Sleeping, Dreaming, and Dying - Table of Contents

An Exploration of Consciousness


264 pages, 6 x 9 inches


ISBN 9780861711239

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eBook Bundle (PDF, epub, mobi)


ISBN 9780861717651

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Foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama 

A Prelude to the Journey    
Charting Ego’s Shadow Zones                  
Cross-Cultural Dialogue and the Mind and Life Conferences                 

Chapter 1: What’s in a Self ?         

A History of the Concept of Self      
Self-Exploration and Modernity     
Science and the Self 
The Self and Humanism      
Non-Self in the West

Chapter 2: Brain’s Sleep   

Sleep in Neuroscience         
Early Ideas    
The Basics of the EEG          
Sleep Patterns          
Characterizing REM Sleep
Dreaming and REM 
Sleep in Evolutionary Perspective 
Why Do We Sleep?   
Dreams in the Tibetan Tradition   
Dissolution in Sleep and Death      
Are There Correlates of Subtle Mind?       
Intention and Effort in Practice     
Sleep, Orgasm, and Death   
Awareness and Discontinuities

Chapter 3: Dreams and the Unconscious          

Psychoanalysis in Western Culture           
Freud and Company
A Topography of the Mind  
Dreaming and the Unconscious     
Dreams, the Royal Road to the Unconscious         
Marie-Josée’s Story  
Beyond Freud           
Is There an Unconscious in Buddhist Teaching?  
On the Complex Inheritance of Mental Tendencies        
Foundation Consciousness and the Unconscious 
Imprints and the “Mere-I”
More on Mere Identities     
Gross and Subtle Mind        
Conventional Designation   
Psychoanalysis as Science? 

Chapter 4: Lucid Dreaming          

Evidence for Lucidity           
How Common Is Lucidity?   
Traits of Lucid Dreamers    
Inducing Lucid Dreaming   
Lucidity and Witnessing      

Chapter 5: Levels of Consciousness and Dream Yoga

The Notion of a Self 
Self and Action         
Motivation for Action Is Mental      
Levels of Consciousness      
Types of Causal Connections          
Foundation Consciousness  
Continuity of Levels 
Mental Factors and Sleep    
Clear Light, Subtle Self        
The Cycle of Embodiments
Dream Yoga    

Chapter 6: Death and Christianity                       

Christianity and the Love of God
Death in the Christian Tradition                
Attitudes Toward Death in the West         
Secular Attitudes Toward Death                

Chapter 7: What Is Bodily Death?

The Western Medical Definition of Death             
A Buddhist Definition of Death                  
Interlude: A Conversation on Body Transplants              
Brain Death  
Brain Correlates of Consciousness             
Alterations of Consciousness          
Epilepsy and Tibetan Medicine      
Indications of Death in the Tibetan Tradition                  
Stages of Death        
Gross and Subtle Levels of Mind                
Gross and Subtle Sexual Intercourse                     
Transference of Consciousness                  
Experimental Occasions for Subtle Mind              

Chapter 8: Near-Death Experiences        

Death as Rite of Passage                 
Exploring the Edge of Death                      
Archaeology of Death Rituals                      
Western Discovery of the Afterlife             
Testimonies and Their Patterns                
Detailed Nature of Near-Death Experiences
Feelings and Sensations                  
Core Experiences                
Company and Well-Being               
Some Materialistic Perspectives
Possession and Epilepsy     
Near-Death Experiences and Buddhist Teachings          
Near-Death Experiences and the Clear Light

Coda: Reflections on the Journey

Winding Down         
What We Learned    

Appendix: About the Mind and Life Institute, Acknowledgments