Lama Zopa Rinpoche offering Most Secret Hayagriva oral transmissions, Drati Khangtsen, Sera Je Monastery, Bylakuppe, India, November 2017. Photo by Ven. Lobsang Sherab.

On various occasions, Lama Zopa Rinpoche has taught that receiving the oral transmission (lung) of prayers, practices, and texts is very beneficial. In addition to multiplying the benefits of one’s own recitations of the text by one hundred, the oral transmission creates positive imprints on one’s mind that lead to enlightenment.

Kyabje Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche, [one of my teachers,] once gave the oral transmission of the Vajra Cutter Sutra at Land of Medicine Buddha in the United States,” Lama Zopa Rinpoche shared at the 100 Million Mani Retreat at Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa in Pomaia, Italy, in October 2017. “At that time, Rinpoche said that if you have received the lung of the Vajra Cutter Sutra and then you recite it, you get the benefit of having recited it one hundred times.”

“The words leave a positive imprint on the mind and that brings you to enlightenment,” Rinpoche continued. “That brings realizations; that brings you to enlightenment. The lung doesn’t take much time, but the positive imprint left on the mind brings you to enlightenment. Then, you can do perfect work for sentient beings and are able to bring them to enlightenment. You have to know that. That is the basic thing; that is the main thing.”

Lama Zopa Rinpoche writing a daily motivation in a monk's diary, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, April 2016. Photo by Ven. Roger Kunsang

Lama Zopa Rinpoche writing a daily motivation in a monk’s diary, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, April 2016. Photo by Ven. Roger Kunsang.

Rinpoche also said that by keeping track of the oral transmissions one has received, one will know in the future if one is able to help support the continuity of the tradition by passing on the lung to someone else, should that be necessary.

“If you get any lung, long or short, write it down,” Rinpoche advised during the 2017 Light of the Path retreat in North Carolina in the United States. “It is very important to write it down so in the future you know which lungs you have received. In the future, some teachings may become very rare and other people will need that lung. At that time, you may have the karma to give the lung to other people, but if you didn’t receive the lineage, you can’t give them the lung because you have to have received the blessings—Buddha’s teachings from the Buddha. So write it down! It is very important for Sangha and lay people to write it down—every teaching, every lung you have received. Otherwise, you won’t know whether you have received it or not and so you won’t be able to help.”


Although most oral transmissions within FPMT must occur in person, you can receive the oral transmission of the Sutra of Golden Light online. Lama Zopa Rinpoche urges us to recite the Sutra of Golden Light every day. The benefits from reciting, listening to, or even hearing the name of the sutra are immeasurable, from eliminating conflict, terrorism, torture, and famine to achieving full enlightenment.

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