Vasudhara is a goddess of wealth, prosperity, spiritual wealth, and wisdom. She is considered to be one of the 21 Taras, also known as “Golden/Yellow Tara“. This beautiful Goddess brings spiritual and material abundance to anyone who recites her mantra. In this article, I will introduce you to Yellow Tara and share with you her sacred mantra that can help you significantly improve your spiritual and material wellbeing.
Who Is Vasudhara (Yellow Tara/Golden Tara)?
Vasudhara, whose name means “stream of gems” in Sanskrit, is the Buddhist bodhisattva of wealth, prosperity, and abundance. She is also known as Golden Tara or Yellow Tara.
The goddess originated in Indian Buddhism and was later transmitted to Tibet. In India, Vasudhara is compared to Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth, fortune, and abundance. Both goddesses have identical iconography and often appear with their husbands. Lakshmi’s husband is Vishnu, and Vasudhara’s husband is Dzambhala.
Vasudhara’s heart is filled with compassion and loving-kindness toward all beings. She is the embodiment of the boundless generosity which is the first of the six transcendent perfections that are fundamentals for the Bodhisattva path. According to the Buddhist tradition, Vasudhara is able to materialize the wealth for the one who chants her mantra and performs the rituals that invoke the goddess.
The origin of Vasudhara in Buddhism appears in the Buddhist text “The Vasudhara Dharani”. According to a legend “The Inquiry of the Layman Sucandra,” described in the text, an impoverished layman named Sucandra came to the Buddha Shakyamuni and asked if he could give him a way to obtain large amounts of gold, grain, silver, and gems in order to feed his large family and engage in acts of charity with the surplus fortune. Shakyamuni said that the Vasudhara mantra would suit this purpose. He gave Sucandra the Vasudhara mantra and sacred ritual that when followed would result in good fortune and prosperity brought on by Vasudhara herself. Upon commencing the rituals and teaching them to others, Sucandra began to prosper. Noticing his success, the monk Ananda asked Shakyamuni how he had obtained this fortune so quickly. Shakyamuni instructed Ananda to also practice the Vasudhara mantra and the ritual and told him to “impart it to others ‘for the good of many’.
Vasundhara is a bodhisattva-liberator, who gives a person piously acquired wealth. This beautiful goddess also ensures that spiritual wisdom is accompanied by favorable circumstances: high standard of living, longevity, and happiness.
Yellow Tara Symbolism
Yellow Tara is beautiful and attractive. She is youthful as a sixteen-year-old, and her golden body scintillates with radiant light.
Her skin color is golden-bronze. This color is associated with precious metals and symbolizes nobility and generosity.
The goddess has three beautiful smiling faces. Her right face is red, which represents control. The middle face is golden, which represents increase. And her left face is red, which represents compassion.
The goddess is adorned with the five divine silks and the eight jeweled ornaments.
Usually, Golden Tara is depicted seated on a lotus flower base in the lalitasana, or royal pose, with one foot tucked in towards her and the other hanging off the flower base but resting on a small treasure. She can, however, also be depicted in a standing position.
The number of her arms may differ from image to image. She can have as few as two arms and as many as six. The two-armed representations are more common in Tibetan and Indian art, while six-armed representations are almost exclusive to Nepalese art. Although the six-armed image originates in India, they are rare and only a few examples have been found.
Her first right-hand makes the gesture of generosity, while her other two right hands hold the ‘Three Jewels of the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha, – symbolizing the necessity of maintaining the commitments of refuge to the three jewels, and a golden rosary, symbolizing continuous practice and self-examination, vital to enlightenment path.
With her three left hands, she holds a small treasure-vase (a symbol of long life and initiation), an ear of grain (a symbol of abundant harvests and earthly benefits), and a sacred text (a symbol of wisdom).
Representations with more arms, such as the six-armed Nepali representation, also depict Golden Tara as a goddess that is holding a full vase and the Book of Wisdom. With her free hands, she performs mudras. The most common mudra in paintings and figurines featuring Vasudhara is the Varadamudra, also known as the charity mudra, which symbolizes the “pouring forth of divine blessings.”
When depicted with two arms and one face, Vasudhara has a golden body (which symbolizes the earth element) and Ratnasambhava in her crown. Sometimes she is depicted with two or three eyes. The three eyes depiction represents perfect awareness, understanding, compassion, wisdom, and insight into the past, present, and future. Her two hands holding a sheaf of corn represent the process of sowing the seeds of enlightenment. A single wish-fulfilling jewel or a bowl of wish-fulfilling jewels represent wealth and wish-fulfillment.
In Tibetan iconography, the goddess is depicted sitting beside her husband Dzambhala or in union with him. In these cases, she holds a stem with grains in her left hand and a rosary in the right.
In her Tantric depiction, the goddess is red in color, with ornaments of bones holding a stem of grains or precious gems in the right hand, and a skull cup with blood in her left hand. Her red form is also depicted in union with Dzambhala, who is in the same color.
Vasudhara practice requires dedication and self-discipline. Therefore, before starting the practice make sure you’ll be able to invest your time and energy into it.
Before starting your practice, write down your intention on a piece of paper. Speak from your heart. Start with words: “I dedicate my Vasudhara mantra practice to … (describe what you intend to gain)”
- On the first day, you should recite the mantra 800 times.
- Then, every day afterward, recite the mantra 300 times. 100 times in the morning, 100 times in the late afternoon/evening, and the final 100 times before going to bed. Or, you can recite the mantra 300 times all at once at any time of the day.
- It is advisable to get a Vasudhara statuette or Yellow Tara thangka so that you can recite the mantra in front of it.
- While reciting the mantra, visualize Golden Tara and how her blessings are coming to you in a form of golden energy.
- Always express your gratitude to the Goddess before and after practice.
Om Śri Vasudhara Ratna Nidhana Kashetri Soha
Though it may seem like a lot of work, such dedication will definitely pay off. It is said that devotees of this practice will accumulate seven kinds of prosperity – wealth, quality, offspring, long life, happiness, praise, and wisdom. Vasudhara will bless you with enough resources to be able to engage in spiritual practices without worrying too much about your finances. It also believed that this practice leads to spiritual enlightenment.
Short Vasudhara Mantra
If you don’t have enough time or energy to dedicate to the full Vasudhara mantra practice, you can recite a short version of the Vasudhara mantra. The practice of this mantra increases good luck and well-being, as well as helps to overcome difficulties and achieve progress in many directions.
The text of the mantra:
Om Vasudhare Svaha
Recite this mantra 7, 21, or 108 times.