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  Pali chants[1]  
candle Offering chanting contents:
Shrine Homage
Light Offering
Incense Offering
Flower Offering
notes  •  sources

Bodhi Lankarama Buddhist Temple

entire chant              

[not available]
Shrine Homage (Cetiya Vandanā)[2]
compact view
(Pali: Nārada & Kassapa, 2008, p. 14; Indaratana, 2002, pp. 9–10;[3] English: Gunaratana, 2008, p. 21)
(Rhys Davids & Stede, 1921-25)
For a full definition,
click on a Pali word.
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vandāmi: I pay homage.
cetiya: shrine, stupa.
sabba: every.
Van mi   ce ti yaṃ   sab baṃ  
Vandāmi cetiyaṃ sabbaṃ
I pay reverence to every shrine
sabba: every.
ṭhānesu: at places.
patiṭṭhitaṃ: standing.
sab ba ṭhā ne su   pa tiṭ ṭhi taṃ  
sabba–ṭhānesu patiṭṭhitaṃ
That may stand in any place,
sārīrika: bodily. dhātu: relic.
mahā: great.
bodhiṃ: the sacred Bo tree.
ri ka dhā tu ma bo dhiṃ  
The bodily relics, the Bodhi Tree,
buddha–rūpaṃ: Buddha image.
sakalaṃ: all.
sadā: always.
bud dha paṃ   sa ka laṃ   sa  
buddharūpaṃ sakalaṃ sadā.
And all images of the Buddha.
entire chant              

[not available]
Light Offering (Padīpa Pūjā)
compact view
(Pali & English: Nārada & Kassapa, 2008, p. 13; Indaratana, 2002, pp. 11-12)[4]
(Rhys Davids & Stede, 1921-25;
Buddhadatta, 2003)
For a full definition,
click on a Pali word.
display controls:   Pali syllables   Pali words   English text   glossary
ghanasāra: camphor.
padittena: ablaze.
Gha na rap pa dit te na  
With lights of camphor brightly shining
dīpena: with a lamp.
tama: darkness.
dhaṃsinā: destroying.
pe na   ta ma dhaṃ si  
dīpena tamadhaṃsinā
Destroying darkness here,
ti-: three. loka: world.[5]
dīpa: lamp.
sambuddhaṃ: Perfect Buddha.
Ti lo ka paṃ   sam bud dhaṃ  
Tiloka–dīpaṃ sambuddhaṃ
The three world's light, the Perfect Buddha,
pūjayāmi: I revere.
tamo: darkness.
nudaṃ: dispelling.
ja mi   ta mo nu daṃ  
pūjayāmi tamonudaṃ.
Dispeller of darkness, I revere.
entire chant              

[not available]
Incense Offering (Sugandha Pūjā)
compact view
(Pali & English: Nārada & Kassapa, 2008, p. 13; Indaratana, 2002, pp. 11-12)[4]
(Rhys Davids & Stede, 1921-25)
For a full definition,
click on a Pali word.
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gandha: perfume.
sambhāra: materials.
yuttena: prepared with.
Gan dha sam bhā ra yut te na  
With this incense sweetly scented
dhūpena: with incense.
ayaṃ: this.
sugandha: fragrant.
dhū pe haṃ   su gan dhi  
dhūpenāhaṃ sugandhinā
Prepared from blended fragrances
pūjaye: I revere.
pūjaneyya: entitled to homage.
taṃ: to him.
ja ye   ja ney yaṃ   taṃ  
Pūjaye pūjaneyyaṃ taṃ
Him I revere who is rightly revered,
pūjā: honor.
bhājana: associated with.
uttamaṃ: the highest.
bhā ja na mut ta maṃ  
Worthy of highest reverence.
entire chant              

[not available]
Flower Offering (Puppha Pūjā) compact view
(Pali & English: Nārada & Kassapa, 2008, p. 12; Indaratana, 2002, pp. 11-12)[4]
(Rhys Davids & Stede, 1921-25)
For a full definition,
click on a Pali word.
display controls:   Pali syllables   Pali words   English text   glossary
vaṇṇa: beauty.
gandha: perfume.
guṇa: (good) quality.
upeta: endowed with.
Vaṇ ṇa gan dha gu ṇo pe taṃ  
With these flowers, as long as they last,
etaṃ: this.
kusuma: flower.
santatiṃ: duration.
e taṃ   ku su ma san ta tiṃ  
etaṃ kusuma–santatiṃ
Colorful, fragrant and excellent,
pūjayāmi: I revere.
muni: sage.
indassa: of the lord.
ja mi   mu nin das sa  
Pūjayāmi munindassa
The Sacred Feet on the lotus
sirī: splendor.
pāda: foot.
saroruhe: on a lotus.
si ri da sa ro ru he.  
Of the Lord of sages, I revere.[6]
pūjemi: I revere.
buddhaṃ: (to) the Buddha.
kusumena: with a flower.
-ena: this.
je mi   bud dhaṃ ku su me na ne na  
Pūjemi buddhaṃ–kusumenanena
The Buddha I revere with varied flowers
puññena: with merit.
etena: with this.
ca: and.
hotu: may (there) be.
mokkhaṃ: Release.
puñ ñe na me te na   ca   ho tu[7]   mok khaṃ  
puññena–metena ca hotu mokkhaṃ
By this, my merit, may there be Release.
puppha: flower.
milāyāti: fades.
yathā: as, like.
idaṃ: in this, here.
me: I.
Pup phaṃ   mi ti   ya thā   i daṃ   me  
Pupphaṃ milāyāti yathā idaṃ me
Even as this flower fades away
kāyo: body.
tathā: likewise.
yāti: proceeds.
vināsa: destruction.
bhavaṃ: to become.
yo   ta thā   ti   vi sa bhā vaṃ.  
kāyo tathā yāti vināsa–bhāvaṃ.
So will my body be destroyed.


