"One deity, Chenrezig, embodies all Buddhas; One mantra, the six syllables, embodies all mantras... Knowing the one which liberates all, recite the six syllable mantra." His Holiness Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

Utilizing skillful means enlightened beings developed prayer wheels in response to the needs, capacities and dispositions of different beings. In the actual text Mani Kabum (in the Benefits and Lineage sections) prayer wheels are called Dharma Wheels or Mani Wheels. {See 'Wheels of Great Compassion' by Lorne Ladner}. As stated before, the mantras that fill a Dharma wheel are different than the western idea of prayers, Om Mani Padme Hum is not so much a prayer as it is a resonating frequency mantra that can radiate in harmony with the spiraling DNA rainbow body of light that is our own inner galaxy of pure awareness. When you are intoning Om Mani Padme Hum while spinning a prayer wheel it is important to realize that we are not chanting to an external deity but are reconnecting and resonating to the heart frequency of the Buddha of Compassion within us.
Throughout this website prayer wheel, Dharma wheel and Mani wheel will all be used interchangeably but all refer to the same thing.

"If you have a mani prayer wheel in your house,
your house is the same as the Potala, the Pure Land
of the Compassion Buddha. If you have a prayer wheel next to you
when you die, you don't need Powa.
Having the prayer wheel itself becomes a method
to transfer your consciousness to a Pure Land."
Lama Zopa Rinpoche

Lama Zopa Rinpoche once told me after completing a large prayer wheel that it took a lot of merit for someone to just simply spin a prayer wheel. Sometimes people are so caught up in their conditioning and received concepts that they are lost in dualistic fixations and have become too inhibited to perform such a simple heartfelt action. - Jim McCann

Potala Palace.
Tibetan spinning row of prayer wheels.
The outer manifestation of the inner rainbow galaxy of no-limitations.

Spiraling DNA Body of Light.