Surangama Heart mantra

As promised, in my previous post “It works“, Here’s a write up on Surangama Heart Mantra. The Surangama Heart mantra is found at the end of the Surangama Mantra (which is very long and profound; consisting of 5 parts)

You may experience profound peace or profound irritation when you 1st hear this mantra. If you experience extreme irritation, as if you want to jump out of your skin; do not worry. You can stop listening to it anytime. But if you can help it, just hang on and be patient, finish listening it (20 mins).

In case, you really must stop halfway, do remember to try listening to it again next time and try to complete listening to it, from the beginning, all the way to the end. (Try lower the volume if you find it too loud)

The long mantra takes 20 min, it involves invocation of various protectors and various Buddha and then the pacification, subduction of various spiritual entities. In the below youtube performance, the mantra is chanted in a style similar to Thai monk chanting (solemn and powerful). Hope you like it.

Here’s a link to it:

The Surangama Heart mantra starts at 18:33




This heart mantra is short and can be easily adopted as a Heart practice (constant recitation)

If the 84000 Buddha dharma are medicine that cure our mental affliction, then wrong administration of drugs can have adverse side effects.

The fault is not in the medicine but in the skill of the doctor or the cooperativeness of the patient.

When I first heard of this mantra, it is touted as

  • powerful.
  • Able to subdue all evils.
  • Receiving blessings of all Buddha.

And many many more benefits.
Like all Mahayana sutra, such claim is meant to attract followers and promote faith in the practice. (That’s what i think) Not saying that they are fabricated.

Just as the wrapper is part of a sweet, perhaps describing its flavour etc; But not meant to be consumed! Likewise, such claim is not meant to inflate our ego….

Unfortunately, many people are so attracted by the wrapper that they did not taste the sweet but chose to eat the wrapper instead.

When I first learnt of the mantra’s “POWER” or “POTENCY” over malevolent forces, I immediately felt like I had learnt a magic spell that will make me invincible over supernatural beings. I was sixteen at that time.

That is a very wrong attitude because it feeds our ego and increases the 3 poisons in our mind.

Buddhism is about conquering ourselves, not other beings.

So it is very important to understand that all Buddhist practice is meant to be internalised. What that means is that, the motivation of a practice is to get rid of the negativities within ourselves.

In this case, we have to practice Surangama as a way to eliminate hatred, desire and wrong views within ourselves. That means the “evil” that we wish to subdue is really within ourselves. In our mind.

When practicing this mantra, I will recall it and mentally recite it in my mind when I feel bad thoughts overpowering me. Angry thoughts, desirous ones, laziness, greed etc. It kind of act like a reminder to be better.

Therefore when I feel anger against someone, I recite this mantra to arrest my angry thoughts. The fault lies in me for generating anger out of attachment to an illusory self.

This mantra is not meant to be recited as a curse or hex on people or imaginary foe. Buddha never ever teach hatred.

I was also taught the followings.

It is best to recite this mantra mentally ONLY, when one is outside their home or outside a Buddhist temple. To practice verbal recitation, one should try to do so at home or within a Buddhist temple. I guess that is common sense. You surely do not wish to attract stares in public right?

Another reason is because, the verbal recitation may cause discomfort to unwholesome spiritual beings. We try to be considerate and compassionate when we practice.

After learning this mantra, the goal is to conquer our internal unwholesomeness. (ie. our 3 mental afflictions) It is not our goal to conquer external beings. We should not make it our mission to exorcise evil spirits or supernatural beings.

If we ever have a chance to use this mantra like in the story, “It works“. We must be compassionate and do not harm any beings with malice.

Last but not least and the MOST IMPORTANT.

Not all unexplainable situations and behaviours are caused by unwholesome supernatural beings. We may never experience anything supernatural in our entire life. Which is a good thing.

Unexplainable situations and behaviours can be psychological. If it is supernatural, a few recitation of this mantra will resolve it.

Otherwise, it is more likely due to a psychological disorder. Please see a doctor. (get a shrink)

Combination of professional help and the practice of chanting / meditation (with correct understanding) can help greatly.

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