Homage to the 21 Taras
Commentary following each verse
is by Bhikshuni Thubten
Chodron from her book, How
to Free Your Mind: Tara
the Liberator.
Images sent by Lucia Puga
Copyright by Sravasti Abbey
Tara Swift and Heroic
1. Homage to Tara swift and fearless,
With eyes like a flash of lightning,
Lotus- born in an ocean of tears,
Of Chenresig, three worlds’ protector.
Tara swift and Heroic is red in color. Her
specific function is to control, and there is
a ceremony in which a practitioner
invokes this Tara to turn back the power of
others who are trying to exert harmful
power over us. We can reverse that
power or turn it away by requesting Tara’s
Tara White as the Autumn Moon
2. Homage to you whose face is like
One hundred autumn moons gathered
And blazes with the dazzling light
Of a thousand constellations.
This Tara is called Tara White as the Autumn
Moon. Like a hundred luminous autumn
moons, she is radiant white, indicating that
she liberates sentient beings by peaceful
methods and can purify all the mental
afflictions that keep them bound in cyclic
Golden Tara
3. Homage to you, born from a gold-blue lotus,
Hands adorned with lotus flowers,
Essence of giving, effort, and ethics,
Patience, concentration, and wisdom.
Golden Tara, Giver of Supreme Virtue is
gold with a bluish tint, and her specialty is
prolonging life and increasing resources,
wisdom, and merit.
Tara, the Victorious Ushnisha of Tathagatas
4. Homage to you who crowns all Buddhas,
Whose action subdues without limit;
Attained to every perfection,
On you the bodhisattvas rely.
Tara, the Victorious Ushnisha of Tathagatas
has a crown protuberance, or ushnisha, on
the top of her head. Its cause is a
bodhisattva’s great accumulation of merit on
the path to Buddhahood. She is gold in
color, and her specialty is to neutralize
poison, increase life, and counteract
premature death. She can stop accidents
and untimely death—anything that might
cause us to die before our full life span, as
conditioned by our previous karma, has
been lived out.
Tara Proclaiming the Sound of Hum
5. Homage to you whose Tuttara and Hum
Fill the realms of desire, form and space.
You crush seven worlds beneath your feet
And have power to call all forces.
Tara Proclaiming the Sound of Hum, or Tara
Summoning the Three Worlds is gold in
color and slightly wrathful. Her specialty is
influencing and subjugating. This verse
praises her ability to suppress adverse
Tara Victorious Over the Three Worlds
6. Homage to you adored by Indra,
Agni, Brahma, Vayu and Ishvara,
Praised in song by hosts of spirits,
Zombies, scent-eaters, and yakshas.
This Tara is called Tara Victorious over the
Three Worlds. She is ruby red, although in
some cases she is reddish-black. Her
specialty is to purify obscurations and
negativities. Here we praise her because the
worldly gods offer their respect and service
to her.
Tara Crushing Adversaries or Crushing Disputants
7. Homage to you whose Trey and Pey
Destroy external wheels of magic.
Right leg drawn in and left extended,
You blaze within a raging fire.
Standing amidst a raging fire, Tara Crushing
Adversaries is black and fierce. Her
specialty is powa—the transference of
consciousness to Akanishta pure land at the
time of death.
Tara Who Crushes All Maras and Bestows
Supreme Powers
8. Homage to you whose Ture destroys
The great fears, the mighty demons.
With a wrathful frown on your lotus face
You slay all foes without exception.
Starting with this eighth Tara, we praise the
fierce sambhogakaya (resource body of a
Buddha) aspects. She is golden in color and
sits on a crocodile. Fierce, her specialty is
the completion stage practice of Highest
Yoga Tantra.
Tara Granter of Boons/Tara Wheel Governing and Granting
All Desires
9. Homage to you beautifully adorned
By the Three Jewels’ gesture at your heart.
Your wheel shines in all directions
With a whirling mass of light.
Tara Granter of Boons is ruby red. This
verse praises her hand gestures; her left
hand is in the mudra or gesture of the Three
Jewels. The thumb and ring finger touching
symbolizes uniting method and wisdom on
the path, and the three upward fingers
represent Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha,
the three refuges. Her specialty is
Tara Dispelling All Sorrow/Tara the Conqueror of
the Three Worlds
10. Homage to you, radiant and joyful,
Whose crown emits a garland of light,
You, by the laughter of tuttara,
Conquer demons and lords of the world.
Tara Dispelling All Sorrow is red, and her
specialty is destroying maras, controlling the
world of sentient beings, and fulfilling all
wholesome wishes. Tara will help us fulfill
our virtuous aspirations by instructing us on
how to create the causes for happiness,
liberation, and full enlightenment. Her ritual
is for entering the mandala.
Tara Summoner of All Beings, Tara Dispeller of All
Misfortunes, Tara the Treasure of Wealth
11. Homage to you with power to invoke
The assembly of local protectors.
With your fierce frown and vibrating hum,
You bring freedom from all poverty.
Tara Dispeller of All Misfortune is the color of
darkness. Her specialty is to increase
enjoyments and wealth and to eliminate
poverty. Here Tara is praised because she
can activate the ten directional protectors
who are inclined toward virtue and are
leaders of other spirits.
Tara Giver of All Prosperity, Tara of Auspicious
12. Homage to you with crescent moon crown,
All your adornments dazzling bright.
From your hair-knot Amitabha
Shines eternal with great beams of light.
