Tibetan Buddhist teacher and scholar Tulku Thondup offers in this meditation a path to overcome to the fear of death, something that almost everyone experiences during their lives.  Listen to the meditation and let the image of the Amitabha Buddha bring you a sense of peace and acceptance to triumph over fear and denial.

From "Peaceful Death Joyful Rebirth" by Tulku Thondup, (c) 2005 by Tulku Thondup Rinpoche. By arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Inc., www.shambhala.com.

Photo by Martha Stewart

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Visualization Transcript

How can we deal with fear of death?

If our mind is trained to think and feel positively, then our mind will be imbued with peace and joy. Then there will be no room for fear of death, since fear is just a feeling created by our mind. Also, our life after death will become the beginning of a joyful future as our experiences after death reflect the habits we have cultivated in our mind now.

So in order to train our mind now, we will meditate on Amitabha, the Buddha of Infinite Light.

In the clear and boundless sky in front of you, visualize the Blissful Pure Land, the paradise of the Buddha—vast as the universe, made of colorful light, filled with enlightened beings. It is a world of total peace and joy. Fear and sadness are unknown.

In the middle of this pure land, the Buddha of Infinite Light is sitting on a huge flower, covered by a moon-cushion of light. His body is red, made of luminous light—radiating blessing lights everywhere. Wearing simple ascetic robes, he holds a bowl filled with nectar.

His omniscient wisdom sees all simultaneously. His boundless compassion cares for all with unconditioned love. His boundless power fulfills the needs of all whose minds are open. He is the embodiment of all the pure qualities of the universe. He is the enlightened nature of your own mind, reflected in front of you as the Buddha.

Now sing the prayer with total joy and trust in the Buddha from the depth and wholeness of your heart by thinking: "Oh Buddha of Infinite Light, please heed our prayers. Please lead us to your Blissful Pure Land. Please be one with us." OM AMI-TABHA HRI! (Repeat as many times as you can).

Now visualize and feel that from the Buddha's body, his unconditioned love and omniscient wisdom comes in the form of beams of blessing light—light with blissful heat—and fills your body. All your fear and sadness in the form of darkness in your body are totally dispelled. You are transformed into a body of blessing light and mind of absolute peace. The blessing lights of the Buddha have also purified and transformed every being and the whole universe, as you have.

Finally, relax in the awareness of absolute peace and joy.

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