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

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

SIXTEENThe GroundWE OFTEN HEAR STATEMENTS LIKE: "Death is themoment of truth," or "Death is the point when we finallycome face to face with ourselves." And we have seen howthose who go through a near-death experience sometimesreport that as they witness their lives replayed before them,they are asked questions such as, "What have you done withyour life? What have you done for others?" All of this pointsto one fact: that in death we cannot escape from who or whatwe really are. Whether we like it or not, our true nature isrevealed. But it is important to know that there are twoaspects of our being that are revealed at the moment of death:our absolute nature, and our relative nature—how we are, andhave been, in this life.As I have explained, in death all the components of ourbody and mind are stripped away and disintegrate. As thebody dies, the senses and subtle elements dissolve, and this isfollowed by the death of the ordinary aspect of our mind,with all its negative emotions of anger, desire, and ignorance.Finally nothing remains to obscure our true nature, as everythingthat in life has clouded the enlightened mind has fallenaway. And what is revealed is the primordial ground of ourabsolute nature, which is like a pure and cloudless sky.This is called the dawning of the Ground Luminosity, or"Clear Light," where consciousness itself dissolves into the allencompassingspace of truth. The Tibetan Book of the Dead saysof this moment:The nature of everything is open, empty and naked like the skyLuminous emptiness, without center or circumference: the pure,naked Rigpa dawns.263

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