Classic and Contemporary Buddhist Works

Wholesome Fear - Preface

Transforming Your Anxiety About Impermanence and Death

Preface

In our busy lives, we may not give much thought to our deaths and, indeed, we may be uncomfortable even thinking about death. Perhaps we feel it is too depressing and fear that thinking about death will make us sad; or maybe we fear that thinking about death will take all the joy out of living. Yet in truth, when we actively think about death and prepare for our own deaths, the opposite actually happens: we connect more to the peace, fulfillment, and happiness available in our lives. What’s more, our fear of death starts to disappear.

This book contains Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s essential advice for the time of death and for finding the deepest fulfillment in life. It provides a plethora of practical advice to prepare for your own death— starting now! You will also gain knowledge of the heart practices useful at the time of death, as well as practices that can help others who are dying.

For those who would like to go further with this material, the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT) publishes an expanded version of this book under the title Heart Advice for Death and Dying. In addition, a companion volume called Heart Practices for Death and Dying offers traditional Tibetan Buddhist practices to benefit the dying and the dead. Both are available from the FPMT at www.fpmt.org/shop.

A book such as this cannot be created without the help of many people. We extend our deepest thanks to Venerable Tenzin Chogkyi for creating the original outline of the book, to the creators and editors of the Discovering Buddhism program and to the Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive for providing source material, to Venerable Constance Miller and Sherry Tillery for their editorial feedback, and to Josh Bartok of Wisdom Publications for his work in creating this final version that you hold in your hands. We especially thank Kathleen McDonald for her beautiful teachings which provide the introduction to this work, and for her skillful presentation of the meditations at the end of the book. And from the bottom of our hearts we thank Lama Zopa Rinpoche, who, out of his great compassion and kindness, has made these essential heart instructions available for the benefit of all. We hope this book brings everlasting happiness to sentient beings everywhere.

Gyalten Mindrol
FPMT International Office
Portland, Oregon, USA

 

How to cite this document:
© Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Wholesome Fear (Wisdom Publications, 2010)

Creative Commons License
Wholesome Fear by Lama Zopa Rinpoche is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at http://www.wisdompubs.org/book/wholesome-fear.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://www.wisdompubs.org/terms-use.