The Prayers

Below you will find texts of the prayers I used during my walk. For the order in which I used them, see my prayer routine.

I have "borrowed" most of these from other home pages, or from some Shikoku-related books I brought with me. The translations (where available) are approximations, from many sources. No scholarly use of this page should be made. It would be better for you to obtain these prayers from reliable sources.







Click a link to "jump" down the page, or simply scroll on down.

[From the Tokaido portion of my trek]
* * * * * * * *

[From the Shikoku Pilgrimage]
[Please note: I drew these texts from various sources in the dim, dark past, and couldn't tell you where any particular one came from. I have copied them more-or-less "as is" from my handwritten prayer book (see a sample page above), and there are most likely transcription errors. There is no rhyme or reason to the commas, hyphens, etc., either. Take them for what they're worth! A more responsible version can be found at David Turkington's site here.]




The following two prayers were not used on the Shikoku pilgrimage, but on the walk down the Tokaido; see the explanation of my prayer routine here. A slightly-different English version of the "Shigu Seigan Mon" is used in my prayers to this day.



EMMEI JIKKU KANNON GYO
Ten Verse Kannon Sutra of Timeless Life

(repeat 7 times)
KANZEON
Kanzeon!

NAMU BUTSU
I venerate the Buddha;

YO BUTSU U IN
with the Buddha I have my source,

YO BUTSU U EN
with the Buddha I have affinity--

BUP-PO- SO- EN
affinity with Buddha, Dharma, Sangha,

JO- RAKU GA JO-
constancy, ease, the self, and purity.

CHO- NEN KANZEON
Mornings my thought is Kanzeon,

BO- NEN KANZEON
evenings my thought is Kanzeon,

NEN NEN JU- SHIN KI
thought after thought arises in mind,

NEN NEN FU RI SHIN.
thought after thought is not separate from mind.

SHIGU SEIGAN MON
The Great Vows for All

SHU-JO MU HEN SEI GAN DO
The many beings are numberless, I vow to save them;

BON-NO MU JIN SEI GAN DAN
Greed, hatred, and ignorance rise endlessly, I vow to abandon them;

HO MON MU RYO SEI GAN GAKU
Dharma gates are countless, I vow to wake to them;

BU-TSU DO MU JO SEI GAN JO
The Buddha's way is unsurpassed, I vow to embody it fully.




These "prayers" were used on the Shikoku Pilgrimage. You can read which were used where here.



MAKA HANNYA HARAMITA SHIN GYO
The Great Prajna-Paramita Heart Sutra
See an example of the Hannya Shingyo in beautiful calligraphy here.

[Said once at the temple's Hondo or main hall, and again at the Daishido, dedicated to Kobo Daishi.]

KAN-JI-ZAI-BO-SATSU GYO JIN HAN-NYA-HA-RA-MI-TA JI,
Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva, while meditating deeply in the Prajñaparamita,

SHO-KEN GO-UN KAI-KU DO IS-SAI KU YAKU.
clearly perceived that all five skandhas are equally empty, overcoming all suffering.

SHA-RI-SHI, SHIKI-FU-I-KU, KU-FU-I-SHIKI,
"Listen, Shariputra, form does not differ from emptiness, nor emptiness from form.

SHIKI SOKU ZE-KU, KU SOKU ZE SHIKI,
Form is emptiness, emptiness is form.

JU SO GYO SHIKI, YAKU-BU NYO-ZE.
The same thing is true with feelings, perception, mental functioning, and consciousness.

SHA-RI-SHI, ZE SHO-HO KU-SO, FU-SHO FU-METSU,
"Shariputra, all things are marked with emptiness; they are neither produced nor destroyed;

FU-KU FU-JO, FU-ZO FU-GEN,
neither stained nor pure, neither increasing nor decreasing.

ZE-KO KU-CHU, MU-SHIKI MU-JU-SO-GYO-SHIKI,
"Therefore, in emptiness there is neither form, nor feeling, nor perception, nor mental functioning, nor consciousness;

MU-GEN-NI-BI-ZETSU-SHIN-NI,
no eye, no ear, no nose, no tongue, no body, no mind;

MU-SHIKI-SHO-KO-MI-SOKU-HO,
no form, no sound, no smell, no taste, no touchable, no object of mind;

MU-GEN-KAI-NAI-SHI MU-I-SHIKI-KAI
no realm of eyes, and so forth until no realm of mind consciousness.

MU-MU-MYO, YAKU-MU-MU-MYO-JIN,
"No ignorance and also no extinction of ignorance,

NAI-SHI MU-RO-SHI, YAKU MU-RO-SHI-JIN,
no old age and death, and so forth until no extinction of old age and death.

