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

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

348 THE TIBETAN BOOK OF LIVING AND DYINGback into that dimension; we awaken, frantic and distracted,in the bardo of becoming in the mental body, taking illusoryexperiences for solid and real just as we have in lives before,and stumbling helplessly, propelled by past karma, towardrebirth.Highly realized beings, however, have awakened in themselvesa perception completely different from our own, onethat is purified, evolved, and refined to such an extent that,while they still dwell in a human body, they actually perceivereality in a totally purified form, transparent to them in all itslimitless dimension. And for them, as we have seen, the experienceof death holds no fear or surprises; it is embraced, infact, as an opportunity for final liberation.THE PROCESS IN SLEEPThe three phases of the process we see unfolding in thebardo states in death can be perceived in other levels of consciousnessin life also. Consider them in the light of whatoccurs in sleep and dream:1. When we fall asleep, the senses and grosser layers ofconsciousness dissolve, and gradually the absolute nature ofmind, we could say the Ground Luminosity, is briefly laidbare.2. Next there is a dimension of consciousness, comparableto the bardo of dharmata, that is so subtle that we are normallycompletely unaware of its very existence. How many ofus, after all, are aware of the moment of sleep before dreamsbegin?3. For most of us, all that we are aware of is the nextstage, when the mind becomes yet again active, and we findourselves in a dream-world similar to the bardo of becoming.Here we take on a dream-body and go through differentdream-experiences to a great extent influenced and shaped bythe habits and activities of our waking state, all of which webelieve to be solid and real, without ever realizing that we aredreaming.THE PROCESS IN THOUGHTS AND EMOTIONSExactly the same process can be recognized in the workingsof thoughts and emotions, and the manner in which theyarise:

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