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When you recite this verse, it is useful and quite effective to do a visualization if possible. Visualize in front of you a host of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, the fully enlightened beings. You can imagine them in many manifestations and forms, including great spiritual teachers of the world whom you admire and have great devotion to; for example, Jesus Christ or Mohammad. From the Buddhist point of view, there is no contradiction in including these great beings as objects of the Refuge visualization. Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, in their service to sentient beings, can take many different forms or manifestations, many different emanations corresponding to the diversity of needs and mental dispositions of sentient beings. What is more important is to visualize around you all other sentient beings and reflect on their existence. Just as you have an innate desire and a fundamental aspiration to find happiness and overcome suffering, and just as you have the right to fulfill that aspiration, so do all other sentient beings Thinking in such a way, try to develop a strong and powerful compassion and love towards these sentient beings. It is with these thoughts and visualization that you should do the recitation and take Refuge in the Three Jewels. Let us now recite the first verse together three times.

"With the wish to free all beings I shall always go for refuge
to the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha until the attainment of full enlightenment."



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