[1] Bodhi Lankarama's chanting (led by Bhante Ānandajoti Bhikkhu) is excerpted from http://www.bodhilankarama.net/Chanting/03-Bodhi-Puja-09-01-10.mp3. For more information, see the "Acknowledgments."

For web browsers that do not embed mp3 players, a clickable blue "play" icon ([play]) is displayed; click on this icon to popup an mp3 player that will play the selected chant. Note that this page's "LOOP" feature does not work with these browsers.

[2] While not strictly an offering (pūjā), the verse entitled "Cetiya Vandanā" is sometimes grouped with the offering chants (e.g., as in Gunaratana, 2008, pp. 20-1). On this web site, this verse is not included with the other homage (vandanā) chants because those chants have special authority: they directly concern the Triple Gem of the Buddha, the Dhamma and the Sangha; they are chanted at the beginning of most ceremonies (after the refuges and precepts, if undertaken); and, they can be found dozens of times in the Pali Canon itself. The Ceitya Vandanā on the other hand deals with representations of the Buddha (not the Buddha per se); if chanted, is chanted after the other three homages, sometimes before the offering chants (e.g., Ānandajoti, 2008, p. 9; Gunaratana, 2008, pp. 20-1; Indaratana, 2002, pp. 9-10) and sometimes afterwards (e.g., Nārada & Kassapa, 2008, p. 14); and, while this type of homage can be found in the Pali Canon (e.g., DN 16, Ja No. 479), the Cetiya Vandanā verse itself does not appear in the Canon.

The title for this verse, "Cetiya Vandanā," is taken from Indaratana (2002), p. 10 (where it is translated into English, p. 9, as "Salutation to the Pagodas"). Gunaratana (2008), pp. 20-1, provides no specific title for this verse but includes it as the first verse under the general title of "Pūjā" ("Offering"). Nārada & Kassapa (2008), p. 14, head this verse with the English title, "Homage to the Three Symbols." Ānandajoti (2008), p. 9, entitles this "Cetiya–sārīrika–dhātu–mahā–bodhi–pūjā" (which he translates as "Honouring the Cetiyas, Bodily Relics, and Bodhi Tree").

For the purposes of supporting the learning of Pali chants, one modification to the Pali text from the cited sources (Nārada & Kassapa, 2008; and, Indaratana, 2002) has been made. Following Gunaratana (2008), p. 20, the second line's first word (sabbaṭhānesu) has been separated into two words connected with a hyphen (sabbaṭhānesu), so that the second syllable (ba) is metrically lightened. (Alternately, the second syllable could have been directly lightened with a diacritical mark, sabbăṭṭhānesu, but such a change is not seen in any of the referenced chanting books.) This change better reflects what is actually chanted (both here and elsewhere).

[3] The Pali text for this verse, Cetiya Vandanā, is not found in the Pali Canon. However reverence for such artifacts can be found in the Canon.

For instance, regarding the paying of homage at a shrine (cetiya), a canonical passages referencing such can be found in the "Mahāparinibbāna Sutta" (DN 16; D.ii.142), here translated by Vajira & Story (1998):

... and at a crossroads also a stupa should be raised for the Tathagata. And whosoever shall bring to that place garlands or incense or sandalpaste, or pay reverence, and whose mind becomes calm there – it will be to his well being and happiness for a long time.

Likewise, regarding veneration of the Buddha's bodily relics (sārīrika–dhātu) and their associated shrines (dhātu–cetiya), the "Mahāparinibbāna Sutta" (DN 16; D.ii.167-8) concludes (trans. by Vajira & Story, 1998):

	Eight portions there were of the relics of him,
	The All-Seeing One, the greatest of men....
	For thus the relics of the All-Seeing One are best honored
	By those who are worthy of honor  –  by gods and Nagas
	And lords of men, yea, by the highest of mankind.
	Pay homage with clasped hands! For hard indeed it is
	Through hundreds of ages to meet with an All-Enlightened One!

[4] a b c These verses for offerings are not found in the Pali Canon although their practice could be justified on some canonical passages (such as in DN 16, see note [3] above). These verses can be found in a number of traditional chanting books, including: Ānandajoti (2008), pp. 12, 14; Gunaratana (2008), pp. 20-1; Indaratana (2002), pp. 9-12; and, Nārada & Kassapa (2008), pp. 12-14. For this web page, primarily, Nārada & Kassapa (2008) is used for the Pali text and English translation; the Pali and English titles are based on those found in Indaratana (2002).

