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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What it is for me
This review is for the paperback edition of the book and not the folio edition hardback which is beautifully produced. However it still has the colour plates of a thangka (Tibetan scroll painting) of the deities in the text and a neat metal foil on the cover...but what's inside it?

What isn't inside is the much loved Evens Wentz'sThe Tibetan Book of the Dead:...
Published 18 months ago by Bardo Boy

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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not an easy book to read.
To get an understanding of what dying is by reading this book you must be an already well educated tibetan munk.
Published 11 months ago by Sven.L


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What it is for me, 17 Mar 2013
This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
This review is for the paperback edition of the book and not the folio edition hardback which is beautifully produced. However it still has the colour plates of a thangka (Tibetan scroll painting) of the deities in the text and a neat metal foil on the cover...but what's inside it?

What isn't inside is the much loved Evens Wentz'sThe Tibetan Book of the Dead: Or the After-Death Experiences on the Bardo Plane translation that first captured Western esoteric imagination back in the late 1920's and on into the 60's. People familiar with it's rich evocative language and the religious lilt of the KJV Bible and Jung's introduction to that book maybe disappointed at the difference.

However as Evan's Wentz recognised he was introducing pioneer translation to English speakers he foresaw future advances in translation technique and knowledge. The new translation then comes after a century of scholarship and study in the West of Tibetan language and faith and so is the more technically 'accurate' translation. It is also one that comes with the blessing and advice of people who profoundly understand it's content, context and layers of meaning.

Inside the cover are the full practices to do with the text which a monk or retreatant would study before being introduced to the text we know as 'The Tibetan Book of the Dead' (This books Chapter 10). It is authorised by the Dalia Lama who's introduction about death and dying goes well beyond his usual forwards. Oral instructions were given to the translators by Dilgo Khyentse a great Tibetan Master of the 20th Century which will matter to some readers.

That said it may not the easiest read for general readers uninformed about Tibetan Buddhist traditions and practices. It is primarily an ancient religious text as with similar texts it is a blend of the seemingly obscure and pointedly profound. For some Evan's Wentz book's singular theosophist vision with it's dendrochronological ring of Forwards containing the heat of first encounter between Tibetan's and Europeans may still be a better introduction. For others and I guess especially committed Buddhists this would be much preferred for its mature, accurate, committee led translation coming from Tibetan's themselves.

From a personal point of view both books are useful for all that this translation gains in clarity and comprehensiveness it loses the brio and individuality of the other. Although I've read the whole text I still haven't really got past the first chapter about the 'Preliminary Practices' - but there's much wisdom and poetry in that I'm grateful for. A lot probably depends on the readers experience and interests. That said even with little experience I found it a peaceful companion during the death of a loved one. I took faith from the Tibetan's own faith in the after-death processes and the often repeated phrase 'Do not be afraid'.
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121 of 134 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating spiritual classic, 15 Dec 2005
By A Customer
This is indeed a very important book, with some pleasant illustrations. As an object it is wonderfully presented, the binding, cutting and whatever processes the book goes through have clearly been undertaken with great care or expensive machinery. Few books are as attractive or durable these days. What's really important, however, is the contents. If you believe in the words, they could prepare you for death and what lies beyond it (there are descriptions of the dying process which, if committed to memory, could be extremely comforting when the time comes). If you remain sceptical or follow another faith, relish the spectacular imagery and often beautiful verse in which many passages are expressed.
If I *had* to gripe, it'd be about the review above (below?) which, like many others on Amazon, is opinionated and enthusiastic but rather pointless. "I haven't read it but I bet it's ace" is hardly likely to encourage someone to part with nearly £20 to try a book, is it?
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A moving read, 28 Aug 2009
By 
T. Coyle "The Spirit Keeper" (Wales, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
This is one of those books everyone should read in their lifetime. I found it moving, and so very peaceful and has made me realise death is nothing to fear. Its not an easy book to read without any knowledge of Buddhism, but with my limited amount of knowledge (I'm still learning) I understood the book. Its a book I will re read over the years.
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35 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Book, 11 Oct 2007
By 
A. Beeton "adamblue" (UK) - See all my reviews
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I bought this book when it was first published, out of impulse actually, because of the binding, and I am glad I did because it is a beautiful book to read. Someone once told me you cant read the TBOD without a Master's interpretation or guidance, but this is incorrect; if you are, like myself, interested in a general read to explore an esoteric work yourself, then the the various introductory chapters are more than enough to prepare the reader for the main text.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, 26 Feb 2014
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Lindsay Angus (Plymouth, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
Have been trying to borrow this book from the library for years to no avail. Bought it for my husband - not so easy to read as other books on dying by tibetans - think you need to have read a couple of others to understand it more fully but really comprehensive and everything he thought it would be.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not an easy book to read., 2 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
To get an understanding of what dying is by reading this book you must be an already well educated tibetan munk.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars nice book, 20 May 2014
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This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
nice book ive dipped in and out so far.. its a classic so i wanted to get it and have a look. it recommends how to be, and what to expect I suppose. It can be obvious in some parts but again considered gentle in its approach because of that.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mind.Body.Soul, 12 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
As with all good philosophy - you take from it what you need - and enlightens what you don't know
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Would recommend, 1 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
Great book, good value, lots of information on the subject and a very welcome intellectual Xmas gift for the boyfriend
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, 29 Jan 2014
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S. Tworowski (France) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
Not that easy to read I must say but very interesting of course. I'm glad it's part of my library and I'll go back to it regularly.
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