Main CategoriesTibetan BuddhismPadmasambhava and the Nyingma School Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, The

Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, The

Product no.: 0-06-250834-2
This acclaimed spiritual masterpiece is widely regarded as one of the most complete and authoritative presentations of the Tibetan Buddhist teachings ever written.

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Publisher's Synopsis

A manual for life and death and a magnificent source of sacred inspiration from the heart of the Tibetan tradition, The Tibetan Book Of Living and Dying provides a lucid and inspiring introduction to the practice of meditation, to the nature of mind, to karma and rebirth, to compassionate love and care for the dying, and to the trials and rewards of the spiritual path.

"Sogyal Rinpoche... has delivered the Tibetan equivalent of The Divine Comedy. One could imagine that this is what Dante might have written had he been a Buddhist metaphysician rather than a Christian poet."      ~New York Times Book Review

"His down-to-earth tone, peppered with songs and poetry from Buddhist sages, takes away much of the intense fear of death and makes it seem like an old friend."       ~Los Angeles Times

“A magnificent achievement. In its power to touch the heart, to awaken consciousness, [The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying] is an inestimable gift.”      ~San Francisco Chronicle

"An indispensable hospice classic, thanks mainly to its uncredited ghostwriters, Andrew Harvey and Patrick Gaffney, who gave fluidity and structure to Rinpoche's vast input."       ~Mandala Books


"A dying person most needs to be shown as unconditional a love as possible, released from all expectations. Don't think you have to be an expert in any way. Be natural, be yourself, be a true friend, and the dying person will be reassured that you are really with them, communicating with them simply and as an equal, as one human being to another.

It is essential that we care enough to try, and that we reassure that person that whatever he or she may be feeling, whatever his or her frustration and anger, it is normal. Dying will bring out many repressed emotions: sadness or numbness or guilt, or even jealousy of those who are still well. Help the person not to repress these emotions when they rise. Be with the person as the waves of pain and grief break; with acceptance, time, and patient understanding, the emotions slowly subside and return the dying person to that ground of serenity, calm and sanity that is most deeply and truly theirs.

Don't try to be too wise; don't always try to search for something profound to say. You don't have to do or say anything to make things better. Just be there as fully as you can. And if you are feeling a lot of anxiety and fear, and don't know what to do, admit that openly to the dying person and ask his or her help. This honesty will bring you and the dying person closer together, and help in opening up a freer communication. Sometimes the dying know far better than we how they can be helped, and we need to know how to draw on their wisdom and let them give to us what they know."

Sogyal Rinpoche was born in Tibet and raised by one of the most revered spiritual masters of this century, Jamyang Khyentse Ch”kyi Lodr”. With the Chinese occupation of Tibet, he went into exile with his master, who died in 1959 in Sikkim in the Himalayas. After university studies in Delhi and Cambridge, England, he acted as translator and aide to several leading Tibetan masters, and began teaching in the West in 1974.

Editor Harvey, Andrew
Coeditor Gaffney, Patrick
Author Rinpoche, Sogyal
Book Type Trade Paperback
Page Count 425 pp.
Publisher HarperCollins 1994
Gold Medal

Gold Medal


  Gold Medal Essential Reading

Browse these categories as well: Padmasambhava and the Nyingma School, Bon and Dzogchen Shamanism, Vajrayana and Crazy Wisdom Masters, Western Buddhism, Karma and Reincarnation, Death, Grief and the Afterlife, Gold Medal Essential Reading

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