The Twenty-One Forms of Tara

According to the Tradition of Lord Atisha

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Ven. in November 2002 and revised in September 2004. Revision 2. Choden Rinpoche and Beyer’s book The Cult of Tara. CA.The text for the 21 forms of Tara was compiled from oral Commentaries by Ven.01 (9/2004) www. slightly edited and formatted by Wolfgang Saumweber under the guidance of Lama Kunga Rinpoche.15 - . Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche. The text for the Praises to the Twent-One Taras was taken from Martin Willson.com -2. Kensington.vajrayogini.

And the kinnaras do honour! Armoured in all joyful splendor. which involves using forceful methods for accomplishing activities for Enlightened purposes that cannot be accomplished through other means. peace. Totally dispelling poison! 19. Homage! Full of liberating Pow’r by the set of three natures! Destroys hosts of spirits. Homage! She whose two eyes bright with Radiance of sun and full moon! With twice HARA and TUTTARE She dispels severe contagion! 21. Each of these is represented by a different color: White represents the Enlightened activity of pacifying. These symbolise her mastery of the perfections of generosity. yakshas. or overpowering external forces that cannot be tamed through the first two activities. Yellow represents the Enlightened activity of increasing the positive qualities conducive to a long life.14 -3- . Black represents the Enlightened activity of wrath. removing obstacles to sickness. Her left hand at her heart is in the mudra of bestowing refuge: her thumb and ring finger are pressed together to symbolise the united practice of method and wisdom. happiness and success in one’s Dharma practice.. and forcefully accumulating conducive conditions for one’s Dharma practice. for example. Visualization The main (green) Tara is seated upon a lotus arising from the waters of a lake. Dharma and Sangha.18. She dispels bad dreams and conflicts! 20. untimely death. etc.Buddha. causes of untimely death and obstacles to success in one’s life or one’s practice. Homage! Holding in her hand the Deer-marked moon of deva-lake form! With twicespoken TARA and PHAT. morality and so forth. The different colors of these 21 Taras correspond to the 4 different types of enlightened activity: Tara is the female Buddha of Enlightened Activity (Tib: trinley. Homage! She whom gods and their kings. The tiara fastened . Her right hand is in the mudra of supreme generosity indicating her ability to provide beings with whatever they desire. of which there are 4 types: pacifying. increase and so forth. In each hand she holds the stem of a blue utpala flower. for example overcoming sickness. the embodiment of enlightened activities.. She wears rainbow colored stockings. Red represents the Enlightened activity of power. just as Tara is said to have arisen from the compassionate tears of Avalokiteshvara. Each flower consists of three blossoms indicating that Tara. and the three remaining fingers are raised to symbolise the Three Jewels of Refuge . increasing. Tara is dressed in the silken robes of royalty. is the Mother of the Buddhas of the past. overpowering and wrathful. a white half-blouse and various jeweled ornaments. present and future. And raised corpses! Supreme! TURE! The Twenty-One Forms of Tara According to the Tradition of Lord Atisha Introduction Tara has 21 primary emanations which perform different activities such as pacification.

They are seated with their right feet extended and their left drawn up.All 21 Taras have one face and two hands: in their right hands. Homage! She who strikes the ground with Her palm. adorned with silks and all precious ornaments. Homage! At the heart her fingers. her spiritual father and the head of her Buddha family. with her HUM sign Saving from every misfortune! 12.in her black hair is adorned with jewels. peaceful! She whose field is peace. all ornaments most shining! Amitabha in her hair-knot Sending out much light eternal! 13. the central one is a red ruby symbolic of Amitabha. Meru. Mandara. Crown emitting garlands of light! Mirthful.13 - . Destroyer of the great evil! 16. radiating forth measureless light. dakinis. left bent. With a warm compassionate gaze she looks down upon each sentient being as a mother regards her only child. Adorn her with Three Jewel mudra! Light-ray masses all excited! All directions’ wheels adorn her! 10. She is seated in a distinctive posture. Homage! Happy. Homage! TURE! With seed letter Of the shape of syllable HUM! By foot stamping shakes the three worlds. nirvana! She endowed with OM and SVAHA. and protectors of the Law. frowning. Subjugating maras. 9. and with her foot beats it! Scowling. upon the palm of their gift-bestowing gestures. Homage! She with joy surrounded Tearing foes’ bodies asunder. radiant. with the letter HUM the Seven levels she does conquer! 15. devas! 11. and surrounded on all sides by countless hosts of Buddhas. Her emerald-green color — related to the wind element and hence to movement — signifies her ability to act swiftly and without delay to bring benefits to sentient beings. they hold the flasks that accomplish their various active functions. laughing with TUTTARE. on thrones of lotus and moon. Homage! She ’mid wreath ablaze like Eon-ending fire abiding! Right stretched. her left leg withdrawn to symbolise her renunciation of worldly passion and her right leg extended to show that she is always ready to arise and come to the aid of those who need her help. virtuous. and with their left hands they hold a lotus flower. Homage! She able to summon All earth-guardians’ assembly! Shaking. and Vindhya! -4- . Arrangement of the ten letters! 17. Frees with HUM and knowledge mantra. Homage! She so joyous. Homage! Crown adorned with crescent Moon. high patron deities. joy surrounds you Troops of enemies destroying! 14. Bodhisattvas.

