Buddhist Death Rituals
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Nothing has more power than the stark fact of death to challenge our sense of embodied selfhood and our deep-seated need to cling onto life at all costs, sometimes even in the midst of much physical and mental pain. And nothing is more important for the Buddhist practitioner who accepts that there is continuity of consciousness after death than to understand and come to terms with that process of dying and its aftermath, gateway to the next life with its ever-fluctuating cycles of pleasure and pain. And for those left behind there is the strong wish not only to come to terms with the loss, but even more to perform actions that aid and guide the consciousness to a happy state of rebirth within the six realms.
Buddhist death rituals are the outcome of a profound understanding of the entire process of dying, death, intermediate state (Tibetan bardo), and rebirth and aim to steer the dead person’s mind away from confused projections that are regarded as the result of intentional action or...
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