Praise of Sarasvatī

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Longchen Rabjam


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The Melody of Youthful Joy

In Praise of Sarasvatī

by Longchen Rabjam

Homage to the goddess of poetry!

Goddess whose nature is supreme joy,
You dwell on an isle in a sea of qualities.
Mother of all the victors and their heirs,
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

Goddess born afresh from snowmelt
Upon the mountain of compassion
To create a gentle stream of poetry,
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

As beautiful as the moon on the fifteenth night,
Sixteen years of age and with a smiling face,
Adorned with chains that tinkle and chime—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

Like a lotus flower on lotus and moon-disc seats,
Like a snow mountain, gleaming and white,
Like the billowing clouds of autumn—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

Your face is white as the light of the moon,
The seat beneath you is a full lunar disc,
Behind you is fashioned a moonlike halo—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

In your strength, your radiance and your complexion,
You eclipse the elephant, moon and lake-born lotus;
Your beauty is wholly and forever like the sun—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

If a snow-capped mountain had eyes
Of lotuses it would resemble your face,
And your body is akin to a snowy peak—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

Again and again, I recall your form.
I focus on the vowels "A" and "Ā",
And dispel darkness with "Hrīṃ! Hrīṃ!"
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

Ema! Graceful heroine and yoginī,
Today, you’re like a rainbow in the sky,
Or like a reflection, apparent and not—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

Within the mass of light that is your form
Rays of white, yellow, red and green light
Swirl about, fusing and remaining distinct—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

To some, you appear in a cloud canopy,
In form white, bright red and blue,
Pre-eminent,[1] supreme and peaceful—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

To some, you appear in sunlight, upon lotus and moon,
Resplendent amidst a mass of five-coloured light,
With a fly-whisk and playing vīṇā and flute—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

To some, you appear illuminated and among the stars,
Issuing emanations from one moment to the next
And demonstrating miracles, visible and invisible—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

To some, you appear in a pavilion of light,
Smiling beautifully amidst variegated rays,
As you emanate and send forth creations—
Sarasvatī, I pay homage to you.

Ema! Goddess of excellent fortune,
Long-standing aspirations are today fulfilled.
When I wish to see, hear or question you again,
Pray, reveal your enlightened form!

Please direct the supremely white,
Radiant moon of your perfect wisdom
Towards all those who have faith
In you and in your progeny.

Henceforth, throughout all my lives,
Glorious goddess, be my guide,
And bring me the great wisdom
Of an unobstructed intelligence.

As I am born as if into a grove of lotuses,
With honey-like qualities of family and form,
And the hundred petals of acclaim,
May you always sustain me with your care.

May you and all your heirs
Always guide and care for me.
And may I always savour
Your infinite glory and renown.

May all who see, hear or recite
This supreme melody of youthful joy
Behold the very face of Sarasvatī
And be guided and cared for by her.

Through the virtue of offering such praise,
May all beings enjoy perfect intelligence,
Attain the supreme level of Sarasvatī,
And become a source of universal benefit to beings.

From the fine lotus pool of ethical discipline,
The swan of intelligence calls out,[2]
Spreading the broad white wings of threefold training—
May this bring happiness to all clear-minded beings.

Based on prior learning, oceanic in extent,
And the glorious goddess’s conferral of siddhi,
I, whose intelligence defies the imagination
And is a source of poetry, composed this.

May there be virtue, excellence and auspiciousness
Until the three realms of existence come to an end.

This praise to the noble lady of eloquence entitled The Melody of Youthful Joy was composed by the well-versed poet Samyepa at the Spontaneously Created Jewel-Source Mountain.

| Translated by Adam Pearcey, 2022.


Tibetan Edition

Klong chen rab 'byams. “dbyangs can ma la bstod pa.” In gsung thor bu dri med ʼod zer (sde dge par ma), Paro, Bhutan: Lama Ngodrup & Sherab Drimey, 1982. Vol.1: 152–154

Secondary Sources

Klong-chen rab'-byams. Looking Deeper: A Swan's Questions & Answers. Trans. Herbert V. Guenther. Spokane, WA: Timeless Books, 1983.

Version: 1.2-20230311

  1. Tibetan is rtse. Possibly to be read as rtsed meaning playful.  ↩

  2. The first two lines of this verse incorporate the syllabes of one of Longchen Rabjam's names, Tsultrim Lodrö (tshul khrim blo gros).  ↩

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