Mantra means Protection

Tharpa: “Mantra. Mantra is Protection.

It is very important practice. Mantra helps all the time. Mantra protects against all dangers. Buddhas always help you. Mantra is asking Buddha for help.”

Jas: I’d asked Tharpa what the Tibetan for protection is. As Tharpa comes from Tibet, I was looking for a translation.
I was surprised at his reply.

“You are stuck in samsara.
You are attached to samsara.
You are afraid to get out.”

You are like a pigeon stuck in a swamp

“That’s what we say in Tibet.

You want to fly but you can’t!
Your feet are tied to a rock so you can’t fly.
You can’t get out of samsara.

Mantra protects you and helps you get out of the swamp of samsara.
It makes you strong.”

nb. Samsara is the cycle of uncontrolled birth, death and rebirth.

In Tibetan Buddhist symbology, pigeons represent attachment.
They are used to show how our desirous minds grasp at things.
Like pigeons pecking at scraps of food on the floor, our minds are always searching for happiness, never satisfied with what they have, never experiencing any real peace.

Part of the Conversations with Kadampas series,
featuring snippets from MKMC.

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