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Question about intermediate state (Bardo Thodol)

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  • Question about intermediate state (Bardo Thodol)

    Hello venerable monastics.

    Time ago i read a book called " Liberation Through Hearing During The Intermediate State" or "The Tibetan book of the dead" by Padma Sambhava and i have some cuestions.

    This process really takes place when you die?

    is it posible to help a person who has died or at yourself following this instructions or something like that?

    Is there a book that explain this process without the vajrayana vision with all this deities?

    Thank you and forgive me for my very bad english.

    Metta to all.

  • #2
    This process really takes place when you die?
    Bardo is never mentioned in the Pali canon, so it is quite possible that the Buddha did not teach people about this state. However, in our experience dealing with death and visitation of dead loved ones it seems that there may well be some kind of intermediate state between births.

    is it posible to help a person who has died or at yourself following this instructions or something like that?
    I have never read the text, so I can't really say whether it is a good thing to try. In many Buddhist cultures people believe the last moments of life determine the quality of the next rebirth, but I don't recall reading anything specifically like this in the suttas. What the Buddha did teach many times is that the actions you perform and the intention behind that action are the cause for happiness in this life and in future lives. So keep practicing the 8-fold path and let the end take care of itself.

    Is there a book that explain this process without the vajrayana vision with all this deities?
    Not in the Pali canon (as far as I know!)

    With metta,

    J.R.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for the answers, if I follow the eightfold path the future (dead, intemediate estates or whatever)will be good.

      Thanks and metta to all.

      Comment


      • #4
        Greetings Elias, just came across your message. May be the following books are of interest to you:


        The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying
        SOGYAL RINPOCHE
        Revised and Updated
        Edited by
        PATRICK GAFFNEY AND ANDREW HARVEY


        Preparing for Death and Helping the Dying
        Ven Sangye Khadro
        published by Kong Meng San Phot Kark See Monastry

        This one is free for distribution the first one needs to be purchased.

        May be this will answer some of your questions.

        Namaste
        Hans

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        • #5
          Greetings to all.

          Thank you Hans for the information.
          Bhante Sujato explains in Early Buddhism Course Workshop 2 Session 1 ( 3:18:00) that the pali canon has a few suttas that explain the dead and rebirth is not instantaneously, is a process and an intermediate state exists.

          But Which are this suttas?

          Thanks and Metta to all.

          Comment


          • #6
            Dear Ellias,

            The primary sutta which Bhante Sujato is probably referring to is SN 44.9 (ATI link):
            Originally posted by The Lord Buddha in “The Debating Hall” (SN 44.9)
            “And, Master Gotama, when a being has laid down this body but has not yet been reborn in another body, what does Master Gotama declare to be its fuel on that occasion?”

            “When, Vaccha, a being has laid down this body but has not yet been reborn in another body, I declare that it is fuelled by craving. For on that occasion craving is its fuel.”
            Another, slightly less direct, reference is a simile the Buddha uses for watching beings getting reborn in DN2 (ATI link):
            Originally posted by The Lord Buddha in “The Fruits of the Homeless Life” (DN2)
            ‘Thus — by means of the divine eye, purified and surpassing the human — he sees beings passing away and re-appearing, and he discerns how they are inferior and superior, beautiful and ugly, fortunate and unfortunate in accordance with their kamma. Just as if there were a tall building in the central square [of a town], and a man with good eyesight standing on top of it were to see people entering a house, leaving it, walking along the street, and sitting in the central square.
            Here the simile basically shows a person 'enters a house, leaves a house, walks down the street, hangs out for a bit at the crossroads'. Assuming 'the house' refers to a birth, then it implies a period between births.

            You can read a fuller discourse from Bhante Sujato on this topic here:
            Rebirth and the in-between state in early buddhism

            With metta,
            Ven. Nandiya.

            Comment


            • #7
              Greetings to all.

              Thank you very much to all. This clarifies a lot of my doubts.

              Whit respect & metta.
              Elias

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