Audio for Bardo part 3 (click to play or right click to download)

Hence, when I say death is a delusion I do not mean it is a delusion that happens either to the body or to the soul. I call it a social delusion – one which we cultivate in every child. We indoctrinate every child with the idea, “You are going to die, and this is how death occurs.” So by the time a child grows up he has learned all the symptoms of death, and when these symptoms apply to him he just closes his eyes and becomes unconscious. He becomes hypnotized.

It is to counteract this that Dynamic Meditation has been created – to show you how to enter death consciously. In Tibet this process is known as the Bardo. Just as we hypnotize a man at the time of death, in Tibet they take the man through de-hypnosis. The loved ones gather near the dying man and suggest to him, “You are not dying, because no one has ever died.” They give him this kind of anti-hypnotic suggestions. There will be no weeping, no wailing; nothing else will be done. People will gather around him and the village priest or monk will come and say, “You are not dying, because no one has ever died. Depart consciously, wakefully and fully relaxed. You will not die, because no one ever dies.”

The person closes his eyes and the entire process is narrated to him: “Now this will leave you, now that will leave you, and this…but you will remain. Now the life energy has left your legs, now it has left your hands, now you cannot speak” – and so on – “and yet you are.” And all around him these suggestions are given. The suggestions are simply anti-hypnotic. That means, they are meant to ensure that the person does not grab hold of the social delusion that he is on the verge of dying. In order to prevent him from doing that, they use the Bardo as an antidote.

The day this world has a healthier attitude toward death, there will be no need for the Bardo. But we are a very unhealthy people; we live in great delusions, and because of these delusions, the antidote becomes necessary.

I believe there should be a wide application of the Bardo in this country as well. Whenever anyone dies, all his loved ones should make an attempt to shatter his illusion that he is dying. If they could keep the person awake and remind him at each and every point…and there are many such points, because when the consciousness withdraws from the body, it does not leave all at once; all of the body does not die at the same time. The consciousness shrinks withinward; bit by bit it leaves each part of the body. It withdraws in various stages, and all stages of this contraction can be recounted to the dying person as a means of keeping him conscious.

From Osho, And Now and Here, Chapter 10

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