This spiritual handbook provides essential mystical teachings and practices for spiritual practitioners who are facing imminent death. It will also benefit their friends, relatives, and fellow practitioners who may not presently be facing immanent death but wish to be spiritually prepared for it.
The spiritual instructions and practices contained in this guide draw upon the mystical classics of various religions to help you take full advantage of the precious opportunity for Spiritual Awakening which death presents to those who are properly prepared. In particular, this handbook contains three fundamental practices to help you transform your own death from a terrifying ordeal into what the Sufi poet, Rumi, called our "wedding with eternity."
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Although none of us can choose not to die, we can choose how to die. The real question, then, is: When the Angel of Death knocks at your door, how will you greet him? Are you going to receive him as a venerable teacher, or resist him as you would a thief in the night? Are you going to force Death to drag you off to the gallows like a condemned criminal? Or are you going to take Death's hand willingly, as you would that of a Divine Lover who beckons you to one last dance before your present life is over and a new one dawns?
Those who choose the latter course will, in fact, find that death has a second great blessing to confer. Not only does it awaken us to the futility of all worldly pursuits, but, as the Christian mystic, Simone Weil, wrote: "Death will ultimately open for us an instant when, for an infinitesimal fraction of time, pure truth, naked, certain, and eternal enters the soul. I may say that I have never desired any other good for myself."
Indeed, if you think about it you will see that, as a spiritual practitioner, you have actually been trying to 'die' all along. For it is only by dying to your separate self that you can discover the Truth which, as Jesus said, makes us free from all suffering and death forever. And while this spiritual death is not the same as physical death, nevertheless, the passage through Death's Gate will bring you to the very threshold of that other Gate--the Gate of Gnosis-- which leads from form to Formlessness, from the finite to the Infinite. Here, stripped naked and standing between two worlds, as it were, you will find that literally nothing bars the way. At this point (as we shall see) it is simply a matter of recognizing this 'nothing' for what it truly is--Pure Consciousness, Itself. This is why all spiritual traditions have considered physical death to offer a supreme opportunity for attaining the ultimate "death of deaths"....provided, of course, you are properly prepared.
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Book Description Center for Sacred Sciences, 1995. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110962038717