Tara of Auspicious Light is gold, and we
praise her crown ornaments. From her
crescent moon crown ornament, white light
radiates and eliminates sickness, suffering,
sorrow, poverty, and depression. Following
this, yellow light radiates from her crown
ornament and performs the action of
increasing, enhancing sentient beings’ life
span, merit, wisdom, and good qualities.
Tara the Ripener, Tara Bestower of Maturity
13. Homage to you who dwells in a blazing wreath
Like the fire at the end of this age.
Your right leg outstretched and left drawn in,
Joy surrounds you who defeats hosts of foes.
Ruby red, Tara the Ripener is standing, and
her specialty is to subdue hindrances and to
protect from fear and danger. She is
completely confident and free from all
anxiety and fear. The verse praises her
fierce posture of standing in a blazing
Tara the Wrathful Summoner, or Shaking, Frowning Tara
14. Homage to you whose foot stamps the Earth
And whose palm strikes the ground by your side.
With a wrathful glance and the letter hum
You subdue all in the seven stages.
Tara the Wrathful Summoner is stamping her
foot, saying, “Enough with the obstacles to
liberation and enlightenment! Enough with
the suffering of sentient beings! I’m going to
destroy these!” Her body is made of black
light, and she stands amidst a protective
blaze of wisdom. Forming a protective circle
of light, she destroys interferences to the
flourishing of the Dharma and interferences
to the happiness and well-being of sentient
Tara the Great Peaceful One
15. Homage to the blissful, virtuous peaceful one,
Object of practice, nirvana’s peace.
Perfectly endowed with soha and om,
Overcoming all the great evils.
Tara the Great Peaceful One is white in color.
There’s an external cleansing or purifying
ritual that goes with her practice, and her
specialty is to pacify destructive karma that
causes suffering and prevents realizations of
the path to enlightenment. The verse praises
her speech and her dharmakaya (truth body)
mind. All her actions are done within the
peace of nirvana.
Tara, Destroyer of All Attachment
16. Homage to you with joyous retinue,
You subdue fully all enemies forms.
The ten letter mantra adorns your heart,
And your knowledge hum gives liberation.
Coral red, she amplifies the power of
mantras and cuts harmful thoughts that
impede the increase of positive energy. This
verse praises the activity of both her
peaceful and fierce mantras. When she
teaches the Dharma through the action of
her speech, all afflictions are pacified. This
doesn’t mean that Tara teaches and
afflictions magically vanish. Rather, from our
side, we sentient beings respond to the
teachings and put them into practice. While
Tara can guide and instruct us, we need to
make effort to cease our afflictions and
develop our good qualities.
Tara Accomplisher of All Bliss
17. Homage to ture with stamping feet,
Whose essence is the seed-letter hum.
You cause Meru, Mandara and Vindhya,
And all three worlds to tremble and shake.
Tara Accomplisher of All Bliss is orange, and
her specialty is to bind thieves and eliminate
the power of black magic mantras. This
verse praises her fierce activity of shaking
the three worlds—below, on, and above the
earth. From the primordial sound hum
appears ture, which means Tara, and her
pounding feet make everything in the
external world tremble. This indicates her
power, the power of a Buddha’s enlightening
Tara the Victorious
18. Homage to you who hold in your hand
A moon like a celestial lake.
Saying tara twice and the letter pey,
You dispel all poisons without exception.
Tara the Victorious is white, and her
specialty is to dispel diseases caused by
nagas, such as leprosy, tumors and boils.
She also pacifies diseases caused by
poisons—toxins in the environment, air
pollution, and food poisoning. This verse
praises her activities that dispel the poisons
of the world and the environment.
Tara Consumer of All Suffering or Tara Invincible
19. Homage to you on whom the kings of gods,
The gods themselves and all spirits rely.
Your armor radiates joy to all;
You soothe conflicts and nightmares as well.
She is white and her specialty is to free from
poison. This verse praises her activity of
dispelling conflict, bad thoughts, and
nightmares. Relying on this Tara when we
are depressed or if we have suicidal
thoughts is very effective in overcoming
such disturbing emotions and thoughts.
Tara Source of All Attainments
20. Homage to you whose eyes, the sun and moon,
Radiate with pure brilliant light;
Uttering hara twice and tuttara
Dispels extremely fearful plagues.
Tara Source of All Attainments is orange and
grants the power to make oneself invisible.
This verse praises her ability to dispel fevers
and epidemic diseases. Just as some
illnesses drag on, so too cyclic existence
drags on and flares up. She frees us from
both. “Uttering hara twice” means reciting
the fierce mantra, om nama tare namo hare
hum hare soha, and “uttering tuttara” means
reciting the peaceful mantra, om tare tuttare
ture soha.
When we are ill, relying on the fierce and the
peaceful aspects of Tara and reciting their
mantras are helpful. This meditation is good
for illnesses such as cancer, AIDS, new
diseases, environmental pollution, and
illnesses that are difficult to cure.
Tara the Perfector
21. Homage to you, adorned with three natures
Perfectly endowed with peaceful strength.
You destroy demons, zombies, and yakshas;
O Ture, most exalted and sublime!
Tara the Perfector is white, and her specialty
is taking practitioners to Akanishta Pure
Land in this very life. This verse praises her
activity of subduing evil spirits and zombies.
Her three natures are her body, speech, and
mind appearing as om at her crown chakra,
ah at her throat chakra, and hum at her
heart chakra. These pacify internal poisons
such as the afflictions, and external
interferences such as non-human beings
and spirits who take away the power of
medicine, the power of our body, or the
power of food. This Tara is very effective in
dispelling mental illness due to spirit

Homage to the 21 Taras - Bhikshuni Thubten Chodron