The-Tibetan-Book-of-Living-and-Dying

realjannaweiss

The-Tibetan-Book-of-Living-and-Dying

HELPING AFTER DEATH 317

dead person, simple ways they too can use, instead of sitting

hopelessly going over again and again the moment of death in

silent frustration and self-recrimination.

In the case of a sudden death, the survivors may often

experience wild and unfamiliar feelings of anger at what they

see as the cause of the death. Help them express that anger,

because if it is held inside, sooner or later it will plunge them

into a chronic depression. Help them to let go of the anger

and uncover the depths of pain that hide behind it. Then they

can begin the painful but ultimately healing task of letting go.

It happens often too that someone is left after the death of

a loved one feeling intense guilt, obsessively reviewing mistakes

in the past relationship, or torturing themselves about what

they might have done to prevent the death. Help them to talk

about their feelings of guilt, however irrational and crazy they

may seem. Slowly these feelings will diminish, and they will

come to forgive themselves and go on with their lives.

A HEART PRACTICE

I would now like to give you a practice that can truly help

you when you are suffering from deep sorrow and grief. It is

a practice my master Jamyang Khyentse always used to give

to people who were going through emotional torment or mental

anguish and breakdown, and I know from my own experience

it can bring enormous relief and solace. The life of

someone teaching in a world like ours is not an easy one.

When I was younger there were many moments of crisis and

difficulty, and then I would always invoke Padmasambhava, as

I still always do, thinking of him as the same as all my masters.

And so I discovered for myself how transforming this

practice is, and why all my masters used to say that the practice

of Padmasambhava is the most useful when you go

through turmoil, because it has the power you need to take

on and survive the chaotic confusion of this age.

So whenever you are desperate, anguished, or depressed,

whenever you feel you cannot go on, or you feel your heart is

breaking, I advise you to do this practice. The only conditions

to the effectiveness of this practice are that you need to do it

with all your might, and that you need to ask, really to ask,

for help.

Even if you practice meditation, you will have emotional

pain and suffering, and a lot of things from your past lives or

this one may emerge that will be difficult to face. You may

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