Thursday, 12 January 2006

Kalachakra: 25 modes or vows of conduct for attainment of Budhicitta

Syed Akbar
Amaravathi, Jan 12:  The dusty village of Amaravathi on the banks of the river Krishna woke up to the empowerment hymns of the Kalachakra after a gap of  nearly two millennia and two centuries as the 14th Dalai Lama on Thursday began the ritual prayers to initiate thousands of his followers into the Buddhist “Wheel of Time”. 
The Dalai Lama administered to his disciples 25 modes or vows of conduct as part of the preparatory ritual to attain the Budhicitta, which is attainment of realization of emptiness and compassion. He also launched the six-stage preparation of disciples to help them through an inner initiation empowering them to visualise themselves as Kalachakra in union with his consort Viswamata. 
After the disciples took the bodhisattva and tantric vows, Dalai Lama blessed their body, speech and mind. Each disciple was asked to cast a tooth prick into a small mandala to determine his or her tathagata lineage. The Dalai Lama, who took the role of the guru, gave the disciples consecrated water for three purificatory sips. It was followed by the presentation of red protection thread and two sheaves of Kusha grass. The disciples were then asked to renounce samsara and generate enthusiasm for tantric practice. 
With the initial preparation over for the Kalachakra empowerment, the final stage of actual empowerment will begin on Friday. It will conclude on January 16 with the dismantling of the sand mandala, the medium of spiritual energy and empowerment. 
The present Dalai Lama is the only Buddhist spiritual leader after Shakyamuni Buddha to have delivered the Kalachakra empowerment from the banks of the river Krishna in Amaravathi since the birth of Buddhism more than two millennia ago. On the first occasion the Buddha himself manifested in the form of Kalachakra before King Suchandra who had sought the Kalachakra initiation. This time the Dalai Lama played the role of the Guru. 
The 25 modes of conduct the Dalai Lama put forth before the disciples relate to five abandonment, five misdeeds, five murders, five angers and five attachments. 
The disciples took the vow not to kill other beings, tell lies to deceive others, sexual misconduct, steal others' belongings, drink alcohol, bet on games, wrongly acquired food, gossip and read meaningless writings, make sacrifices for ancestors, make bloody sacrifices and perform barbaric practices such as burning five fires on body, kill cattle, children, women, men, destroy stupas and bases of the exalted body speech and mind. The five angers are malicious thoughts towards, Vajra friends, the Vajra master, the Buddha, an assembly of four fully ordained monks, and the abbots and disciples while the five attachments are to visible forms, sound, odours, tastes and tangible objects. 

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