His Holiness The Dalai Lama’s Favorite Prayer


His Holiness The Dalai Lama recites this prayer daily because, he says, “It gives me inner strength and enthusiasm to serve sentient being and humanity.”

It is a passage from Bodhicaryavatara, the epic poem renowned as “The Way of the Bodhisattva” composed by Shantideva. 

“May I be a guard for those who are protectorless, 
A guide for those who journey on the road. 
For those who wish to cross the water, 
May I be a boat, a raft, a bridge.

May I be an isle for those who yearn for land, 
A lamp for those who long for light; 
For all who need a resting place, a bed; 
For those who need a servant, may I be their slave.

May I be a wishing jewel, the vase of wealth, 
A word of power and the supreme healing, 
May I be the tree of miracles, 
For every being the abundant cow.

Just like the earth and space itself
And all the other mighty elements, 
For boundless multitudes of beings
May I always be the ground of life, the source of varied substance.

Thus for everything that lives, 
As far as the limits of the sky, 
May I be constantly their source of livelihood 
Until they pass beyond all sorrow.”

~Shantideva, “The Way of the Bodhisattva”

‘Shantideva’ by Robert Beer