usnisa vijaya dharani cover

Learn About Usnisa Vijaya Dharani Sutra

The “Usnisa Vijaya Dharani” is a Buddhist sutra that is also known as the “Victorious Crown Ornament Dharani” or the “Great Usnisa Victory Mantra.” It is a prominent mantra in Mahayana Buddhist traditions, particularly in East Asian Buddhism. The mantra is revered for its supposed power to bring blessings, protection, and positive influences to those who recite or chant it. An alternate longer Sanskrit title is the Sarvadurgatiparisodhana Usnisa Vijaya Dharani Sutra.

The term “Usnisa” refers to the crown ornament or protuberance on the top of the Buddha’s head, symbolizing his wisdom and enlightenment. “Vijaya” means victory or triumph. The sutra is considered to be a dhāraṇī, which is a type of spiritual formula or incantation believed to have protective and transformative qualities.

The “Usnisa Vijaya Dharani” is often associated with the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara (Kuan Yin or Guanyin in East Asian Buddhism), who is known as the embodiment of compassion. It is believed that Avalokiteshvara bestowed this mantra upon devotees as a means of invoking blessings and assistance.

guanyin in white and gold
Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara (Kuan Yin or Guanyin in East Asian Buddhism)

The mantra itself is traditionally recited or chanted in Sanskrit and consists of a series of sounds and syllables. It is thought that the sounds themselves hold spiritual power, irrespective of their literal meaning. Variations of the mantra can be found in different Buddhist traditions, and it may be recited for various purposes, including seeking protection, dispelling negative influences, and cultivating positive virtues.

Origin of the Usnisa Vijaya Dharani Sutra

During the time of Shakyamuni Buddha, there was a celestial being in the heavenly realms named Devaputra Susthila. One day, suddenly, he heard a voice telling him that his accumulated merits were about to be exhausted and that he would die in seven days. The voice further explained that he would first be reborn as an animal, and then he would descend into the realm of hell, experiencing various forms of suffering. Afterward, he would be reborn into a humble family, experiencing a continuous cycle of rebirths and suffering. Upon hearing this, Devaputra Susthila was filled with fear and hurriedly went to seek help from Lord Sakra, the ruler of the heavenly realms.

Lord Sakra, after meditative observation, confirmed the dire situation. He then sought the assistance of Shakyamuni Buddha. Upon learning of this, Shakyamuni Buddha taught a sutra and transmitted the “Victorious Crown Mantra” (尊胜咒). The sutra explained that all sentient beings who hear, see, contemplate, or recite the Victorious Crown Mantra would receive extraordinary benefits. Even beings in the animal realm, if their bodies’ shadows touched the shadows cast by the sutra’s inscribed pillars, would be blessed by the power of the mantra, which could eradicate negative karma and prevent entry into unfavorable realms.

Following Buddha’s guidance, Devaputra Susthila diligently recited the mantra for six days and nights. Eventually, he purified the negative karma accumulated from previous lifetimes, thus accumulating more merits and extending his life. As a result of his efforts, he received the seal of approval from Shakyamuni Buddha.

The Mantra (Long Form)

Namo bhagavate trailokya prativiśiṣṭaya buddhaya bhagavate.
Tadyatha, om, visodhaya visodhaya, asama-sama
Samantavabhasa-spharaṇa gati gahana svabhava visuddhe,
Abhisincatu mam. sugata vara vacana amṛta abhisekai maha mantra-padai.
Ahara ahara ayuh saṃ-dharaṇi. śodhaya sodhaya gagana svabhava visuddhe.
Usnisa vijaya visuddhe sahasra-rasmi sam-codite.
Sarva tathagata aparimaṇe sat-paramita-paripuranni.
Sarva tathagata mati dasa-bhumi prati-sṭhite.
Sarva tathagata hrdaya adhisṭhanadhisṭhita maha-mudre.
Vajra kaya sam-hatana visuddhe.
Sarva avaraṇa apaya-durgati pari visuddhe, prati-nivartaya ayuh suddhe.
Samaya adhisṭhite. Maṇi mani maha mani.
Tathata bhuta-koṭi parisuddhe. Visphuta buddhi suddhe.
Jaya jaya, vijaya vijaya. sphara sphara, sarva buddha adhisṭhita suddhe,
Vajri vajra gadhe vajram bhavatu mama sariram.
Sarva sattvanam ca kaya pari visuddhe. Sarva gati parisuddhe.
Sarva tathagata sinca me samaavasayantu.
Sarva tathagata samasvasa adhisthite.
Budhya budhya, vibudhya vibudhya,
Bodhaya bodhaya, vibodhaya vibodhaya samanta parisuddhe.
Sarva tathagata hrdaya adhisṭhanadhisṭhita maha-mudre svaha.

