The Shurangama mantra is a dharani (long mantra) of Buddhist practice in China, Japan, Korea and other Buddhist countries. Although moderately unknown in modern Tibet, there are several Shurangama Mantra sacred writings in the Tibetan Buddhist canon. It is connected with Tangmi and Shingon Buddhism.
This powerful Buddhist mantra was, according to the opening chapter of the Sutra, historically transmitted by Gautama Buddha to Manjusri to defend Ananda before he had become an arhat. Moreover, it was again talked by the Gautama Buddha before an assembly of different enlightened beings and dharmapalas.
Like the well known six-syllable mantra – Om mani padme hum – the magical mantra from Tibet, and the Great Compassion Mantra, this mantra is synonymous with practices of Avalokitesvara, an important Bodhisattva in both East Asian Buddhism and Tibetan Buddhism.
The most powerful mantra in the world
This Dharani is also extensively referenced Buddhist deities such as the Bodhisattvas Manjusri, Mahakala, Sitatapatra Vajrapani and the Five Dhyani Buddhas, especially Bhaisajyaguru. Furthermore, it is often used for protection or purification of negative karma for meditators and is considered to be part of Shingon Buddhism in Japan.
Among the sacred Gautama Buddha’s teachings, this Buddhist mantra is considered to be the king of mantras because it is the longest and probably the most important. It is considered by many scholars that the flourish or demise of Buddhism rests entirely with the mantra.
Some believe that it is the efficacious Sanskrit phrases of the mantra that keep heaven and earth from being destroyed. As long as a single person can recite it (with correct pronunciation), the world cannot be obliterated, nor can Buddhism.
But when there is no longer anyone who can recite this potent Buddhist dharani, then very quickly the world will be destroyed, because the Proper Dharma (spiritual teachings) no longer abides.
Shurangama Mantra meaning and benefits:
The entire title (translation) of this dharani is “Great White Canopy of Light Dharani Mantra”. It is additionally called “Brilliant Buddha’s Crown, Great White Canopy of Light, Unsurpassed Spiritual Mantra.” The Buddha’s Crown refers to the transformation Buddha atop the Buddha’s crown.
The content of this magical dharani subdues heavenly demons and controls externalists. Every line, from beginning to end, is the Buddhas’ mind-ground Dharma-door. There is no real way to conceive the subtle wonder of the mantra. Each line possesses its own esoteric miracle and each is endowed with incredible strength.
The recitation of a single word or the recitation of the entire dharani causes the heavens to vibrate and the earth to tremble. Additionally, it’s said that the demons keep a wide distance, heaven and earth are shocked, the ghosts and spirits wail, and mountain and river sprites hide away.
That splendor at the Shakyamuni Buddha’s crown represents the power of the mantra that can dispel every sort of darkness and that enables living beings to amass all kinds of merit and virtue. You will certainly attain the Unsurpassed Proper and Equal Right Enlightenment. If you can accept and uphold the mantra, then you will definitely become a Buddha in the future.
If you continually recite this mantra, then you can get rid of your karmic obstacles and hindrances from last life and all past lives.
More benefits explained:
“This mantra is extremely efficacious, but it is not that easy to master. First of all, you cannot be selfish; next, you cannot be out to get your own private gains. You have to be magnanimous and devoid of selfish thoughts. You have to be impartial and not prejudiced. You have to be willing to sacrifice yourself for the good of others. If you can embody the above-listed qualities, then you will have swift success. Pay close attention: you must hold the 5 precepts and practice the 10 good deeds. That’s the very least you should do.
It won’t work to practice this Dharma if you are not following the rules. If you cultivate this Dharma but you don’t behave yourself; if you don’t protect the precepts or if you are always having defiled thoughts, then not only will there be no response, not only will you have no achievement, you will, in fact, bring disaster down upon yourself.
And so when you are cultivating the benefits of chanting this mantra, you must be very attentive to maintain purity with your body, your mouth, and your mind. You must pay attention to all aspects of your behavior, whether walking, standing, sitting, or lying down.
That’s the only way you’re going to get a response. You cannot say things that cause schisms or make people in the Way-place uneasy.
It’s not all right to always be washing other peoples’ clothes as it were. Take care of yourself. Look into yourself.” – Venerable Master Hsuan Hua’s quote.