Do you ever want you had a handbook for life? Something you could rely on for the answers on how to live a fulfilled, effective and pleased life?
Religious beliefs and spirituality have actually long tried to offer a roadmap for souls looking for a meaningful life. And the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, written by Sogyal Rinpoche in 1992, might simply be one of the most essential guides to living a better life. The book presents the mentors of Tibetan Buddhism.
When I first checked out the book 20 years back, I was dealing with the passing away and thought it would help me to support them, along with myself later on in life, when death ended up being more of a possibility. However I quickly discovered it is a book about the death of the unreal and is very much a book that assists you to truly live. It marked a turning point in my life, where I committed deeply to really living a spiritual life instead of just having the ideas of one.
Sogyal Rinpoche is a world-renowned Buddhist teacher. Joy is Up to You While the objective of the book is to support individuals to die a great death and to assist each of us experience a tranquil death that will lead to a favorable next life, the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying also has numerous amazing teachings on how to live a delighted life. It teaches us about the interplay of life and death and is a spiritual classic for all applicants on a path to living a full and delighted life.
Sogyal Rinpoche’s book has been described as having the power to touch the heart and awaken the consciousness. In this tome he explores: the message of impermanence; development, karma and rebirth; in addition to the nature of the mind and how to train the mind through meditation. The Tibetan Dzogchen master shows us how to follow a spiritual course in the contemporary world and offers fantastic mentors on the practice of compassion; along with methods of supporting the passing away, consisting of particular spiritual practices for you to utilize at the moment of death.
Death can be a challenging shift, however it need not be.
A Serene Death In his foreword to the book, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama says:
As a Buddhist, I see death as a regular procedure, a truth that I accept will take place as long as I stay in this earthly existence. Knowing that I can not escape it, I see no point in worrying about it. I tend to consider death as resembling changing your clothes when they are old and broken, rather than as some final end. Yet death is unpredictable: We do not understand when or how it will take place. So it is just reasonable to take particular preventative measures before it really happens. Naturally, most of us want to pass away a peaceful death, but it is also clear that we can not want to die in harmony if our lives have actually had lots of violence, or if our minds have mainly been upset by emotions like anger, attachment, or worry. So if we wish to die well, we should learn how to live well: Hoping for a peaceful death, we should cultivate peace in our mind, and in our lifestyle.
Living a tranquil life
is the essential to having a peaceful death. Here are a couple of important teachings from this comprehensive, practical and extensive handbook on how to live life.
1. Slip Out of the Noose of Your Habitual Nervous Self
The hard knocks of life can turn us into rigid, tight-lipped, and tense people. You just have to enjoy the grey-faced, black-clad commuters to see this. I participated in a retreat some years back with another Dozghen master, Namkhai Norbu, and he said the most significant problem with Westerners is that we do not understand how to relax. Even when we believe or feel we are unwinding, typically we are not. In truth, we are degrees and degrees far from being relaxed, and it can take years of practice to discover the art of real relaxation. This stunning teaching (described in the excerpt listed below) gives us such a clear photo and direction on how to attain this state of pure relaxation, just like a cat asleep on its back; paws floating in the air above, blissfully surrendered to the minute.
Above all, be at ease, be as natural and spacious as possible. Slip silently out of the noose of your regular distressed self, release all grasping, and relax into your real nature. Consider your ordinary psychological, thought-ridden self as a block of ice or a slab of butter neglected in the sun. If you are feeling difficult and cold, let this aggression melt away in the sunshine of your meditation. Let peace work on you and allow you to gather your scattered mind into the mindfulness of Calm Abiding, and awaken in you the awareness and insight of Clear Seeing. And you will find all your negativity disarmed, your aggressiveness liquified, and your confusion vaporizing gradually like mist into the huge and stainless sky of your outright nature.– Sogyal Rinpoche, The Tibetan Book of Living and Passing away
Imagine your unfavorable feelings melting off you, like ice melting in the sun.
2. Know Yourself
So much of Buddhism stresses discovering the ageless, that is, what lies below the ‘incorrect’ self, and how to let go of all that overloads us and causes us to forget what is genuine and currently there. To be with ourselves in those quiet moments is necessary to spiritual awareness and healing.
Without our familiar props, we are confronted with simply ourselves, a person we do not know, an unnerving complete stranger with whom we have been living all the time but we never really wished to fulfill. Isn’t that why we have tried to fill every minute of time with noise and activity, nevertheless boring or insignificant, to ensure that we are never ever left in silence with this stranger on our own?– Sogyal Rinpoche
Being comfy with ourselves, in stillness, is how we come to really understand ourselves.
