Die with Bodhichitta

"Dying with bodhichitta is the best way to die. Always keep this in mind. Keep repeating, 'I am going to die for the benefit of all beings. This death, and all the Dharma practice, and all the service, that I am doing and have done is for the benefit of all beings.'

"All during the day, every day, you should live with a bodhichitta motivation. Live your life to serve others. Think, 'I'm here to free all beings from samsara, from suffering, and lead them to enlightenment, bringing them happiness in this life and in all future lives and liberation from samsara.'

"Throughout the day, it is very good to think in this way: 'The purpose of my life is not only my own happiness, not only solving my own problems. The goal of my life is to free others from suffering and to cause all the happiness — temporal and ultimate — to benefit others. I'm just one living being among countless others. My importance is small. How much I suffer or how much happiness I achieve is small. There are numberless other beings who want happiness, who don't want suffering and who need my help. Everyone of them is the source of all my past, present, and future happiness. Each of them is the most precious one in my life. How incredibly fortunate I am that I can let go of my self — from which all problems and all the undesirable things come — and instead cherish others and experience their death and all their problems for them. I can let them have all the temporal and ultimate happiness.'

"The key thing is always to make a resolution early in the morning not to be controlled by self-cherishing thoughts, resolving that, 'From now on, until death, especially today, I will never be separated from bodhichitta.' The rest of the day, by putting all your effort into it, try to do all your other activities with that thought. When you create meritorious karma each day, dedicate it to actualizing bodhichitta, both for yourself and for all beings. Dedicate it in order to be able to generate bodhichitta in this life and all future lives. Study the teachings on bodhichitta so you can see that it has great meaning in your life. Knowing the extensive benefits, you can enjoy your life practicing bodhichitta.

"Thinking in this way will enable you to die in the correct way, the most beneficial way. These thoughts make even death — your last experience of life — beneficial for others, which is the most crucial thing.

"So when you find out you are going to die, put all your effort into generating bodhichitta, giving beings all your happiness, merit, and possessions. Meditate that they receive all this, and that it causes them to actualize the path and achieve enlightenment. Do this while generating great loving-kindness, wishing them to have happiness, and wishing that you cause them to have it. Then generate compassion and take on their suffering, their sickness, and especially their death."