The phurba (Eng. ritual dagger, Sanskrit kilaya) is an extremely sacred ritual implement of great power and meaning. It is essential for practitioners of Vajrakilaya, as the phurba represents the profound activities of compassion, which naturally manifest from enlightened wisdom mind when all obscurations have been purified.
Simply having the phurba removes inner obstacles. For dharma practitioners in general who have faith and trust in the secret mantra path, a phurba placed on one’s shrine will remove obstacles in one’s life and particularly will increase the great strength of loving kindness and compassion.
The three faces of the phurba represent the three kayas of empty essence dharmakaya,
luminous-clarity sambogakaya and manifest great compassion nirmanakaya. The three blades are the manifest pure nature of the three poisons; ignorance, desire and anger. The sea serpent head represents the unchanging strength of compassion for all sentient beings that is the inherent expression of mind's nature. Just as a great sea serpent will never release it’s prey once it has taken hold of it, in the same way the great compassion of the buddha vajrakilaya will never release sentient beings from his great love and compassion. Such is the profound inner meaning of secret mantra.
A phurba should be consecrated by a qualified lama with substances such as frankincense, mustard seed, the vajrakilaya mantra, a blue or black ribbon and with the power of Samadhi having summoned the wisdom-deity to remain present.