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Monk note: Phowa retreat with HHPCR — 5 Comments

  1. Bhante,

    Very interesting.

    How is this form of meditation supposed to prepare you for death? As opposed to any other form?

    Hope you are keeping well,
    All the Best,
    Bill Z

  2. Well, it is all part of the ‘secretism’, and though in Theravada everything is open to all, I do respect tradition. One is supposed to take the practise and teaching with the master.
    That said, the general idea is nothing really complex. The normal visualisation involves moving the consciousness up and down the central channel. At the point of death, one moves it up and out, to merge with Amidaba Buddha.

    • Yes. It is in the ‘hole’ which is actually a soft area at the crown of the head. The more I think about these Tibetan practises, the more I see their value. Amida Buddha is a quality of Fatih – it is that which is being developed through skillful means. Many people asked questions like why is he red, or how the blessing overflow from him to us through the spot in the crown, or how exactly he helps when we die. HH Phakchok Rinpoche’s answer was usually laughter and ‘you think too much’. At one point he said ‘in the temple the monks and nuns don’t ask like this – we just do it and see what happens’ which struck a chord with me.

      • I enjoyed your acount very much – you are a good writer Achaan – you must do more with this skill! How about a book?
        I have a similar problem with visualising but I think it works just as well with “empty essence” (Sunyatha) above you too. This I can easily rely on and have “faith” in so to say. Different strokes in Tibetan Buddhism and this depends on the understanding of the student. An interesting time, although I struggled with the situation a bit too at times, glad I went…