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

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

308 THE TIBETAN BOOK OF LIVING AND DYINGwere encouraged to practice together and to say, as much aspossible, a mantra such as: OM MANI PADME HUM. This issomething that everyone in Tibet could do and knew woulddefinitely help the dead person, and which inspired them allto an act of fervent communal prayer.The clairvoyance of the dead person in the bardo of becomingis also what makes the practice done by a master or experiencedspiritual practitioner on his or her behalf of such exceptionalbenefit.What a master does is to rest in the primordial state ofRigpa, the nature of mind, and invoke the mental body of thedead person roaming in the bardo of becoming. When themental body comes into the master's presence, through thepower of meditation, he or she can point out the essentialnature of Rigpa. Through the power of its clairvoyance, thebardo being then can see directly into the master's wisdommind, and so there and then be introduced to the nature ofmind and be liberated.Whatever practice an ordinary practitioner can do as wellfor a close friend who has died can, for the same reason, be ofenormous help. You might do the practice, for example, of theHundred Peaceful and Wrathful Deities associated with theTibetan Book of the Dead, or you might simply rest in a steadystate of compassion; especially if you then invoke the deadperson and invite him or her into the heart-core of your practice,it can be of immense benefit.Whenever Buddhist practitioners die we inform their master,all their spiritual teachers, and their spiritual friends, so they canimmediately start practicing for them. Usually I collect thenames of people who have died, and send them to great mastersI know in India and the Himalayas. Every few weeks theywill include them in a purification practice, and once a year in aten-day intensive group practice in the monasteries. 3TIBETAN BUDDHIST PRACTICES FOR THE DEAD1. The Tibetan Book of the DeadIn Tibet, once the phowa practice has been done for thedying person, the Tibetan Book of the Dead is read repeatedlyand the practices associated with it are done. In eastern Tibetwe used to have a tradition of reading the Tibetan Book of the

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