The mantra in cyberspace
Cyberspace has been the subject of a blessing by the monks of Namgyal monastery in Tibet (the Dalai Lama's personal monastery) and much use is made of the web by Buddhist and Tibetan groups. The Dalai Lama has pointed out that having Avalokitesvara's mantra on your hard disk is like owning a prayer wheel: the disk spins thousands of times an hour, and just as from a traditional prayerwheel the prayer spins off to purify the surrounding atmosphere.
But it would be much more fun to see it happening, wouldn't it?
I've constructed a virtual prayerwheel array, using a beautiful wheel from the Home Page of the Venerable Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche. Click here to see it, or here to download the array as a standalone application (by Yukino).
Prayerwheels on your Desktop
A Prayerwheel engraved with the mantra 'om mani padme hum' is one of the classic accoutrements of traditional Buddhism. This ancient mantra, attributed to Avalokitesvara, the Buddha of Ultimate Compassion, is usually translated as 'praise to the jewel in the heart of the lotus', and is found all over the Buddhist world on flags, stones and wheels spun by wind, water, fire or by hand. As the wheel spins, the prayer it carries is reeled off into the air and is carried by the wind around the world. Thus a thousand turns of a prayerwheel, by whatever means, is equivalent to saying the prayer a thousand times.