Two Hymns of Catuhstava of Nagarjuna

Tran. By M. B. Shakya

Buddhist Himalaya VOL. I  NO. II  

WINTER 1988/89

Copyright 1988 by Gakken Co. Ltd.


Paramartha stavah

1.      Lord! Since you are non-originated, residing in no place, transcending any worldly similes, indescribable through the path of words, how can I praise you?

2.      Although you cannot be praised thus, yet I with great devotion shall praise you in behavioral pattern concerning ultimate truth.

3.      Since you have the nature of non-originated, for you there is no-origin, no coming, no going,(In other words you have no coming and going in this samsara.) obeisance to you who unborn nature!

4.      You are neither existent nor non-existent, neither eternal nor non-eternal, neither permanent nor impermanent. Obeisance to you who are beyond any dualism!

5.      No color is found in you, neither green nor red nor scarlet, neither yellow nor black nor white. Obeisance to you who have the nature of colorlessness!

6.      You are neither big, nor small, neither long nor spherical. You have reached the stage of immesuarability. Obeisance to you who has the nature of immesuarability.

7.      You are neither far away nor near, neither in space nor on the earth, neither in Samsara nor in Nirvana. Obeisance to you who resides nowhere!

8.      You do not stay on any dharma but are gone into the stage of Dharmadhatu. You have reached the stage of supreme deepness. Obeisance to you who are the nature of unfathomableness!

9.      Thus praised let you be praised, or is He praised? When all dharmas are without essence, who is praised or by whom can He be praised?

10.  Who can praise you are devoid origination and decay and for you who there is neither end nor middle, neither perception nor perceived?

11.  Thus praising the Sugat who is neither gone nor come and is devoid of any going, through the merits thus acquired may this world practice the path of Sugata!



1.      O incomparable One! Obeisance to you who knows the insubstantiality of all things. You make efforts for the benefit of this world is devoid of pure views.

2.      Through your enlightenment eye no thing is seen by you, Lord! sublime is your view which perceives ultimate reality!

3.      Ultimate there is neither knower nor thing to be known. Oh! You (Lord Buddha) know the dharmata which is very difficult to comprehend.

4.      You have neither created any dharma nor destroyed any, but you attained Great Enlightenment seeing them with equanimity.

5.      You did not desire for Nirvana seeing the faults of Samsara, O Lord! you attained Peace (Nirvana) without getting rid of Samsara.

6.      You have realized that affliction and since no discrimination is possible in (dharmadhatu of affliction and dharmadhatu of cessation) so you are completely pure.

7.      O Master! You have uttered not a syllable, yet you satisfied the trainees by raining down the nectar of profound teaching.

8.      You have no attachment in the Aggregates, Sense spheres and Elements of Existence, You whose mind is the nature of space do not dwell in any dharmas.

9.      O Lord! you have no notion of being at all, but you have infinite compassion towards miserable sentient beigs.

10.  O Lord! Your intellect mind does not adhere to various dualistic imagination as regards pleasure and pain, soul and no-soul, permanent and impermanent things.

11.  You held the view that there is no coming or going of the things neither are there anything deposited somewhere else ultimately.

12.  Although you prevail everywhere yet you are born nowhere. Although you manifested birth (in Lumbini) yet your body is the nature of dharmakaya. O Lord of the Stages! It is indeed inconceivable.

13.  You, the irreproachable one, preached that in this world there is neither creation nor destruction just as sound and echo are neither the same nor different, neither there is one nor many.

14.  O Lord! you have realized that this world is just like dream or magic play neither having eternal nor impermanent neither having Signs nor without Signs.

15.  You have gained complete victory over the river of afflictions from its roots. But you earned the nectar of (Nirvana) by knowing the very nature of afflictions.

16.  O Courageous one! you who are of the nature of sign less se from as ‘no-from’. But your dazzling body has appeared to us endowed with Thirty two Auspicious marks.

17.  Even if one sees the form it is not the “seeing”. If one sees the dharma dharma it is then well-seen but dharmata cannot be seen.

18.  Your body is neither hollow nor have any bone, flesh and blood (as mortal beings have) Still you have manifested a body just as the rainbow in the sky.

19.  It is not possible that you have hunger, thirst, impurity and disease in your body but you showed as worldly activities according to worldly convention.

20.  O Sinless one! you do not have even the slightest obstruction of Karma still out of great compassion you showed the world the law of cause and effect as infallible.

21.  O Lord! From the point of view of wisdom there is no difference between various yanas. Yet you showed the Triple vehicles in order to lead sentient beings to the right path.

22.  O peerless conqueror! Your dharma body is eternal, imperishable and auspicious yet you manifested the Great Pari Nirvana to the world for the sake of trainees.

23.  In the countless world systems the devotees will behalf you again descending upon earth, taking birth, attaining Enlightenment, preaching the dharmacakra, and entering into Nirvana.

24.  O Lord! you have neither thoughts, nor differentiation nor any intentions yet you are accomplishing in this world the duty of a Buddha (for the welfare of sentient being) without  attachment.


Thus by offering the above mentioned flowers of prayer to the Buddha endowed with inconceivable and boundless virtues. If any virtues are then by these merits may all then by these merits may all sentient beings be the vessels of the supreme and deep doctrines of Lord Buddha.