MU-KU-SHU-METSU-DO,
"No suffering, no origination of suffering, no extinction of suffering, and no path.

MU-CHI YAKU MU-TOKU, I-MU-SHO-TOK-KO,
No wisdom and also no attainment.  With nothing to attain,

BO-DAI-SAT-TA, E HAN-NYA-HA-RA-MI-TA KO,
 the bodhisattva, relies on Prajñaparamita,

SHIN MU-KE-GE, MU-KE-GE KO MU-U-KU-FU,
has no hindrance in his mind. Without any hindrance in his mind, there is no fear.

ON RI IS-SAI TEN-DO MU-SO, KU-KYO NE-HAN.
Liberating himself forever from illusion and dream, realizing perfect Nirvana.

SAN-ZE SHO-BUTSU, E-HAN-NYA-HA-RA MI-TA,
"All Buddhas in the past, present, and future, rely on Prajñaparamita,

KO-TOKU A-NOKU-TA-RA-SAM-MYAKU-SAM-BO-DAI.
attain Anuttara Samyak Sambodhi.

KO-CHI HAN-NYA-HA-RA-MI-TA,
"Therefore, one should know that Prajñaparamita

ZE DAI-SHIN-SHU, ZE DAI-MYO-SHU,
is the great sacred mantra, is the great vivid mantra,

ZE MU-JO-SHU, ZE MU-TO-DO-SHU,
is the supreme mantra, is the unequaled mantra,

NO-JO IS-SAI-KU, SHIN-JITSU FU-KO,
that can liberate all suffering truly and indeed.

KO SETSU HAN-NYA-HA-RA-MI-TA-SHU, SOKU SETSU SHU WATSU:
A mantra of Prajñaparamita should therefore be proclaimed:

GYA-TE, GYA-TE, HA-RA-GYA-TE, HARA-SO-GYA-TE, BO-JI SOWA-KA
Gate, gate, paragate, parasamgate, bodhi svaha.

HAN-NYA-SHIN-GYO!
The Heart Sutra.




Mantras for Honzons

[Repeated seven times at the Hondo, or main hall; they differ depending on
the temple's honzon or main figure. Temple numbers are given after each mantra.]
For more background on the honzons and their mantras, see this page.

A. Shaka Nyorai [Shakyamuni Buddha]
No-ma-ku-san-man-da-bo-da-nan-ba-ku!
(Temples 1, 3, 9, 49, 73)

B. Amida Nyorai [Amitabha Buddha]
On-a-mi-ri-ta-tei-sei-ka-ra-un.
(Temples 2, 7, 30, 47, 53, 57, 64, 68, 78)

C. Dainichi Nyorai [Mahavairochana Buddha]
On-a-bi-ra-un-ken-ba-za-ra-da-to-ban!
(Temples 4, 28, 42, 60, 61, 72)

D. Jizo Bosatsu [Kshitigarbha Bodhisattva]
On-ka-ka-ka-bi-san-ma-ei-so-wa-ka!
(Temples 5, 19, 20, 25, 56)

E. Yakushi Nyorai [Bhaishajyaguru, the "Medicine Buddha"]
On-ko-ro-ko-ro-sen-da-ri-ma-tou-gi-so-wa-ka!
(Temples 6, 11, 15, 17, 18, 22, 23, 26, 33, 34, 35, 39, 40, 46, 50, 51, 59, 67, 74, 75, 76, 77, 88)

F. Senju Kannon Bosatsu [The Thousand-Armed Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva]
On-ba-sa-ra-ta-ra-ma-ki-ri-ku!
(Temples 8, 10, 16, 29, 38, 43, 58, 66, 71, 81, 82, 84)

G. Kokuzo Bosatsu [Akashagarbha Bodhisattva]
Nou-bou-a-kya-sha-kya-ra-ba-ya-on-a-ri-kya-ma-ri-bo-ri-so-wa-ka!
(Temples 12, 21, 24)

H. Miroku Bosatsu [Maitreya Bodhisattva]
On-mai-ta-rei-ya-so-wa-ka!
(Temple 14)

I. Juichimen Kannon Bosatsu [Eleven-Headed Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva]
On-ro-ke-jim-ba-ra-a-ran-ja-ki-ri-ku! or On-ma-ka-kya-ro-ni-kya-so-wa-ka!
(Temples 13, 27, 32, 41, 44, 48, 52, 62, 65, 79, 80, [84], 86)

