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

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

THE PRACTICES FOR DYING 245"As the music or the tape of the teaching goes on playing,drift off to sleep in it, wake up in it, doze in it, eat in it. . .Let the atmosphere of practice totally pervade this last part ofyour life, just as my aunt Ani Rilu did. Do nothing but practice,so that it even continues in your dreams. And just as shedid, let the practice be the last and strongest memory andinfluence on your mind, replacing in your mindstream a lifetime'sordinary habits.'And as you feel yourself nearing the end, think only ofDilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, with every breath and heartbeat.Whatever thought you die with, remember, is the one thatwill return most potently when you reawaken in the bardosafter death."LEAVING THE BODYNow that the bardo of dying dawns upon me,I will abandon all grasping, yearning, and attachment,Enter undistracted into clear awareness of the teaching,And eject my consciousness into the space of unborn Rigpa;As I leave this compound body of flesh and bloodI will know it to be a transitory illusion.At present, our body is undoubtedly the center of ourwhole universe. We associate it, without thinking, with ourself and our ego, and this thoughtless and false associationcontinually reinforces our illusion of their inseparable, concreteexistence. Because our body seems so convincingly to exist,our "I" seems to exist and "you" seem to exist, and the entireillusory, dualistic world we never stop projecting around uslooks ultimately solid and real. When we die this whole compoundconstruction falls dramatically to pieces.What happens, to put it extremely simply, is that consciousness,at its subtlest level, continues without the body and goesthrough the series of states called "bardos." The teachings tellus that it is precisely because we no longer have a body in thebardos that there is no ultimate reason to fear any experience,however terrifying, that may happen to us after death. Howcan any harm, after all, ever come to a "nobody"? The problem,however, is that in the bardos, most people go on graspingat a false sense of self, with its ghostly grasping at physicalsolidity; and this continuation of that illusion, which has beenat the root of all suffering in life, exposes them in death tomore suffering, especially in the "bardo of becoming."

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