A Prayer To Avert Nuclear War
by Chatral Rinpoche
Namo Guru Ratnatraya!
To the Teacher and the Three Jewels, I bow.
True leader of the golden age – Crown of the Sakyas!
Second Buddha, Prince of Oddiyana, Lake-Born Vajra,
Bodhisattvas – eight closest spiritual heirs
High Nobles, Avilokitesvara and Manjushri,
Vajrapani and the rest!
Twenty-one Taras, Host of Noble Elders,
Root and lineage lamas, deities,
Peaceful and wrathful gods!
Dakinis in your three homes!
(the earth, the heavens and the emanated worlds!)
You who through wisdom or karma have become Defenders of the Doctrine!
Guardians of the Directions!
Seventy-five Glorious Protectors!
You who are clairvoyant, powerful, magical and mighty!
Behold and ponder the beings of this age of turmoil!
We are beings born at the sorry end of time;
An ocean of ill-effects overflow from our universally bad actions.
The forces of light flicker,
The forces of darkness, a demon army, inflames great and powerful men.
And they rise in conflict, armed with nuclear weapons
That will disintegrate the earth.
The weapon of perverse and errant intentions
Has unleashed the hurricane.
Soon, in an instant, it will reduce the world
And all those in it to atoms of dust.
Through this ill-omened devils’ tool
It is easy to see, to hear and think about
Ignorant people, caught in a net of confusion and doubt,
Are obstinate and still refuse to understand.
It terrifies us just to hear about or to remember
This unprecedented thing.
The world is filled with uncertainty,
But there is no means of stopping it, nor place of hope,
Other than you, undeceiving Three Jewels and Three Roots,
(Buddhas, Teaching and Spiritual Community, Lama, Deity and
If we cry to you like children calling their mother and father,
If we implore you with this prayer,
Do not falter in your ancient vows!
Stretch out the lightning hand of compassion!
Protect and shelter us defenseless beings, and free us from fear!
When the mighty barbarians sit in council of war
– barbarians who rob the earth of pleasure and happiness
– barbarians who have wrong, rough, poisonous thoughts.
Bend their chiefs and lieutenants
To the side of peace and happiness!
Pacify on the spot, the armed struggle that blocks us!
Turn away and defeat the atomic weapons
Of the demons’ messengers,
And by that power, make long the life of the righteous,
And spread the theory and practice of the doctrine
To the four corners of this great world!
Eliminate root, branch and leaf – even the names
Of those dark forces, human and non-human,
Who hate others and the teaching!
Spread vast happiness and goodness
Over this fragile planet!
Elevate it truly with the four kinds of glory!
And as in the golden age, with all strife gone,
Let us be busy only with the dance of pleasure, the dance of joy!
We pray with pure thoughts-
By the compassion of that ocean the three supreme refuges
And the power of the Realm of Truth;
The complete sublime truth,
Achieve the goal of this, our prayer
Magically, just as we have hoped and dreamed!
Translated from the Tibetan by Richard Kohn and Lama Tsedrup Tharchin