J. Fudo Myoo [Achalanatha, a "Dharma protector"]
No-ma-ku-san-man-da-ba-sa-ra-dan-sen-da-ma-ka-ro-sha-da-so-wa-ta-ya-un-ta-ra-ta-kan-man!
(Temples 36, 37, 45, 54)

K. Monju Bosatsu [Manjushri Bodhisattva]
On-a-ra-ha-sha-no!
(Temple 31)

L. Daitsu Chisho Butsu [Mahabhijnajnanabhibhu, an ancient Buddha]
Na-mu-dai-tsu-chi-sho-bu-tsu!
(Temple 55)

M. Bishamon Ten [Vaishravana, one of the Four Heavenly Kings]
On-bai-shi-ra-man-da-ya-so-wa-ka!
(Temple 63)

N. Sho Kannon Bosatsu [Arya Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva]
On-a-ro-ri-kya-so-wa-ka!
(Temples 69, 83, 85, 87)

O. Bato Kannon Bosatsu [Horse-Headed Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva]
On-a-mi-ri-to-do-han-ba-un-pat-ta-so-wa-ka!
(Temple 70)




KOMYOU SHINGON
Mantra of Light

[Repeated three times at the Hondo; calls on
Dainichi Nyorai to show compassion to all beings.]

ON ABOKYA BEIROSHANO MAKABODARA MANI HANDOMA JIMBARA HARABARI TAYA UN.
Om Unfailing Vairocana, the great mudra (symbol), mani (jewel), padma (lotus), and jvala (light), evolve! hum.




KIGAN MON

[Once at the Hondo, and again at the Daishido. Bishop Miyata describes this
and the Eko Mon as "extending religious merit to all beings mentally."]

OSAME TATE MATSU RUKONO TOKORO, GO HONZON, KOUSO KOU BOU DAI JI SHO TEN ZEN JIN CHIN SHU GO HOU SOU JI TE NIHON DAI SHOU JIN GI NA DO NI KI GAN SHI TA TE MATSU RU TEN KA TAI HEI BON MIN KE RAKU KA NAI ON ZEN GEN SE ON NON FU BO SHI CHO ROKU SHIN KEN ZOKU NAI SHI HOK-KAI BYOU DOU RI YAKU.

We reverently pray for eternal harmony in the universe. May we attain Buddhahood in this very life in this esoteric realm of Mahâvairocana. May the weather be seasonable, may the harvest be fruitful, may countries exist in harmony, and may all people enjoy happiness. May we share these benefits equally.

Another version:

SHI-SHI-N-HOK-KAN TEN JO CHI KYU SOKUSHIN JO BUTSU MI GON KOKU TO FUU U JUN JI GOKOKUFUNYO BONBOU KYOU WA SHONIN KE RAKUNAI SHI BOU KAI BYOU DOU RI YAKU.




EKO MON

[Once at the Hondo]

NEGAWA KU WA KONO KU DOKU O MOT-TE O MA NE KU IS-SAI NI O YO BO SHI WARERA TO SHU JOU TO MINA TOMO NI BUTSU DOU O JOU ZEN GAN NI SHI KU DO KU FU GYOU O IS-SAI GA TOU YO SHU JOU KAI GU JOU BUTSU DOU

May the merits we have accumulated be extended universally to all sentient beings so that they, together with us, may equally realize the Awakening.




GOHOGO SHINGON

[Repeat 21 times at the Daishido in praise of Kobo Daishi]

NAMU DAISHI HENJOU KONGOU
Homage to the Daishi, the Illuminating and Imperishable One




GOEIKAS

There is one Goeika for each of the 88 temples.

Because there are 88, with five lines each (ten with the Japanese included) I have decided to give them a post of their own.

Translations into English are unfortunately unavailable at the moment.









EMMEI JIKKU KANNON GYO
Ten Verse Kannon Sutra of Timeless Life

(repeat 7 times)
KANZEON
Kanzeon!

NAMU BUTSU
I venerate the Buddha;

YO BUTSU U IN
with the Buddha I have my source,

YO BUTSU U EN
with the Buddha I have affinity--

BUP-PO- SO- EN
affinity with Buddha, Dharma, Sangha,

JO- RAKU GA JO-
constancy, ease, the self, and purity.

CHO- NEN KANZEON
Mornings my thought is Kanzeon,

BO- NEN KANZEON
evenings my thought is Kanzeon,

NEN NEN JU- SHIN KI
thought after thought arises in mind,

NEN NEN FU RI SHIN.
thought after thought is not separate from mind.






Many of these prayers may be found here.

The Honzon Mantras and Goeikas are available temple-by-temple on David Turkington's page starting here.

A daily Shingon ritual may be found here.

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