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The Tibetan Book Of The Dead, Transition To The Otherworld, page 4

The Great Liberation upon Hearing: The Bardo Prayers  

Tibetan: Zhi khro dgongs pa rang grol: Bar doâi smon lam    Kalimpong: Mani Dorji, 1979. 2 volumes. I-Tib-1990; 79-905078 [v2, folios 387-395]

The four devotional prayers and verses that constitute The Bardo Prayers  express the very heart of the entire Great Liberation upon Hearing. They are meant to be memorized by the lama and then recited as needed at certain keys points during the longer guidance ceremony. The first, "Prayer Requesting Assistance from the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas," is a humble petition to all enlightened beings of compassion to reach out and comfort those who are dying or who are suffering in the intermediate state. The "Prayer for Deliverance from the Narrow Paths of the Bardo" traces the series of experiences in the Bardo of Reality, requesting that the Peaceful and Wrathful Deities help the deceased to recognize the true nature of the bardo visions. The "Prayer for Protection from Fear in the Bardo" is a general appeal to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas for compassionate refuge from the fear and anxiety of death and transition. Finally, "The Root Verses of the Six Bardos" encapsulates the essential instructions on the bardos which are included in the actual body of the bardo texts as poetic verses to be read by the lama to the dying person.

The Mirror of Mindfulness: A Clarification of the General

Aspects of the Bardo Experience

Tibetan: Bar do spyiâi don thams cad rnam par gsal bar byed pa dran paâi me long  

Author: rTse le sNa tshogs rang grol (b.1608)

   Solu, Nepal, 1983. N-Tib-4294; 84-901065.

The Mirror of Mindfulness is a classic Tibetan text on bardo by Tse-le Natsok Rangdröl (rTse le sna tshogs rang grol, b.1608), a famous Tantric master of the Kagyu-pa order who was believed to be the incarnation of the eighth century translator Vairochana. The notion of incarnation or tulku (sprul sku) is a distinctively Tibetan idea that after death an advanced spiritual personality will reincarnate in a form that is of special benefit to the people of a particular area. Renowned as a tulku at an early age, Tse-le Natsok Rangdröl was favored by the people of his day as a religious virtuoso, and thus, was permitted to study with some of Tibet's most famous scholar-practitioners of the Kagyu and Nyingma sects. In his amazingly lucid and concise text, The Mirror of Mindfulness, Tse-le Natsok Rangdröl combines the wisdom of his own profound insight with that of the spiritual masters from whom he had learned so much to produce an instructional manual that anyone can utilize. His commentary on the bardo states--together covering the whole cycle of living, dying, the after-death state, and rebirth--relates meditation and religious practice to the bardos in a way that can be easily applied to each practitioner's individual level of meditative skill. The Mirror of Mindfulness, therefore, serves as a practical guidebook on how human beings, whatever their religious background, can best transform their lives and prepare for death by taking advantage of the opportunities that each bardo presents.

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