Laura Guerra from Mexico writes: “Around 1999, I took a course on Adulthood & Old Age as part of my Psychology studies in Mexico. Our dear teacher Patricia handed out a few chapters from the book for us to read and discuss at class. It was mind blowing. The book presented to me a whole new world of possibilities into looking at life and mind.
From then on I set myself the task to find that book and buy it but as it turned out, it was hard to find. I remembered finding it once at a book store when I was really really penniless and I could not afford it. I almost cried when I had to put it back on the shelf and walk away. But I did not stop looking for it. It became a habit: every time I was at a bookstore I would search for it. But no luck.
On January 1st, 2002 (yeah, i remember the date!) I was walking around in a nearby city I had traveled to with my mum to spend New Year’s eve, got into a bookstore and set myself again to find it & I did! It was hiding under a pile of other books. I finally had money to buy it. I was over the moon! I read it and kept reading it for years.
4 years later I took a sabatical and went to India & Nepal where I was able to study Buddhism and attend 2 retreats. Now I am a Buddhist practitioner and it is so clear to me that it was The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying that planted the seed (at least in this life) for me to make a whole set of efforts to encounter myself with the precious teachings.
Years later my father-in-law passed away in Argentina (where my husband is from). But we were in Mexico and so we needed to immediately fly to Argentina for the funeral. My husband was devastated… I remember to be looking around the flat in a rush trying to see what to put on the luggage and suddenly I saw it! I felt the need to grab it before hurrying to the airport. When in there, my husband (who is not Buddhist) told me he needed to know how his father was, wherever he was. I grabbed my luggage and took the book out and gave it to him. He did not stop reading it for the whole wait in the airport and during the long flight to Argentina. At first he cried. But then he focused on being strong, not sad, to be able to say goodbye and helping his dad to have a sadless and peaceful trip. He even asked me to do a puja for him and so we did. The book gave my husband a peace of mind that he really needed and has stayed with him ever since.
I have had that book with me for over 11 years now and after everything that I have experienced thanks to it, The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying is to me like a compound of blessings. They are all there and it is my journey, my growth and my karma that unlocks them. Similar to the experiences that took me to finding it. The book was there, resting at a bookstore shelf but I needed to make an effort to find it and afford it. Now the book is here, at my book shelf, but still it is the effort I put into my own mind that allows me to have a whole new inspiration every time I read it.
As you can see, it is a precious book to me. Changed my life completely and I am looking forward to the changes the Book will keep on triggering in me and others!! (in fact, I am going to start reading it again now!)
I have an eternal gratitude towards Sogyal Rinpoche for sharing such blessings with the world and for everyone that has worked and supported him in this endeavor. May you all have a long and healthy life!