Shakra. direction. and with their left hands they hold a lotus flower. and surrounded on all sides by countless hosts of Buddhas. Homage! She whose face combines a Hundred autumn moons at fullest! Blazing with light rays resplendent As a thousand star collection! 3. They are seated with their right feet extended and their left drawn up. Homage! TURE. effort. All 21 Taras have one face and two hands: in their right hands. on thrones of lotus and moon. right in. Homage! Golden-blue one.Praises to the Twenty-one Taras OM I prostrate to the noble transcendent liberator. adorned with silks and all precious ornaments. meditation her sphere! 4. desire. austerities. Homage! With Her TRAD and PHAT sounds Destroying foes’ magic diagrams! Her feet pressing. very dreadful! Destroyer of Mara’s champion(s)! She with frowning lotus visage Who is slayer of all enemies! . yakshas! 7. Bodhisattvas. Agni. Patience. and protectors of the Law. Able to draw forth all beings! 6. Having reached ev’ry perfection! 5. radiating forth measureless light. dakinis. HUM. they hold the flasks that accomplish their various active functions. Homage! Filling with TUTTARE.12 -5�� �� �� �� �� �� �� �� �� � � � � � �� �� �� � � � � Around the main (green) Tara who sits on a moon cushion on top of a multicolored lotus each of the 21 Taras sits on a lotus petal. Actions triumph without limit! Relied on by conquerors’ children. . swift. and space! Trampling with her feet the seven worlds. Blazing in a raging fire-blaze! 8. going counterclockwise from the front. upon the palm of their gift-bestowing gestures. Homage! Crown of tathagatas. Marut! Honored by the hosts of spirits. 1. gandharvas. lotus Water born. Brahma. calm. Homage! Worshipped by the all-lords. Corpse-raisers. heroic! Eyes like lightning instantaneous! Sprung from op’ning stamens of the Lord of three world’s tear-born lotus! 2. Homage! Tara. in hand adorned! Giving. high patron deities. left out.

Principal Aspect: Khadiravani Tara Tara of the Acacia Grove: green. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SHINTING KURU SVAHA 3. holding the green flask whence come all magical attainments. SERDOG CHEN . holding the red flask that dispels fevers. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA SIDDHI SADHANAM SVAHA 2. her body colored white and radiating varicolored lights.11 - . who destroys hindering demons and injuries. holding the red flask that subjugates. SHIWA CH’ENMO . TR’INLE T’AMCHE YONGSU DZOGPAR JEPE’I DROLMA . holding the yellow flask that increases. peaceful expresssion OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SVAHA 20. her body colored red. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE WASHAM KURU SVAHA 21. who defeats diseases and evil spirits. her body colored red. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE VISARATA SVAHA The Twenty-One Taras 1. NYURMA PALMO .Lady of Supreme Peace The Tara white as the autumn moon. RIMNE SELWE’I DROLMA .She Who Completely Perfects All Enlightened Activities The Tara who fulfills all active functions. colored yellow. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE PUSHTIM KURU SVAHA -6- .Swift Lady of Glory The Tara swift and heroic.She Who Removes Pestilence The Tara who dispels all fevers.Lady of Golden Yellow Color The Tara who increases life and enjoyment. holding the white flask that pacifies.

