** If you see your Guru as a Buddha, you will recieve the blessings of a Buddha ** If you see your Guru as a Boddhisatva, you will recieve the blessings of a Boddhisatva ** If you see your Guru as a friend, you will only receive the blessings of a friend **

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Bardo Teachings Part 5

Bardo Teachings Part Five

How to Take this into the Path

As for how to take the first bardo of the time of death into the path:

the signs of the gradual dissolution may come earlier,

but however they arise—earlier or later, gross or subtle—

do not be anxious or afraid.

As stated in Nāropa's Earlier Text,

"When the signs of death are complete,

rest the mind, meditate as before,

and engage the luminosity."

As Nāropa's Earlier Text explains,

when the signs of death are complete,

rest the mind and practice as before,

and you should definitely engage luminosity.

With the joyful thought, "Now, I will soon

realize the luminosity of the dharmakāya,"

you should gradually recognize it

and do not become distracted.

Just as when you grasped the luminosity before,

realize it by means of holding entirely and the final dissolution.

Properly incorporate practices such as these at this time.

The practice of "holding entirely" is as follows:

Visualize yourself as the deity, which is the commitment being (samayasattva), and in your heart, visualize the wisdom being (jñānasattva). Inside the heart of the wisdom being deity is a symbol or syllable, which is the concentration being (samādhisattva). First, the commitment being dissolves from above and below into the wisdom being. Then the wisdom being dissolves into the concentration being. Finally, the concentration being dissolves from above and below into emptiness, whereupon you rest in inseparable emptiness and luminosity.

The practice of "final dissolution" is as follows:

Light radiates out from the concentration being at your heart, and the maṇḍala, entire external world, and sentient beings dissolve into the concentration being at your heart. After that, you as the commitment being dissolve from above and below into the wisdom being at your heart, which in turn dissolves into the concentration being, which in turn dissolves into emptiness, whereupon you rest in inseparable emptiness and luminosity.

In particular, when the three appearances dawn as clear light,

you will be able to rest on the view that the guru introduced to you.

At the time of the luminosity of death, the mind and wind

dissolve into the central channel at the heart,

whereupon the fabrication of dualistic appearances will subside,

like in a cloudless sky, which nonetheless appears.

At that time, superior practitioners with some experience and prior familiarity

will feel as though they are meeting with an old acquaintance

or like a traveller returning to their hometown.

Although someone who recognizes that luminosity may be able to rest in equipoise,

unless you have rested on the view which is free from superimpositions earlier in life,

you will not be able to realize the nature of reality at that time.

So in this life, you must determine the view of emptiness,

and combine that view with great bliss in meditation.

In this way, you should definitely make effort at realizing

the son-like luminosity, or the luminosity of the path.

By most accounts it is said that

on the basis one recognizes mother-like luminosity at the time of death,

and while on the path, the luminosity on which one meditates day and night

is son-like luminosity.

However, as stated by Jetsun Marme and others,

The luminosity of the nature of reality of all phenomena

is called mother-like luminosity, which has the five purities.

Due to the interdependence of these five purities,

the luminosity that dawns in meditation is said to be son-like luminosity.

These two luminosities have a connection of cause and result.

Now, the moment you awaken, gather the winds into the central channel,

and meditate on the four emptinesses.

When you are in deep sleep, if you are able to mix with luminosity,

then through the force of the winds, you will be able to mix

the mother-like and son-like luminosities at the time of death.

If you are able to do this, then subsequently when the bardo appears,

you will undoubtedly recognize the bardo.

This is the supreme method for recognizing the bardo.

Regarding the completion of the dissolution discussed before:

According to the Kālacakra Root Tantra,

When an individual dies,

the nectar that descends from the moon

and the nectar that flows up from the sun meet,

whereupon consciousness will join with the nature of becoming.

The white element at the crown takes the form of a HAM syllable.

Having the nature of water, it will melt downward.

The red element at the navel has the form of a short A.

Having the nature of fire, it blazes upward.

Both drops mix at the heart, etc.

According to the Treatise on the Six Dharmas,

"At the moment of the death of a practitioner,

the faculties and elements will dissolve,

the moon, sun, and winds will dissolve in the heart,

and a variety of yogas and meditative concentrations will dawn."

At this time, the channels, winds, drops, mental capacity,

and purities will all dissolve into the central channel at the heart,

whereupon meditative concentration will arise

conjoined with emptiness, luminosity, and great bliss.