
Who clarified the three Mothers, the supreme Perfection of Wisdom scriptures,
YUM SUM SHER CHIN SHUNG CHOG SAL DZA PA
In line with Maitreyanath’s pith instructions,
LOB PON SEN GE SANG POR SOL WA DEB
And who the Conqueror prophesied would expound the meaning of the Mother.
- DUL BA BUM DE GONG DON LEG DU NA
I call to mind the esteemed Gunaprabha, excelling in stability and learning,
THAM CHA YO MA LUG SHIN SO SO THAR
Who integrated the intentions of a hundred thousand categories of Vinaya,
MA NOR LEG DOM TEN KHA CHOG GYUR PA
And in accordance with the Mulasarvastivadin system
YON TAN O KYI SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
Thoroughly and unmistakenly explained individual liberation.
- LAB SUM YON TAN NOR BU DZO LA WANG
I call to mind the esteemed Shakyaprabha, the ideal Vinaya holder,
DUL TEN DRI ME RING DU PHEL WA LA
Master of the treasure of the three precepts’ qualities,
GYA CHEN SHUNG DON LEG TREL DUL DZIN CHOG
Who, in order to ensure the longevity of the flawless Vinaya teaching,
SHAKYA O KYI SHAB LA SOL WA DEB
Thoroughly explained what the vast scriptures meant.
- THUB SUNG SAB GYA KHA SOL MA LU PA
I call to mind Jowo Atisha,
KYE BU SUM KYI LAM DU DOM DZA DE
The kind lord who caused the Conqueror’s teaching to flourish in the Land of Snows,
GANG JONG THUB TEN PEL WA DRIN CHEN JE
Who expounded in the paths of the three individuals
JO WO ATISHA LA SOL WA DEB
The doctrines of the vast and profound that are the complete teaching of the Conqueror.
- DE TAR DZAM LING GYAN GYUR KHA PA PHUL
Making such invocations with an unflinchingly pure mind
NGO TSAR LEG SHA JUNG NA CHOG NAM LA
To these exceedingly fine scholars, who are the ornaments for the world
MI CHE DANG WA YI KYI SOL TAB PA
And the source of stupendous, elegant teachings,
DAG GYU MING CHING DROL WAR JIN GYI LOB
May I be blessed that I may mature my mindstream and achieve liberation.
- SHI YI NA TSUL DEN NYI DON SHE PA
By understanding the meaning of the two truths, the way things exist,
DEN SHI KHOR WA JUG DOG JI SHIN NGE
We ascertain through the four truths how we arrive in and how we leave the cycle of existence.
TSA MA DRANG PA KYAB SUM DA PA TEN
Engendered by valid cognition our faith in the three refuges will be firm.
THAR LAM TSA WA TSUG PAR JIN GYI LOB
May I be blessed to establish the root of the path to liberation.
- DUG KUN NYER SHI THAR PA DON NYER BA
May I be blessed to perfect an uncontrived awakening mind of Bodhichitta
NGE JUNG LO DANG DRO NAM KYOB DO PA
Which is rooted in renunciation – the aspiration for liberation and
CHOG THA TUG PA NYING JE TSA WA CAN
The total purification of suffering and its source –
CHO MIN JANG SEM JONG PAR JIN GYI LOB
And that boundless compassion that wishes to protect wandering beings.
- SHING TA CHEN PO SHUNG GI DON NAM LA
May I be blessed to be able to develop a quick and easy conviction
THO SAM GOM PA PHA ROL CHIN PA DANG
About the profound points of all the paths of the Perfection of Wisdom and the Vajrayana
DOR JE THEG PA SAB NA LAM KUN LA
By listening to, contemplating and meditating
NGE PA DE LAG NYE PAR JIN GYI LOB
On the meaning of the commentaries of the great pioneers.
- KYE SHING KYE BAR LAB SUM DAN PA TEN
May I, in life after life, obtain the good basis (of a human life) possessing the three precepts
LEG THOB SHA DANG DRUB PA LUNG TOG TAN
And contribute to the doctrine as the great pioneers did,
DZIN CHING PEL LA SHING TA CHE NAM DANG
With respect to upholding and propagating
TZUNG PAR TAN LA JA WA JE PAR SHOG
The words and insights of the teachings through explanation and practice.
- DUL DE KUN TU THO SAM SHA DRUB KYI
May all religious assemblies be filled with noble sages and practitioners
JA BA DU DA LOG TSHO YONG PANG PA
Passing their time in hearing, contemplation and explanation
DAM PA KHA GRUB RAB TU PHEL WA YI
And having totally given up wrong livelihood,
DZAM LING SA CHEN TAG TU DZE GYUR CHIG
May the ground of this great world be adorned in this way.
- DE TU DO NGAG YONG DZOG SA LAM DRO
By such power may all the grounds and paths of the Sutras and Tantras be traversed
DON NYI LHUN DRUB NAM KHYEN GYAL WA YI
And by quickly achieving the state of an Omniscient Conqueror,
GO PHANG NYUR WA NYI DU THOB GYUR NA
Spontaneously fulfilling the two purposes,
NAM KHA JI SI DRO WA DON CHE SHOG
May I work for sentient beings as long as space remains.
Translated by Geshe Lakdor and edited by Jeremy Russell in Dharamsala and completed on 26th February 2002