Below is the famous seven-line prayer used to show devotion to Guru Rinpoche, born as Padmasambhava in Swat Valley, Uddiyana, as marked by the pictured below stupa, which was erected by those at the monastery there in honor of this being the birthplace of the physical body of this great teacher. Meanwhile, also in Uddiyana, but still further to the west, in the Kabul Valley, the vision–the recitation of which begins on line two of the prayer–that was witnessed by the King of Uddiyana–which includes illusions of lotuses and dakinis, etc.–is repeated.
There is NO contradiction in this reality. The human birth allowed Padmasambhava the abilities to grow up, and to travel, and to spread his understandings and teachings; and also, it allowed him to obtain deathlessness.
I ask you one and all, IF, as some wanting to cling to in their belief systems are demanding, Padmasambhava was ONLY that of a spiritual birth–witnessed in the vision at the lake at Paghman by the King of Uddiyana–THEN, would not that spiritual being already be beyond death? What need would a spiritual body have of making the efforts to attain deathlessness, which it already had?
The very contradiction of his life story being at odds with that of the spiritual version of his birth as the ONLY “birth”–that recites the vision of the King of the “lotus birth”–requires of all devoted to Guru Rinpoche to accept these two realities:
1. The stupa built to celebrate his human birth near Chakdara, Swat Valley, Uddiyana, validates his having an authentic HUMAN body; and
2. The oft repeated vision experienced by the King of Uddiyana–while some 15-days distant from the actual physical birth, while on a hunting trip to Kabul Valley–at the lake of Paghman confirms that the birth to be that of the spirit of Lord Shakyamuni Buddha, (whom himself was ALSO born human, so as to pursue his path to liberation as the 4th Historical Buddha).
To accept ONLY #2, and to deny #1, is to call into question whether Padmasambhava ever existed, or, even, ever attained deathlessness, given spirits already have that state, don’t they?
To accept ONLY #1, and to deny #2, is to call into question the reports by the King of Uddiyana about his vision.
Thus, BOTH versions must be accepted to be authentic.
Thus, too, in the prayer below, the first line confirms #1–which is also confirmed by the primary evidence of the stupa marked as the birthplace of Padmasambhava–while lines two-to-five confirm #2–which is the secondary evidence supporting the realities of a human birth of one on a path that achieved deathlessness during his meditative practices in the cave in Nepal, and his other feats of accomplishment attained at the caves in Bhutan, long before ever stepping foot in Tibet–as having also occurred in Uddiyana, in the Kabul Valley, at Paghman. Lines six-to-seven confirm one’s devotion to BOTH #1 & #2.
The prayer, in seeing it this way, is still just as valid as it was when the dakinis instructed it be used to call Guru Rinpoche–then no longer a human bound to samsara, but now, due to his practices, a spiritually attained being, one free from the sufferings of samsara–to Bodhgaya (as described below in the post shared by Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, with picture of Guru Rinpoche).
Here is the seven-line prayer:
༄༅། །གུ་རུ་རིན་པོ་ཆེའི་ཚིག་བདུན་གསོལ་འདེབས་བཞུགས་སོ། །
The Seven Line Prayer
hung orgyen yul gyi nubjang tsam
Hūṃ! In the north-west of the land of Oḍḍiyāṇa,
pema gesar dongpo la
In the heart of a lotus flower,
yatsen chok gi ngödrub nyé
Endowed with the most marvellous attainments,
pema jungné shyé su drak
You are renowned as the ‘Lotus-born’,
khor du khandro mangpö kor
Surrounded by many hosts of ḍākinīs.
khyé kyi jesu dak drub kyi
Following in your footsteps,
jingyi lab chir shek su sol
I pray to you: Come, inspire me with your blessing!
guru pema siddhi hung
Happy Guru Rinpoche Day!
Elizabeth Selandia, researcher, who recorded her research as is found in the account below.
A video was taken from the top of the ruins by Victor Dare in a recent visit there, where he spent two-months visiting the various lakes in the region. Here it is:
Below, I have advanced a theory that the physical birth that is marked by the stupa at Adnan Dhari monastery was accompanied by a VISION beheld by the then King of Uddiyana, while visiting the valley of Kabul, at the lake in Paghman, (of which I am adding pictures).
I suggest that he saw the description so fondly cherished by the Tibetans of the lotus birth, but that he was also aware the real physical birth was back in Swat, and went immediately there.
Fifteen days later, he found the rebirth and identified him by the markings on his body and his golden color.
Thus, we have the 10th and 25th day feasts to celebrate these two events: the VISION of the birth of Guru Rinpoche on the 10th day of the lunar month, which occurred in Kabul Valley at the site of the lake there, and the later discovery of the physical being, in Uchh, near Chakdara, by the Swat River, minus any lake or lotuses, on the 15th day later, so the 25th day of the lunar month, and the parents confirming the birth was two-weeks prior.
In my version, both stories hold true: There is the historical marking of a stupa that heralds the actual birthplace of the physical body of Guru Rinpoche; and there is the vision of the lotus birth beheld by the King and his men while at the lake in Paghman. In my version, there are NO contradictions, both accounts are valid, and no fairy tales are involved this way.
Whether or not I’ve gotten it right, the fact remains that if he was born ONLY on a lotus, then it would not have been where history states it occurs, given lotuses are not growing there in Uddiyana! Hello, and welcome to realities, folks.
This research has actually strengthened my faith in Guru Rinpoche, whose powers seem too Hollywood to be true, often.
But, with the explanation I’ve come up with, I can see him as the continuation of Lord Shakyamuni Buddha, and therefore correctly named “the second Buddha,” (and not some sort of “virgin birth” competition or fairy tale).
I remind folks that neither Lord Shakyamuni Buddha nor Padmasambhava, nor for that matter, Vimalamitra, Tilopa, Naropa, Saraha, and the other mahasiddhas, etc., were Tibetan, and that high in the Himalayas, divorced from both Uddiyana and India, much can get lost in the translations in Tibet.
Enjoy your visit to the Adnan Dhari Stupa and to the lake at Paghman, Uddiyana (now Afghanistan), in the valley of Kabul, where I had the karma, good or other wise, to live for over two-years of my life, starting in 1966 through 1975, with the longest stint 13-months (1971-72).