A little while ago, Sandra from Brazil wrote in and asked if we could post the Tibetan prayer calling for the Long Life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and teach her how to say it in Tibetan, as a Lhakar activity.
Lhakar in Tibetan translates as “White Wednesday” and is related to His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s soul day — ku lasa. (Ku here refers to His Holiness, la to soul and sa to days of the week.)
Traditionally, on Wednesdays, Tibetans have offered special prayers for His Holiness’ long life. People in Lhasa, for example, would burn incense at the main temple (the tsuglakhang), or the prayer circuits around Lhasa and the Potala Palace.
You could step outside and know that it was Wednesday by the fact that there was so much incense smoke in the air.
These days, more and more Tibetans are practicing Lhakar by consciously participating in Tibetan culture on Wednesdays — wearing Tibetan dress, shopping at Tibetan businesses, eating Tibetan foods and speaking Tibetan.[BuddhismMiddle]
Long Life Prayer for His Holiness the Dalai Lama
In the spirit of Lhakar, we will offer here the short version of the Long Life Prayer for His Holiness the Dalai Lama.* Below the Tibetan prayer you will find our rough translation, and a short video teaching you how to pronounce it.
Gangri raway korway shingkham su
In the land encircled by a ring of snow mountains
Pendang dewa malu jungway nay
Is the source of all happiness and benefit,
Chenrezig wang Tenzin Gyatso yi
All-knowing Chenrezig, Tenzin Gyatso.
Shaypay sitay bardu tengyur chik
May you stand firm until samsara ends.
You can find another way to pray for the long life of His Holiness at the end of our blog post on White Tara and her mantra.
Footnotes and Links
*According to the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT), the prayer, also in its long form, was composed by the late tutors to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, His Holiness Ling Rinpoche, and His Holiness Trijang Rinpoche.