The Seven Line Invocation of Guru Rinpoche
An Elixir of Immortality From Enlightened Intent
By Lama Rangbar Nyima Ozer
Namo Guru Padmakaraye
Although there is no ultimately stabilized maturity in my continuum that I can extol as out of the ordinary, due to a sincere request, I will offer a fraction of an explanation of the basic functions of the Seven Line prayer from my experience for those wishing to extract themselves from confused and cyclic modes of being.
To begin with, this ordinary mind is continuously distracted from the appearance of its own fundamental pure ground. How does this happen you may ask. Although there is not one iota of truth in the arising of phenomenon as a separated multiplicity, mind seizes upon appearances coloring them with the tainted lens of wants, rejections and bewilderment while fortifying these erroneous beliefs with labels. As if these self-inflicted distractions were not already a significant challenge to overcome, other beings also trapped by their own individuated grasping onto perceptions work to assure the reification of false appearances of our dualistic assignments so they feel justified in holding onto their delusions.
As a result of the ripening of the excellent fortune first set in motion by Lord Buddha the Rishi of the Shakya clan, combined with the needs of sentient beings to completely transcend the endless pain of sustained delusion, upon the passing of Lord Buddha Shakyamuni, Amitabha Buddha emanated a heart-ray resplendent with wisdom lights which penetrated through the total resonance of the Samboghakaya, which took form as the arising of the miraculous form we have come to call, Padmasambhava the Lotus Born Guru. The miraculous nature of his birth itself is indicative proof of his purity and transcendence from error in any and all senses.
This great being understood the infallible nature of that which appeared to be born of cause and that which was beyond cause and condition. Because of the unobstructed continuum he was manifesting then and now, he was not bound by localized intellectual constructs such as time and space or self-infatuated refence points. Guru Rinpoche understood perfectly how to assist beings trapped by their own immersion in confusion and as a result of this ability generated countless methods that could be applied by limitless migrators in Samsara. It is also due to this, that Guru Rinpcohe’s ability to read clairvoyantly through the three times and ten directions gave rise to numerous predictions and powerful methods which continue to arise as precise medicines for our world’s ills today.
Even during his own historic time, being flawlessly adept at navigating through the illusory appearances of obstacles and the like, he composed and gave rise to several prayers designed to invoke his unfathomable blessing stream without reference to time and space. Probably the most important and essentialized example of this is the Seven Line Prayer or invocation of Guru Rinpoche brought forth by the Dakinis themselves. The history of the initial appearance, use and detailed meaning of this prayer are available elsewhere in great detail in texts by several great Treasure revealers such as Karma Lingpa, Chogyur Lingpa and a host of others. For me to try to elaborate on these points would be like a child pointing into the sky and explaining where the light of the sun comes from and so I wish not to make a fool of myself when such accurate and pure material is so readily accessible.
Instead I intend to share what I have gathered within the practice of plowing of my own field of experiences born from following the instructions of many revered holy masters of our Ancient Lineage.
Whereas it was previously thought to be exclusively a matter of science fiction, many of us now speculate that time travel may one day be possible. The warp and weft of space and time’s fabric is now a common topic among the world’s living leaders in the field of physics. Although we may not yet be able to step into a small wooden box with dials and buttons and arrive in the past or future, there is now deep suspicion that it might in fact be possible on some level. For us faithful followers of Guru Padmasambhava, this is in fact a basic underlying principle of our daily practice of Guru Yoga.
Using the recitation of the Seven Line Prayer and utterance of Guru Padmasambhava’s mantra, the false constructs of delusions can be instantaneously or at least gradually eradicated. In the common language of both the general public and Buddhist practitioners alike, the Seven Lines we are talking about are called “The Seven Line Prayer to Guru Rinpoche” and his mantra are often referred to as “The Mantra of Guru Rinpoche” and so on. In fact, if understood properly, the Seven Line Invocation to the Guru when uttered by a practitioner with ordinary awareness and devotion, is in fact Guru Rinpoche himself inseparable from its utterance.
Because of this, this prayer, invocation or miraculous formula, however you may wish to label it, is none other than a clear and direct opening of the Heart-Mind of the Guru’s spontaneous presence of wisdom awareness and function of unobstructed compassion simultaneously. Considered by wise people to be the condensed essence of all Tantras and Mantras rolled into one prayer, a single utterance of the seven line invocation is minimally the equivalent of giving rise to Guru Rinpoche himself.
If this view of the prayer can be maintained even sporadically throughout any given practice session, the blessing stream is manifest without regard to any other obstructing or contributing factors. In simple terms, even if one only had mediocre faith in the recitation of the Seven Line Prayer, the positive downpour of blessings are unstoppable. It is this unique power of this all-pervasive template of complete enlightenment that makes it so appropriate for the challenges we now face on all levels, outer, inner and secret.
The Seven Line Prayer, is the one panacea, simple and easy to practice, which curtails the need for other elaborated practices while having the power to illuminate any darkness of the mind. It is difficult to think of any single more powerful antidotes to the deep sense of angst we are all experiencing these days.
Its radiant utterance purifies all corrupt and untruthful speech and overpowers conceited misleading speech. The wake of its instantaneous ripening causes ordinary appearances of suffering to arise as wisdom nectar and clears away the causes for future rebirths in confused existences.
Having been requested by a close Dharma brother, Daniel S., to say some words about the importance of reciting this prayer, these words are the form of my response. Moreover, based on the conditions we find ourselves coping with today and the advice of my own Guru, His Holiness Dungse Shenphen Dawa Rinpoche, I can safely say that the time to focus on such accumulations is squarely upon us. Regardless of if you adapt accumulations of the Seven Line Prayer exclusively or as a portion of your daily practice, or if you recite to benefit yourself, to benefit others or both; and regardless of my words being perfect or imperfect, such efforts will yield fruits beyond any other activity I can imagine.
Although such unfathomable declarations about the benefits of this prayer normally belong to the domain of realized masters, it is the ripening of my Guru’s blessings combined with unbending faith in Guru Rinpoche that allows me or even compels me to dare to make such proclamations. If I have offended any scholars or highly educated intellectual people, I apologize in advance for my child-like presentation of my delusions. Any error within my impure human speech are all my own, whereas any merit that may arise or has arisen from reading this, I dedicate to the transformation of all beings into the complete manifest display of the Guru’s fully ripened Four Kayas of Body, Speech, Mind, Qualities and Spontaneous Miraculous Activities.
This was written by an uneducated child of the Guru parroting the sentiments of those with actual realization. May benefit be realized somewhere and everywhere.