Does purification cause bad things to happen, and do we need to keep regretting the same things?

Jun 14, 2021



Hello Robina, 


I was wondering if saying the Vajrasattva mantra for purification causes “bad” things to happen? I have no formal training yet in karma, but a nun told me that when “bad” things happen, its ok because it clears that karma. 


I know karma is a very complex topic, but just wondering as I’m constantly saying the mantra. Or does it just purify the karma straight out? I have been searching books, google etc. and can’t find an answer.


Thanks Robina,



Dear F, wonderful you’re doing the mantras! Yes, so much purification.


No, it doesn’t actually directly cause bad things to happen. But it can trigger things to happen. It’s a bit like when you go to the gym to get fit, you come home with some pain, don’t you? And you don’t worry about it, you know it’s a good sign. Same here, but it’s the mental gym. And it’s good pain! 


So it might manifest by thinking your anger is getting worse: it’s not, you’re just seeing it, that’s all. Or, indeed, difficulties might arise. 


So see them, as Lama Zopa Rinpoche says, as “the dirt coming out.”






Thank you, Robina. Yes I just thought as the mantra is a way of purifying karma, and the only way I know of doing that is to have a less than fortunate event happening to “balance it out.”


And I just felt these events were happening more now, maybe as a result of the mantras purifying qualities. I’m not feeling any extra disturbing emotions, but a lot of unfortunate events have been happening. Most likely just a coincidence.



That can happen, for sure, F.


Is it difficult for you? Are you managing? 





Oh yes, definitely thanks Robina. Doing the Twenty-one Praises to Tara really helps, gives me strength. I just thought maybe if I stop the Vajrasattva mantra I might get a break, as I’m still a junkie who only likes the good things!



I see, F. 


Glad you’re doing okay. But try to see it all as getting rid of the rubbish, if you can. There is so much long-term benefit to the mantra. 


Anyway, you decide: trust your wisdom. But be brave as well!





Thanks Robina. Yes I will think that way, and be brave and think of the long term benefits. I feel better now about the Vajrasattva mantra. 


Thank you so much X



Good, F. Keep moving! 


Love to you, Robina





Dear Robina


I hope this finds you well. I am sorry this question is so prosaic, but can you tell me please why we need to keep doing Vajrasattva practice for the same negative action. If, once we have finished the practice, we are completely purified and there is “not one atom left,” why do we need to keep purifying the same thing?


I am finding I keep repeating the same things from my past, but I keep wondering if this is the right way to do the Vajrasattva practice?


Thank you so much

With love




It’s a good question, L!


The thing is, purification of all the delusions and the karmic imprints is gradual. But it’s also the power of our optimism, our own mind, that is what purifies, so thinking that it’s all gone, every atom, etc. is part of the process. 


Of course we must remember the various things we’ve done to harm others; and then we’d always say “and everything else I’ve ever done since beginningless time to harm others, all my broken vows, etc., etc.” knowing that we’ve done all of these things countless times.


Doing the practice with enthusiasm, with sincerity – each of the four steps – is powerful for our mind. 


Eventually, of course, we only finally purify everything once we’ve cut the root of all the problems, all the process of karma, when we’ve realized emptiness.


So, one step at a time!




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