Video of Tinna Tinh Beautiful Chant of Unisa Vijaya Dharani.

The Mantra (Short Form)

Om Brhum Svaha Om Amrita Āyur Dade Svaha

Benefits of Chanting The Mantra

This passage appears to describe the benefits and attributes of the Usnisa Vijaya Dharani Sutra (佛顶尊胜陀罗尼经) and its associated mantra. It emphasizes the various positive outcomes and protections that practitioners can attain by reciting and meditating on this mantra. The following are the points highlighted in the passage:

  • The mantra can eliminate all afflictions and negative karmic obstacles.
  • It can disrupt the suffering of beings in unfavorable realms.
  • Practitioners can receive the protection and blessings of all bodhisattvas, enabling them to overcome obstacles and difficulties in their present lives.
  • The mantra has the power to overcome suffering in hellish realms and other challenging situations, redirecting practitioners towards positive paths.
  • For those seeking longevity or relief from illness, reciting the mantra 1,000 times on the 15th day of a lunar month after observing purity and fasting can result in increased lifespan, healing, and the elimination of negative karma.
  • The mantra’s practice can purify accumulated negative karma and lead to enlightenment, resulting in birth in various sublime buddha realms.
  • Even a brief recitation of the mantra can alleviate the sufferings of hell, animal, and hungry ghost realms.
  • The mantra’s profound power can purify past negative deeds and lead to rebirth in pure and enlightened states.
  • Reciting the mantra 1,000 times can extend lifespan, eliminate illness, and remove obstacles. Even beings like birds and animals can be freed from suffering by hearing this mantra.
  • According to the “Sutra on Purifying Negative Karma,” reciting this mantra at the time of death leads to rebirth in buddha realms, and hearing it grants relief from sufferings.
  • Reciting the mantra 1,000 times leads to bodily, verbal, and mental purity, and brings stability and well-being.
  • Recollection and consistent practice in various birthplaces can lead to increased lifespan.
  • Practitioners who remember the mantra are continuously observed and protected by all the buddhas.
  • Those who remember the mantra are respected and cherished by others.
  • The Buddha Crowned with Many Jewels and its associated mantra have immense power to eliminate suffering, overcome obstacles, and fulfill desires.

This passage underscores the transformative and protective qualities attributed to the practice of the mantra, and the positive outcomes that practitioners can achieve through its recitation and meditation.

Usnisa Vijaya In Tibetan Buddhism

The Uṣṇīṣavijaya, known as “Namgyalma” in Tibetan Buddhism, has nine different forms, with the most significant being the three-faced, eight-armed manifestation. This is the most commonly observed depiction. She wears a crown on her head and her body is white in color, with three faces and eight arms. The central face is white, the right face is yellow, and the left face is blue. Her expression carries a slight wrathful aspect, with visible fangs, and each face has three eyes.

usnisa vijaya taiwan drawn

Three Faces

The white color in the center represents pacifying obstacles. The yellow color on the right signifies the augmentation of all phenomena. The blue color on the left represents the method of subduing.

Eight Hands

  1. The first hand on the right holds a four-colored vajra-cross scepter, representing accomplishing the task of subduing negative forces and overcoming obstacles.
  2. The second hand supports a lotus throne, with Amitabha Buddha (or possibly Mahavairocana Buddha) as a spiritual guide on top, symbolizing compassion and care.
  3. The third hand holding an arrow signifies compassionately attracting sentient beings.
  4. The fourth hand, with a gesture of granting wishes, is placed in front of the right leg, symbolizing fulfilling the desires of all beings.
  5. The first hand on the left, forming an angry fist, holds a noose, representing taming all difficult-to-tame beings.
  6. The second hand raised upward forms a gesture of granting fearlessness, symbolizing protection from all fears.
  7. The third hand holding a bow represents transcending victory over the three realms.
  8. The fourth hand forms a gesture of meditative equipoise and holds a vase of nectar, symbolizing bestowing long life and health upon sentient beings.

The image of Uṣṇīṣavijaya embodies both solemnity and compassion. She wears a precious necklace, dons elegant celestial garments, and sits in a cross-legged posture on a lotus throne at the center.

Uṣṇīṣavijaya holds a significant place in Tibetan Buddhism, believed to possess immense spiritual power for overcoming obstacles, protecting beings, and aiding practitioners in cultivating mindfulness and awakening. This image is an essential focus in Buddhist practice, veneration, and reverence.

Leave a Comment