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Updated on November 1, 2012

The Goddess Tara is venerated in both Hinduism and Buddhism. She provides an important link through Tantra between Tibetan Buddhism and its parent, Hinduism.

Tara emerged as a deity in the eigth century and after. Her role was to transform Buddhism from a religion without an important female archetype into one where, increasingly the feminine was seen as something sacred and divine.

Perhaps I hear the chime of her ankled feet

Perhaps I hear a shimmering footfall in the twilight

Her laughter echoes through a sombre graveyard

Tara-the mother of compassion

When oft the weight of burdensome learning

Hangs heavy on the visage of many a learned savant

Assuming the form a light-hearted belle

She teaches them to carry learning lightly

Many are her forms; Green, White, Red, Blue

As Green Tara she brings felicity

As White Tara . she is the mother of compassion

As Blue Tara, she sublimates anger

Kurrukulla, she magnetizes objects

She of the Teak forest succored Nagarjuna

A thousand hands has she

And a thousand eyes

In each of her hands

So that she may view the suffering

Of all beings

For the infinity of beings

Requires an infinity of compassionate succor

O triumph of womanhood

Thou tookest the vow

of the Bodhisattva

To help all beings

Attain to Nirvana

And that in each of Thy incarnations

Thou tookest the further vow

That Thou wouldst always incarnate as a woman

The friend of Atisha

She was ever his guide

And helped him take

The religion of the Buddha to Tibet

To renew it afresh there

O Lady, Mother , Friend and Redeemer

Thou hast ever been the symbol of Compassion

Shunyata enformed

The Bodhisattva waiting to redeem all

And since this is never finished

Thou art always on the stile

Midway between Nirvana and sangsara

Waiting for the last sheep to cross

Into the Blessed Realm


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