her body colored redyellow. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA VIDYA ARARA VARANAYA SVAHA . her body colored white. her body colored red-black. who dispels it. holding the yellow flask of life. her body colored white. who increases one’s intelligence. holding the yellow flask that subdues magic mantras. holding the blue flask that confounds ghosts and awakened corpses.Tara Who Arises from the Hung of Intrinsic Awareness The Tara victorious over the contentions of others. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE MACANA SVAHA The Tara defeating others. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SHTRI AKARSHAYA HRIH SVAHA 7.She Who Alleviates All Suffering The Tara who dispels bad dreams and suffering. holding the red-yellow flask that increases wisdom.16. who tames ghosts. colored yellow.She Who Neutralizes Poison The Tara pacifying the poison of the naga serpents. her body colored black. DROLMA JIGTEN SUMYOWA . OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA STAMBHANI TARE SVAHA 6. Embodying All Positive Qualities The Tara victorious.She Who is Completely Victorious Over the Three Worlds 18. HUNG DRADROGMA . holding the white flask that dispels suffering.She Who Conquers Others 19. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA DHARMAH PRATI-PARISHODHAYA SVAHA 4. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE NAGA VISHA SHANTIM KURU SVAHA The Tara victorious over the triple world.10 - -7- .Lady of Complete Victory. SHEN JOM-MA .She Who Proclaims the Sound of HUM 17. who grants the highest life. RIGPA HUNGLE DROLMA . JIGTEN SUMLE NAMPAR GYALMA . holding the black flask that averts magic mantras. who shakes the triple world. DUGSELMA . holding the white flask that dispels poison and disease. DUG-NGAL T’AMCHE SELWE’I DROLMA . TSUGTOR NAMPAR GYALMA . OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SHATRUN UCCHATAYA SVAHA The Tara crying the sound of HUM who subjugates and summons with the gesture of wisdom. her body colored red. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE AYUR-JNANA PUSHTIM KURU SVAHA 5. who averts the magic mantras of others. her body colored red-yellow.She Who Causes the Three Realms to Tremble The Tara pacifying mara demons and obscurations. holding the red flask that ravishes.

her body colored red-yellow like refined gold. her body colored red.8. JIGPA KUNKYOB (MA. TRASHI TAMCHE JINMA . who destroys hindering demons. her body the color of gold. holding the yellow flask that dispels poverty. holding the while flask that cleanses sins and obscurations. DUDANG JIGTEN WANGDU DEMA . her body colored white. her brows slightly frowning. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA MARA PRAMARDHANI SVAHA The Tara with frowning brows. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE MAM UPAKRAMA RAKSHA RAKSHA SVAHA 14. holding. P’ONGPA SELMA .She Who Brings Maras and the World Under Her Power The Tara who tames all maras and obstructions. her body colored red-black. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE MANGALAM SVAHA 13. who cleanses sins and obscurationns. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA PAPAM PRASHAMANAYA SVAHA -8- -9- . METAR BARMA .She Who Blazes Like Fire 9.She Who Conquers Maras and Enemies The Tara who defeats mara demons and enemies. her body colored black. . who grants the magical attainments. holding the white flask that defeats all terrors. holding the red flask that protects from obstacles. the dark blue flask that pierces hindering demons. holding the white flask of good fortune. holding the red flask that defeats mara demons.She Who Grants All That is Auspicious The Tara who grants all good fortune. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE VAJRA MAHA PADA BHASMIM KURU SVAHA The Tara who defeats hindering demons and obstacles. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE VASUDHARINI SVAHA The Tara great and calm. SHIWA CH’ENMA . DU DRA JOM-MA . TRONYER CHEN .She Who Is Frowning Wrathfully 10. holding the red flask that defeats mara demons and enemies.She of Supreme Peacefulness 11. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA MARA SHATRUN MARAYA PHAT SVAHA 12.She Who Protects from All Fears The Tara whose gesture symbolizes the Three Jewels.She Who Eradicates Poverty The Tara dispelling the suffering of poverty. her body colored red and blazing like fire. who protects from all terrors. OM TARE TUTTARE TURE BHAYA BHASMIM KURU SVAHA 15.

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