Prayer On The Occasion Of Feeding The Hungry Ghosts

If one wishes to know all the Buddhas of the past, present, and future, one should contemplate the nature of this Dharmadhatu essentially as the creation of Absolute Mind. Adoration to the Buddhas in the ten quarters;

Adoration to the Dharma pervading the ten quarters; Adoration to the Sangha in the ten quarters;

Adoration to Sakyamuni the Buddha who is our Master; Adoration to Kwanzeon the Bodhisattva, who is the great compassionate and pitying one, ready to save beings from afflictions;

Adoration to Ananda the Arhat who is the expounder of the Teaching.

Namu sabo totogyato boryakite, yen!

Sammola sammola, un!

Namu suryoboya totogyatoya tojito, yen!

Suryo suryo boya suryo boya suryo, somoko!

Namu samanda motonan, ban![1]

Adoration to Hoshin[2] the Tathagata;

Adoration to Taho[3] the Tathagata;

Adoration to Myoshishin[4] the Tathagata;

Adoration to Kohashin[5] the Tathagata;

Adoration to Rifui[6] the Tathagata;

Adoration to Kanroo[7] the Tathagata;

Adoration to Omito[8] the Tathagata.

Namu omitoboya totogyatoya,

Toniyato,

Omiritsubomi,

Omirito, Shitabomi, Omirito bigyaratei, Omirito bigyarato gyamini, Gyagyano shitogyari,

[1. It is difficult to tell how this dharani came to be inserted here. As most dharanis are, it is devoid of sense from the human point of view; but it may not be necessarily so to the hungry ghosts, for whom the prayer is offered.

Can this be restored to the original Sanskrit as follows?

Namah sarva-tathagatavalokite! Om! Sambala, sambala! Hum! Namah surupaya tathagataya! Tadyatha,

Om, suru[paya], surupaya, surupaya, suru[paya], svaha! Namah samantabuddhanam, vam!

"Be adored! O all the Tathagatas who are regarded [as our protectors]; Om! Provision, provision! Hum! Adored be the Tathagata Beautifully Formed! Namely: Om! To the Beautifully-formed One! To the Beautifully formed One! To the Beautifully-formed One! Hail! Adored be all the Buddhas! Vam!"

2. "Jewel-excelled" (ratnaketu).

3. "Abundant-in-jewel" (prabhutaratna).

4. "Fine-form-body" (surupakaya).

5. "Broad-wide-body" (vipulakaya).

6. "Freed-from-fear" (abhayankara).

7. "Nectar-king" (amritaraja).

By the supernatural power of this Dharani the food and drink is purified, and this we offer to the spiritual beings as numerous as the sands of the Ganga. We pray that they shall all be fully satisfied and abandon their greed; that they shall all leave their abodes of darkness and be born in the blissful paths of existence; and further that taking refuge in the Triple Treasure they shall awaken the desire for supreme enlightenment and finally come to the realization of it. The merit they thus attain is inexhaustible and will continue on to the end of time, making all beings equally share in this Dharma-food.

O you hosts of spiritual beings, we make this offering of food to you all, which we pray will fill the ten quarters and that all beings of your kind will partake of it.

By the practice of this meritorious deed we pray that we repay what we owe to our parents, who have done all they could for our sakes. May those who are still alive continue to enjoy their happy and prosperous lives for ever, while those who are no more with us be released from suffering and born in the land of bliss.

We pray that all sentient beings in the triple world who are recipients of the fourfold benefaction, together with those beings suffering in the three evil paths of existence and tormented with the eight kinds of calamities, may repent of all their sins and be cleansed of all their sores, so that they may all be released from the cycle of transmigration and be born in the land of purity.

We pray to all the Buddhas, all the Bodhisattva-Mahasattvas in the ten quarters, of the past, present, and future, and to Mahaprajna-paramita, that by virtue of this merit universally prevailing, not only we but all beings shall equally attain Buddhahood.

[1. Namo 'mitabhaya tathagataya! Tadyatha, amritodbhave, amritasiddhe, (?)-bhave, amritavikrante, amrita-vikranta-gamine, gaganakirtikare! Svaha!

"Adored be the Tathagata of Infinite Light! Namely: O Nectar-raising one! O Nectar-perfecting one! [O Nectar-] producing one! O One who makes nectar pervade! O One who makes nectar universally pervade! O One who makes nectar known as widely as space! Hail!"]

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