Death and the Art of Dying: The Bardo of Letting Go
with Andrew Holecek
December 2 - 3, 2017
According to the Tibetan Buddhist view of death, immediately after you die, there is a gap they call “bardo”. The notion of bardo is the central theme of the Bardo Thodol (lit. “Liberation Through Hearing During the Intermediate State”), also known as the Tibetan Book of the Dead.
In the bardos, the karma that brought us into this life is exhausted and the karma that will propel us into our next life has not yet crystallized. This leaves us in a unique “no man’s land,” a netherworld, where all kinds of miraculous possibilities can materialize. Buddhism asserts that there are more opportunities for enlightenment in these precious stages after death than there are during life.
Bardo of Letting Go Workshop
The bardo of letting go is the first of the three bardos that are experienced as part of dying. In this part of the journey, a person is guided to weaken their exclusive identification with outer form, and strengthen their identification with the formless, which allows one to touch their deathless nature.
This is the guiding view, and all we have to do to die well. We can strengthen this view by understanding the eight phases of the outer and inner dissolutions, and their accompanying signs. These signs arise as physical and mental functions cease, signaling the advancement of death. Studying and trying to develop an understanding of what is said to happen after death will allow us better appreciate the nuances of the experience.
This two-day bardo of letting go workshop will include talks, contemplations, meditations, and videos specifically designed to prepare us. We will learn how to help ourselves – and others – in the incredible transition of death.
All of life can be held within the context of death. By acknowledging and preparing for the end of life now, we will find ourselves living more fully and fearlessly. Join us as we celebrate the preciousness of the human condition, and ready ourselves and others for this final journey.
Learning about the bardos is also more than just learning about death. They are a condensation of the entire path. Studying the bardos not only helps us have a good death, but to lead a good life.
If we’re prepared, we can truly transform death into that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
About the Teacher
Andrew Holecek offers seminars internationally on meditation, dream yoga, and death. His latest book is Dream Yoga: Illuminating Your Life Through Lucid Dreaming and the Tibetan Yogas of Sleep. He is also the author of The Power and the Pain: Transforming Spiritual Hardship into Joy; Preparing to Die: Practical Advice and Spiritual Wisdom from the Tibetan Buddhist Tradition; Meditation in the iGeneration: How to Meditate in a World of Speed and Stress; and Dream Yoga: The Tibetan Path of Awakening Through Lucid Dreaming (audio learning course). Learn more about Andrew Holecek and his work on his website, www.andrewholecek.com