A wise man like me makes tea his pleasure,
Beverage of nectar the colour of saffron,
Camphor its only rival in fragrance,
Delicate porcelain its vessel of choice;
Drink tea, a friend to those seeking wisdom.
Everyone wishing to sing melodious songs of
Fabulous verse into all the directions,
Gorge yourself first on the drink of sages;
Have a few cups of tea, and then like the famed
Hermit Luipa, you will quickly gain siddhi.
In the quest to accomplish the wisdom tradition
As taught by the mighty Tathagata himself,
Keep inner vision as your peerless guide;
Launch into meditation on the nature of voidness,
Legacy of Nagarjuna, and accomplish his state.
Mastering the essence of the profound scriptures
Numerous beyond count, and accomplishing the
Ocean of practices, like the six perfections,
Place all sentient beings, blind as cattle, on the
Path leading to knowledge, freedom, and joy.
Quench the thirst of living beings’ needs,
Regardless of the personal sacrifice required.
Strive to generate the confidence necessary
To meet with wisdom the challenges that arise, and
To overcome the fox-like distractions of fools.
Until stability in practice has been gained,
Value the life of simplicity and contentment.
Wear jewels of learning, reflection, and meditation
With the wish to become a gem to this world;
Wondrous indeed will be the results.
Worthless are all things ephemeral, yet
Worldly people see them as supreme; like
Xanthic metal, or gold, as it’s called.
Yes, they waste their lives seeking peace in them,
Zealously clutching at what always slips away.
O hark! Such is my alphabetical song,
And if you really care for yourself, you should
Be just like me, unequalled on this earth.
Ha ha. There I go again, making too much noise;
But it’s just a song voiced in fun,
A few idle verses from the pen of the poet
Yangchen Shepai Dorje, the Melodious Laughing Vajra.
The Second Dalai Lama, Gendun Gyatso here signed himself as Yangchen Shepai Dorje (the Melodious Laughing Vajra).
From: The Second Dalai Lama: His Life and Teachings, Glenn H. Mullin,
Snow Lion Publications, Reproduced here with their kind permission.
© Snow Lion Publications