These ancient teachings continue by urging us to understand the extensive simplicity and ease of spirituality. It is something deeply natural that belongs to everyday life.
3. Spiritual Reality is Common Sense
Spiritual fact is not something fancy and esoteric, it remains in reality profound good sense. When you understand the nature of mind, layers of confusion peel away. You don’t actually “become” a buddha, you simply cease, slowly, to be deluded. And being a buddha is not being some omnipotent spiritual superman, however ending up being at last a true person.– Sogyal Rinpoche
My instructors in India frequently say that spirituality is about moving from simply existing, to in fact living. This is living without the mental clutter; the continuous dissection of life, so that when we are consuming a mango, for instance, we fully taste and experience that mango. We are not suggested to be unpleasant, baffled, or mired in mental debris. It is our birthright to be peaceful and material. And this is for everyone, not just a few enlightened ‘picked ones’. Each one of us can reach a state of awakened consciousness.
We all deserve to be free from suffering and mental clutter.
4. Meditation Unknots the Mind
The book reveals the unbelievable power meditation has on the mind, as exampled in the following quotes:
Commit the mind to confusion and we understand only too well, if we’re honest, that it will become a dark master of confusion, proficient in its dependencies, subtle and perversely supple in its slaveries. Commit it in meditation to the task of freeing itself from illusion, and we will find that, with time, patience, discipline, and the best training, our mind will begin to unknot itself and know its necessary bliss and clearness.– Sogyal Rinpoche
The gift of learning to practice meditation is the best present you can offer yourself in this life. For it is just through meditation that you can carry out the journey to discover your real nature, therefore find the stability and confidence you will require to live, and die, well. Meditation is the roadway to knowledge … Quietly sitting, body still, speech quiet, mind at peace, let your thoughts and emotions, whatever occurs, come and go, without holding on to anything.– Sogyal Rinpoche
Commit your mind to meditation and it will start to unknot itself and discover necessary bliss.
5. Absolutely Nothing Ever Works Out as You Desired
I have an everyday physical suggestion of the knowledge of this next quote from the book. Each one of my 4 children was unforeseen. Regardless of the best strategies and safety measures, I have four gorgeous beings who have changed my life in fantastic ways and I was absolutely helpless in stopping the force of the universe that created them.
Preparation for the future resembles fishing in a dry gulch; absolutely nothing ever works out as you wanted, so give up all your schemes and aspirations. If you have got to consider something– Make it the uncertainty of the hour of your death.– Sogyal Rinpoche
There is fantastic freedom in releasing that which you can not control.
6. Welcome Impermanence and Humility
What is born will pass away, What has actually been collected will be distributed, What has actually been built up will be exhausted, What has been built up will collapse, And what has been high will be brought low.– Sogyal Rinpoche
It can be deeply humbling to think about that a person day we will pass away and that there is absolutely nothing, not one thing, we can do to avoid this. We are absolutely impotent and powerless against this overall certainty. In truth, death is the one thing we can be sure about in life.
This world can seem marvellously convincing up until death collapses the illusion and evicts us from our hiding location.– Sogyal Rinpoche
I keep in mind some years earlier, walking in New york city with my sibling and looking up at the World Trade Centres; so much steel, standing invincible, at such an unbelievable height. It was a breathtaking building and construction and it made me ponder how living in a man-made environment makes you forget how unimportant you are. In some way your ego becomes overblown, knowing that all that is around you was made by man. When you go to or live in the excellent forests, amazing canyons or traverse the magnificent ocean; completely at the will of the wildest nature, you have a lot more accurate sense of your location in the world. This humbleness and regard for the forces of the universe engenders thankfulness and wonder. When we live from this place of humility and reverence, we open ourselves to greater inspiration and life ends up being extraordinary.
“‘Anicca’, indicating the impermanence of all things, is a liberating and humbling principle.
7. The Optical Deception of Separateness
A human is part of a whole, called by us the “Universe,” a part restricted in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest– a sort of optical deception of his awareness. This deception is a kind of prison for us, limiting us to our individual desires and to affection for a couple of individuals nearest us. Our job needs to be to totally free ourselves from this jail by expanding our circles of compassion to embrace all living animals and the entire of nature in.– Sogyal Rinpoche
Learning to accept ourselves as a part of a whole offers us a higher capacity for empathy.
While this is just a tiny taste of this incredible book, if you consider these mentors, your life may shift in amazing ways and you most likely will discover new life as the old dies away. For me, this last quote sums up the most essential message of its extensive knowledge:
How hollow and futile life can be when it’s established on a false belief in connection and permanence.