This course is an introduction to the Tibetan Book of the Dead.
It is not a book of the dead or for the dead in the way of its Egyptian equivalent. It is a book of, and about living. It is an ancient book. It was written in 8th century Tibet. Before that, it was an oral tradition passed down by shaman which its heritage stems. but its heritage and information go much further back and are based on shamanic knowledge. It became part of the Bon religion which is still practiced today. When Buddhism entered Tibet Bon, and the Tibetan Book of the Dead it became part of that discipline helping to make Tibetan Buddhism unique.
Soon after the Buddha’s passing it was recognised that we experience different states of existence each day of our lives, and after, when we die. These s an intermediate, transitional, or liminal states are called Bardos. Our waking life is a Bardo state, our dreaming at night is a Bardo state, if/when we meditate, that is a Bardo state.
In the Tibetan world view, there is no destructive death at the end as is in the west. Instead, there is reincarnation, rebirth, a transition into a new life. What we do in this life, the good and bad deeds, or Karma influence the rebirth of our soul and how it will continue to seek enlightenment.
According to Tibetan tradition, after death and before one’s next birth, when one’s consciousness is not connected to a physical body it passes through a number of states or Bardos, that it goes through. Some are similar to those reported by people who have had a Near-Death Experience. The Tibetan Book of the Dead
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