Bardos Teaching

An Introduction to the Bardo

By Dudjom Rinpoche
A Talk Given on the Occasion of the Empowerment of the Thousand Buddhas Associated with the Sadhana of the Noble Compassionate One, the Lord of Space It has been said that the whole of the Buddha’s doctrine could be summarized in the teaching on the six bardos.
The Buddhadharma is vast and profound, and the many approaches of the various vehicles and cycles of teaching comprise an inconceivable wealth of instruction.

For those who wish to attain the primordial citadel of Buddhahood in the course of a single human life, the practice of these teachings is presented within the framework of the six bardos.

What, therefore, is a bardo? A bardo is a state that is “neither here nor there”: by definition it is something that comes “in between,” an intermediate state. The six bardos are:

  1. the natural bardo of the present life
  2. the hallucinatory bardo of dreaming
  3. the bardo of meditative absorption
  4. the painful bardo of dying
  5. the luminous bardo of ultimate reality
  6. the karmic bardo of becoming

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Teachings on the Bardos given by H.H.Dudjom Rinpoche

This was provided by Rinpoche teaching, California in 1980.

First is the bardo of birth and life; second, the bardo of meditation; 
third, the bardo of dreaming; fourth, the bardo of death 
and dying; fifth, the bardo of the true nature; and sixth, the bardo
 of becoming.

These six can be abridged to four: the bardo of birth 
and life, the bardo of death and dying, the bardo of true nature,
 and the bardo of becoming. Of these four the bardo of birth and
 life is most important because right now we all have a precious
 human birth with the eighteen endowments.
We have available 
to us teachers who are to a certain degree well qualified, and the
teaching we receive is a wish-fulfilling jewel, the very precious 
teaching of the sutras and tantras. It is rare to have such a precious opportunity. Don’t waste your timewhen you have everything going for you. Continue reading

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The Refuge vow

Refuge and Bodhichitta, So, to begin with , what is it that brings us into the Buddha’s teaching? What is the door through which we must enter, the “ mental soil,” so to speak, in which we can plant the seed of Dharma?

It is taking refuge. This marks the difference between a Buddhist and a non-Buddhist, between one who is inside the teachings and one who is outside.
To take refuge is to recognize the Three Jewels of Buddha, Dharma, and Sanghaas one’s unchanging protectors, and to turn to them sincerely and with full confidence. This opens the door of the Dharma at the very outset.

​When we have taken refuge in the Three Jewels, what should our fundamental attitude be? We should understand that the whole of space is pervaded by living beings; there is not one of them that has not been, at one time or another, our father or our mother.

We should recognize that they have been our parents and feel gratitude toward them for the love and kindness they have shown us. We should also realize that all these beings, once our mothers, are sinking in the ocean of the sufferings of samsara.

We should cultivate the attitude of bodhichitta, taking the decision to practice the supreme Dharma for their sake. Bodhichitta is thus the fundamental preparation and the basis of our practice of the path. Continue reading

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