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.
It is not required that you have attended the first bardo weekend programs to attend this one. If you have not attended, simply let us know when you register, and we will provide you with some readings that will give you enough of a background to fully engage with this program on the bardo of dharmata.
Although there are no prerequisites or reading assignments required for attendance to the bardo programs, for those that are interested, there are several resources:
Andrew’s own book, “Preparing To Die: Spiritual and Practical Preparation from the Tibetan Buddhist Tradition” is a great companion book resource for the program.
For the academically inclined, Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche’s “Mind Beyond Death,” and Francesca Fremantle’s “Luminous Emptiness” are indispensible. For a more accessible study, Sogyal Rinpoche’s “The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying” is without peer. “Journey of the Mind” by Thrangu Rinpoche is pithy and practical, as is Chökyi Nyima Rinpoche’s “Bardo Guidebook” and “Peaceful Death, Joyful Rebirth” by Tulku Thundop Rinpoche.
The Padmasambhava Meditation Center is located in Denver, Colorado, near Denver University. It is a non-profit organization established and directed by H.E. Chhoje Rinpoche, who is a recognized lineage holder of both the Nyingma and Kagyu schools of Tibetan Buddhism. This beautiful center is dedicated to the practice and study of meditation in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition.
They celebrated their grand opening on March 16, 2014. The building, formerly a church, has been transformed it into a magnificent dharma center. The Center serves as the North American seat for Rinpoche’s activities.
The main shrine room feature three large, highly blessed, exquisite Buddha statues – Buddha Shakyamuni, Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava) and Mother Tara, as well as magnificent thanka paintings. For seating, there are gomdens, zabutons, a few zafus and many chairs available. (You may wish to bring your own cushion.)
The address is 1900 South Cook St. Denver, CO 80210. Free parking is available in a parking lot and on the streets surrounding the center.
You are responsible for your own lodging and transportation. However, the Padmasambhava Center has listed on their website information about airport transfers, as well as lodging and restaurant options that are convenient to the center.