Sogyal Rinpoche was raised in Tibet by some of this century's most accomplished Buddhist masters. Living in exile in India, he received a Western-style education, culminating in studies at New Dehli University and Cambridge. Currently, he travels and lectures throughout the world and is the founder and spiritual director of Rigpa, an international network of Buddhist groups and centers.

In this illuminating spiritual classic, revised and updated with a new introduction, Sogyal Rinpoche interprets The Tibetan Book of the Dead by offering an overview of the practice of meditation; the nature of the mind; evolution, karma, and rebirth; impermanence; the spiritual path; and many other subjects.

The section on death and rebirth is masterful. Sogyal Rinpoche's explanations of the states of consciousness after death are remarkably resonant with the accounts given by those who have survived near-death experiences. Equally helpful are the author's suggestions on the care of the dying. He states that a common-sense approach and a sense of humor are crucial, along with a firm intention not to preach to the dying. The spiritual practices of listening and compassion are mandatory. Oftentimes, people near death can be our teachers. Sogyal Rinpoche concludes: "There is no greater gift of charity you can give than helping a person to die well."