The Heart Sutra, associated throughout the world with the Bodhisattva Kuan Shi Yin, is chanted in many different styles; some fast, some slow, some with accompaniment, some not. In this version of the Sutra, Kuan Shih Yin is referred to as Kanjizai. The double slashes in the following text represent pauses for drum beats. Individuals demonstrate a considerable diversity in their chanting which can lead to a richness in group practice. You may choose to press the start button to hear one style of chanting the Heart Sutra—the complete text is printed below.
OM MAKA HAN NYA HA RA MITTA SHIN GYO//
Homage to the Great Transcendental Wisdom
KAN JI ZAI BO SATSU GYO // JIN HAN NYA HA RA MITTA//
Kuan Shih Yin, engaging in the illumination of profound transcendental wisdom,
JI SHO KEN GO UN KAI // KU DO ISSAI KU YAKU//
saw the five aggregates all empty, then passed by every kind of suffering.
SHA RI SHI SHIKI FU I KU KU FU I SHIKI//
Shariputra, form is not different from emptiness, emptiness is not different from form.
SHIKI SOKU ZE KU KU SOKU ZE SHIKI//
Form therefore is emptiness, emptiness therefore is form.
JU SO GYO SHIKI YAKU BU NYO ZE//
Sensation, discernment, habitual thought, and knowledge are also like this.
SHA RI SHI ZE SHO HO KU SO // FU SHO FU METSU//
Shariputra, these examples of emptiness are neither created nor destroyed,
FU KU FU JO FU ZO FU GEN // ZE KO KU CHU MU SHIKI//
neither impure, nor pure, neither increased nor decreased.
Therefore, within emptiness there is no form,
MU JU SO GYO SHIKI // MU GEN NI BI ZETS SHIN NI//
no sensation, no discernment, no habitual thought, no knowledge.
no eye, no ear, no nose, no tongue, no body, no mind;
MU SHIKI SHO KO MI // SOKU HO MU GEN KAI//
no color, no sound, no smell, no taste, no touch, no thoughts, no realm of eyes,
NAI SHI MU I SHIKI KAI MU MU MYO//
until, link by link, we come to no realm of knowledge; no ignorance,
YAKU MU MU MYO JIN // NAI SHI MU RO SHI//
also no end of ignorance until, link by link, we even come to no old age and death,
YAKU MU RO SHI JIN // MU KU JU METSU DO//
also no end of old age and death. No suffering, no liberation from suffering, no path.
MU CHI YAKU MU TOKU // I MU SHO TOKU KO//
No wisdom, also no attainment.
BO DAI SAT TA E HAN NYA HA RA MITTA//
Bodhisattvas depend upon this Transcendental Wisdom.
KO SHIN MU KE GE // MU KE GE KO MU U KU FU//
Because mind is no longer an obstacle, fear no longer exists.
ON RI IS SAI TEN DO MU SO // KU KYO NE HAN//
Therefore depart from confusing ideas and find Nirvana.
SAN ZE SHO BUTSU // E HAN NYA HA RA MI TA//
Past, present, and future Buddhas have all depended upon this Transcendental Wisdom,
KO TOKU A NOKU TA RA // SAN MYAKU SAN BO DAI//
and thereby atained perfect universal enlightenment.
KO CHI HAN NYA HA RA MI TA // ZE DAI JIN SHU//
Therefore, be aware that this Transcendental Wisdom is the great extraordinary mantra
ZE DAI MYO SHU // ZE MU JO SHU//
that is brilliant, unsurpassed, unequaled,
ZE MU TO DO SHU // NO JO ISSAI KU//
and able to remove all suffering.
SHIN JITSU! FU KO!//
True! Not False!
KO SETSU HAN NYA HA RA MI TA SHU//
Therefore this Transcendental Wisdom Mantra
SOKU SETSU SHU WATSU//
is recited in this fashion:
GYA TEI! GYA TEI! HA RA GYA TEI! HA RA SO GYA TEI!//
Gone! Gone! Gone to the other shore of enlightenment!
BO DAI SO WA KA! // HAN NYA SHIN GYO
BODHI SVAHA! Heart of Wisdom Sutra