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

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

BARDOS AND OTHER REALITIES 109times, despite all our confusion, we can also be really wise!This shows us what the bardo is: a continuous, unnervingoscillation between clarity and confusion, bewilderment andinsight, certainty and uncertainty, sanity and insanity. In ourminds, as we are now, wisdom and confusion arise simultaneously,or, as we say, are "co-emergent." This means that weface a continuous state of choice between the two, and thateverything depends on which we will choose.This constant uncertainty may make everything seem bleakand almost hopeless; but if you look more deeply at it, youwill see that its very nature creates gaps, spaces in which profoundchances and opportunities for transformation are continuouslyflowering—if, that is, they can be seen and seized.Because life is nothing but a perpetual fluctuation of birth,death, and transition, so bardo experiences are happening tous all the time and are a basic part of our psychologicalmakeup. Normally, however, we are oblivious to the bardosand their gaps, as our mind passes from one so-called "solid"situation to the next, habitually ignoring the transitions thatare always occurring. In fact, as the teachings can help us tounderstand, every moment of our experience is a bardo, aseach thought and each emotion arises out of, and dies backinto, the essence of mind. It is in moments of strong changeand transition especially, the teachings make us aware, thatthe true sky-like, primordial nature of our mind will have achance to manifest.Let me give you an example. Imagine that you come homeone day after work to find your door smashed open, hangingon its hinges. You have been robbed. You go inside and findthat everything you own has vanished. For a moment you areparalyzed with shock, and in despair you frantically gothrough the mental process of trying to recreate what is gone.It hits you: You've lost everything. Your restless, agitated mindis then stunned, and thoughts subside. And there's a sudden,deep stillness, almost an experience of bliss. No more struggle,no more effort, because both are hopeless. Now you just haveto give up; you have no choice.So one moment you have lost something precious, andthen, in the very next moment, you find your mind is restingin a deep state of peace. When this kind of experience occurs,do not immediately rush to find solutions. Remain for a whilein that state of peace. Allow it to be a gap. And if you reallyrest in that gap, looking into the mind, you will catch aglimpse of the deathless nature of the enlightened mind.

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