SONG OF FLAWLESS AMBROSIA

In TANTRIC POETRY by Erik Pema Kunsang

This song by Vima Mudra, one of the names of Vimalamitra, is a part of his vajra song, entitled Flawless Ambrosia. Here, he plays on the word “ambrosia” — related to the Sanskrit amrita, the nectar of immortality — which means “demon-crusher,” overcoming the Mara of death. One of Vimalamitra’s specialties was alchemy, so it is apt that this excerpt of his beautiful and profound song covers the view of transforming the five poisons, using the alchemy of self-existing awareness.

This natural song, the view of the Flawless Ambrosia,
Was sung by Vima Mudra, a yogi of the sky.

The attitude of clinging to desire is a demon;
Let’s crush it with the strength of rigpa undetached.
When naturally dissolved within a flawless, empty ease,
Discriminating wisdom is revealed.

The attitude of blatant hatred is a demon;
Let’s crush it with awareness holding no duality.
As it naturally dissolves in flawless magic, empty presence,
The wisdom like a mirror is revealed.

The attitude of slothful dullness is a demon;
Let’s crush it with awareness, lucid yet thought-free.
As it naturally dissolves in flawless, basic, empty cognizance,
The dharmadhatu wisdom is revealed.

The attitude of pride conceited is a demon;
Let’s crush it with awareness, self-existing, ego-free.
As it naturally dissolves into the sphere of flawless, empty rigpa,
The wisdom of equality is revealed.

The attitude of painful envy is a demon;
Let’s crush it with awareness beyond ceasing and arising.
As it naturally dissolves in open space of flawless feeling,
The wisdom all-accomplishing is revealed.

Primeval, self-existing purity of everything,
Root of knowing and its fivefold wisdoms,
From here spread the branches of every type of insight;
This I call the amrita of ornaments.

Tasting this ambrosia, Mara the emotions in delusion
Are crushed by rigpa’s undeluded wakefulness.
Like iron touching the philosopher’s stone,
No division—kayas and the wisdoms self-perfected.

English translation & vocal: Erik Pema Kunsang. Music & vocal: Tara Trinley Wangmo. (c) 2010 Songs from Sacred Islands. Bamboo flute: Ajith Kodikara. Tabla: Malith Anuradha & Ajith Alosius. Sitar: Deshapriya Mihiripenna. Keyboard: Ranga Jagoda. Sri Lanka.
Painting Vimalamitra by Sergey Noskov.
Modified from Wellsprings of the Great Perfection, Erik Pema Kunsang, Rangjung Yeshe Publications.

About the Author
Erik Pema Kunsang

Erik Pema Kunsang

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Translator of ancient Buddhist scriptures, author, bridge-builder to modern life, Buddhist teacher & meditation instructor. Board of director at 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha. Founder of Rangjung Yeshe Publications and LEVEKUNST art of life. Other LEVEKUNST articles by the same author. Erik’s website & retreats.

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