It is said in Tibet that: “When you are born you cry, but the whole world is overjoyed. When you die the world cries, but you may find the great liberation.”
It is also known in Tibet as well as many traditions, that before the soul settles into their new state of weightlessness after death, there is a 49-day transition period called bardo. During this time, the soul decides whether to re-incarnate into a new body or stay on in the spirit world longer. Each soul decides on the timing of their next incarnation depending on how attached they are to the physical world. Some souls take longer and some shorter time to re-incarnate. More advanced souls, who have attained liberation form the illusion of life and death may never incarnate into another physical body.
During the bardo state, after the soul leaves their body, it is of utmost importance for those who are still living to let go of their attachments to the person who has moved on. It is important to understand that our grieving is only a projection of our ego-mind which says, “I will not see this person again.” What we truly grieve is the past memories of the times we have spent with the person, and our future that will no longer have this person physically present in our lives. Those past memories do not help the one who has moved on. They pull their energy and attention back into the gravitation field of the physical world.
You might be wondering why am I writing about this?
It was prompted by the recent death of my mother who left her earthly body on October 26th – the day of the Festival of Lights. I decided to take this opportunity to say a few words about death in her memory, and as a reminder to others, because every one of us has or will inevitably be faced with death of a loved one.
I had asked friends to light a candle for my mother after her passing to illuminate her path, and many of you did. I am deeply grateful to you for sending your love and good wishes for her next incarnation. She always had a light-hearted, matter-of-factly attitude towards death and accepted death gracefully.
Perhaps this reminder will also help you to light a candle for your loved ones who have passed on so you can let go of your attachments and illuminate their path by sending them your love and good wishes. Let us together spread more love, understanding, and light to what is unconscious in the world so we can learn to celebrate our life as well as our death.
May the light and blessings of all the awakened ones shower upon you!