"However many holy words you read, however many you speak, what good will they do you if you do not act upon them?" - Buddha
Prayers in Buddhism encapsulate the wisdom of the Buddhist view of reality in verse form. These prayers remind us to think about and orient ourselves toward what's really important.
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Refuge and Heart of Awakening Prayer
A quintessential prayer of Mahayana Buddhism, this prayer affirms the basic view that an orientation toward the spiritual aspect of life is the only reliable source of peace, and that our efforts to embody wisdom ultimately benefit everyone.
In the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha
I take refuge from now until enlightenment.
By my practice of giving and the other perfections
May I become a Buddha for the benefit of all beings.
The Four Immeasurables
A recitation that reminds us to expand our awareness and compassionate understanding to all people, plants, animals, and beings everywhere, whose happiness is inextricably linked to our own.
May all beings have happiness and the causes of happiness;
May all beings be free from suffering and the causes of suffering;
May all beings never be separate from the excellent happiness which is without sorrow;
May all beings be free of attachment to dear ones and aversion to others and live in great equanimity.
Heart of Awakening Prayer
A prayer for the continued flourishing of wisdom and compassion in the hearts of beings.
The Awakened Heart is precious;
May it arise in those who have not cultivated it;
In those who have cultivated it, may it never diminish;
May it forever flourish.
A prayer recited after the completion of practice to express our aspiration to share any benefits with all others.
By this beneficial activity may I obtain omniscience,
And having vanquished the harmful enemies of greed, anger, and delusion,
May I liberate all beings who are tossed about helplessly
By the waves of birth, aging, illness, and death in the ocean of becoming.