Graceful Entry: Preparing for a Good Rebirth
August 14–21, 2020
Note: This program is being rescheduled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please see updates about SMC’s response to the pandemic here.
The silence and majesty of the Colorado Rockies provides the ideal backdrop for exploring the Buddhist approach to the end of life. This seven-day program is the second in a series of three retreats designed to give you a complete preparation for death by understanding the three death bardos or “transitional processes.” Each retreat is a stand-alone program. This means you can enter the series at any time.
This program will examine the karmic bardo of becoming, which constitutes the majority of our after-death experience. It’s a fluid and volatile time, when the winds of habit blow us involuntarily into our next birth. With preparation, it transforms into the bardo of opportunity, where we can become anything we want by waking up to the experience and taking control. This Eastern body of wisdom will be augmented with Western medical, legal, and logistical approaches to the end of life. The uniqueness of the retreats is their comprehensive nature – no stone is left unturned.
Learn what to do before, during, and after death – for yourself and for others – from a spiritual and practical perspective. By the end of this program you will discover the death of death, and how to step back into this world – and eventually the next – with unshakeable confidence for what lies ahead.
Some Topics We Will Cover
- Types of experiences to expect
- Best practices to prepare
- Lucid dreaming and lucid dying
- How this bardo occurs in daily life
- Understanding the power of habit/karma
- The importance of emptiness
- The Six Realms and voluntary rebirth
- The role of Phowa and the Pure Lands
- Transforming fear and understanding the niyamas
- Meeting your maker – the samskaras
- What is it that reincarnates?
- Why do we reincarnate?
- How do the masters experience this bardo?
- The problem of proof – are these teachings really true?
Who Should Attend?
This program is for anyone seriously wanting to prepare for the end of life. It is a no-nonsense deep dive into the profound teachings of the bardos. While it describes the spiritual preparation from a Buddhist perspective, the material is tailored for anyone with an open mind. This retreat is for those interested in exploring meditations that are designed to prepare you for death, and to “die before you die” — to discover states of mind that do not dissolve at the end of life. This program is also for those wishing to help others during the dying process, either personally or professionally, from both a spiritual and practical perspective.
Andrew Holecek has completed the traditional three-year Buddhist meditation retreat and offers seminars internationally on meditation, lucid dreaming, and dream yoga. He is the author of The Power and the Pain; Preparing to Die; and Meditation in the iGeneration, as well as the audio learning course, Dream Yoga: The Tibetan Path of Awakening Through Lucid Dreaming. His most recent book is Dream Yoga: Illuminating Your Life Through Lucid Dreaming and the Tibetan Yogas of Sleep.
His work has appeared in Lion’s Roar, Parobla, Tricycle, Light of Consciousness, Utne Reader, and other periodicals.