In terms of the Nārada & Kassapa (2008) Pali text, the following minor modifications have been made for this page:

[5] According to Rhys Davids & Stede (1921-5), p. 301, entry for "Ti–," the tiloka ("three worlds") are: kāma–loka ("world of desire"); rūpa–loka ("world of form"); and, arūpa–loka ("world of formlessness"). Rhys Davids & Stede identify the post-canonical Saddhammopayana as a Pali text that makes use of this term. This term can also be found in the Khuddaka Nikāya's hagiographic Apadāna.

[6] The text used here for the English translation (Ñārada & Kassapa, 2008) of the "Puppha Pūjā" chant's first verse does not readily line up with the Pali text on a line-by-line basis. (Nor do any of the English translations provided by any of the other chanting texts mentioned on this page.) Moreover, no simple shuffling of lines (as is done elsewhere on this site) would remedy the difficulty. Thus, the published loose translation is copied verbatim here. Nonetheless, a more literal translation, paraphrasing the current text, might be:

	Colorful, fragrant and excellent
	flowers, as long as they last, with these
	I revere the Lord of sages'
	Sacred Feet on the lotus.

It might be worth further noting that a significant number of this verse's Pali words are open to multiple meanings and thus different translations may better suit a particular chanter or congregation. For instance, Ānandajoti (2008), p. 12, translates: guṇa as "qualities" (and thus vaṇṇa–gandha–guṇopetaṃ as "endowed with the qualities of beauty and fragrance"); santatiṃ as "long-lasting" (and thus kusuma–santatiṃ as "long lasting flowers"); and, siripāda–saroruhe as "the glorious lotus feet."

[7] Instead of the Pali words, "ca hotu," Ānandajoti (2008), p. 13, has "labhāmi," which he translates as "may I gain." This alternate wording is also reflected in the Bodhi Lankarama chant (led by Bhante Ānandajoti Bhikkhu) used here. The wording "ca hotu" is maintained here for consistency with other texts and recordings. (Note that, in terms of meter, both "ca hotu" and "labhāmi" have three syllables that are equally stressed — light-heavy-light — and thus are chanted in a similar fashion.)


• Ānandajoti Bhikkhu (ed. & trans.) (Sept. 2008). Bodhi Pūjā: Worshipping the Bodhi Tree. Retrieved Oct. 6, 2009 from "Bodhi Lankarama Buddhist Temple" at http://www.bodhilankarama.net/Books/Bodhi-Puja-and-Protection-Chanting.pdf.

• Buddhadatta Mahathera, A.P. (last update: May 5, 2003). Concise Pali-English Dictionary. Retrieved 2009 Oct. 6 from "BuddhaNet/BuddhaSasana" at http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/dict-pe/index.htm.

Bodhgaya News (Last updated: 31 March 2009). "Pali Canon Online Database." Provides search mechanism for the Sri Lanka Tripitaka Project's (SLTP) redaction of the Pali Canon and auxilary works at http://www.bodhgayanews.net/pali.htm.

Bodhi Lankarama Buddhist Temple (10 January 2009). "Bodhi Puja," led by Ānandajoti Bhikkhu. Retrieved 16 May 2009 from Bodhi Lankarama's "Chanting in Pali with English translation" page at http://www.bodhilankarama.net/Chanting/001-Bodhi-Puja.htm.

• Gunaratana, Henepola (compiler) (2008, rev. ed.; "small format" ed.). Bhāvanā Vandanā: Devotions for Meditation. High View, WV: Bhāvanā Society. Available at http://www.lulu.com/content/paperback-book/bhavana-vandana-small-format/4637518.

• Indaratana Maha Thera, Ven. Elgiriye (2002). Vandanā: The Album of Pali Devotional Chanting and Hymns. Retrieved Oct. 6, 2009 from "BuddhaNet" at http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/vandana02.pdf.

N.C. Buddhist Vihara (n.d.). "PIRITH (42min 48sec)." Retrieved 24 May 2009 from "North Carolina Buddhist Viharaya - Pirith & Sutra" at http://www.ncvihara.org/public/pirith.html.

• Nārada Thera & Bhikkhu Kassapa; rev. by Bhikkhu Khantipālo (1963; BPS Online Edition 2008). The Mirror of the Dhamma: A Manual of Buddhist Chanting and Devotional Texts (Wheel No. 54 A/B). Kandy: Buddhist Publications Society. Retrieved Oct. 6, 2009 from "BPS" at http://www.bps.lk/new_wheels_library/wh054.pdf.

• Rhys Davids, T.W. & William Stede (eds.) (1921-5). The Pali Text Society's Pali–English Dictionary. Chipstead: Pali Text Society. A general on-line search engine for this dictionary is available from "U. Chicago" at http://dsal.uchicago.edu/dictionaries/pali/.

• Vajira, Sister & Francis Story (trans.) (1998). Maha-parinibbana Sutta: Last Days of the Buddha (DN 16). Retrieved Oct. 7, 2009 from "Access to Insight" at http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/dn/dn.16.1-6.vaji.html. Used with permission.