Self-doubt can riddle us with guilt and paralyze our actions.
We are all valuable people in different ways yet we sometimes forget. Opening the heart and focusing outward towards others brings confidence and courage to face adversity without drowning.
Even the thought, “we are all the same in wanting to be happy and not hurt” can elevate our mood, particularly if it is repeated like a mantra. Care brings care. It ripples outward and inward creating safety. Anxiety and fear are reduced. Meaning is cultivated. This leads to well being free of guilt.
As we mature we learn to recognize self-doubt as “old stuff” that is not functional any longer, not that is ever was functional. This is self-compassion and care of the highest order.
While beginning my study of ‘The Tibetan Book of The Dead,’ I came across the word, Bardo. Bardo means a gap or transition. A space between.
I think of Bardo as being like a moment when you step toward the edge of a precipice; such a moment, for example, is when a master introduces a disciple to the essential, original, and innermost nature of his or her mind. The greatest and most charged of these moments, however, is the moment of death. ~ “The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying” by Sogyal Rinpoche.
There are many bardos. Our life is full of these junctures: bardos of sleep, bardos of dreams to name only a couple. The space or gap between death and rebirth is a bardo and probably the one most people think of first. It is vital to understand this word when we think of life and death.
When we see that death is a space between, a temporary place where we pass through, then the fear is lessened. What is within that space is of importance.
This small article is not an exhaustive study of the ‘gaps’. It is only a light touching of the meaning so we can move forward with some understanding as we dig deeper into Bardo Thodal.
Death is not the end but the beginning of another chapter. So let us live with love and compassion during this life and have no regrets when the bardo of dying arrives. We can and should make use of our life to find meaning now.
Awareness is the basis, or what you might call the “support,” of the mind. It is steady and unchanging, like the pole to which the flag of ordinary consciousness is attached.
When we recognize and become grounded in awareness of awareness, the “wind” of emotion may still blow. But instead of being carried away by the wind, we turn our attention inward, watching the shifts and changes with the intention of becoming familiar with that aspect of consciousness that recognizes
Self-deception seems always to depend upon the dream world, because you would like to see what you have not yet seen rather than what you now seeing. You will not accept that whatever is here now is what is, nor are you willing to go with the situation as it is. Thus, self-deception always manifests itself in terms of trying to create or recreate a dream world, the nostalgia of the dream experience.
When talking about others is motivated by thoughts of ill will, jealousy, or attachment, conversations turn into gossip. These thoughts may seem to be subconscious, but if we pay close attention to our mind we’ll be able to catch them in the act. Many of these are thoughts that we don’t want to acknowledge to ourselves, let alone to others, but my experience is that when I become courageous enough to notice and admit them, I’m on my way to letting them go.
Treat your anger with the utmost respect and tenderness, for it is no other than yourself. Do not suppress it—simply be aware of it. Awareness is like the sun. When it shines on things, they are transformed. When you are aware that you are angry, your anger is transformed. If you destroy anger, you destroy the Buddha, for Buddha and Mara are of the same essence. Mindfully dealing with anger is like taking the hand of a little brother.