The Mysterious State of Thukdam

You might be busy with stories of a global pandemic and worldwide protesting, but did you catch the story of the Buddhist monk named Ani Tenzin who was found in a state of “thukdam” 2 weeks after her death? Thukdam is a state of meditation monks use around the period of their death. It is a continuation of consciousness after physical death that delays all signs of decay. In other words, your body is dead, but you are still conscious.

Ani, age 82, was found sitting in a meditative posture for what they believe was 2 weeks after her physical death. Although no pulse or breathing remain, she is believed to be in a “holding” pattern of elevated meditation. This is a Buddhist phenomenon of a realised master. “Thuk”, meaning mind, and “dam”, meaning samadhi, or meditative state.

Of course this intrigued my curiosity. I found that this has been going on for some time! A British story from 2016 features the mummified body of a monk in lotus position, at the approximate age of 200. You can read the story here:

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/1660845/ancient-monk-was-still-alive-when-his-200-year-old-body-was-found-buddhists-claim/

According to the article, if you can stay in this elevated meditational state for more than 3 weeks, your body begins to “shrink”, or die. Your body may emanate a rainbow, and you have a “rainbow body”. This is the closest you can get to the Buddha himself. Pretty awesome, if you ask me.

A more recent event from 2018, features a monk who is still smiling, a full two months after his death. They exhumed his 92-year-old body from the coffin in his temple, only to find his smiling face, a sure sign to his fellow monks that he had reached Nirvana, the state in which all sense of self, and the never-ending cycle of birth and death are finished…..aaaahhhhh. You can see his happy self here:

https://www.unilad.co.uk/life/monk-smiles-after-body-unearthed-two-months-after-death/

Apparently, over a decade ago, the Dalai Lama commissioned research on the state of Thukdam. Russian scientists have been studying the minds of Buddhist masters to evaluate how to stabilize and control the mind, as well as to understand the neurophysiological mechanism of meditation in relation to the functioning of the nervous system.

This is all very good news, especially in this chaotic period of human history. If we can nail down what the actual physical and emotional benefits of meditation are, teach it in a global, relatable fashion, and move people towards a common goal of compassion and coexistence, then, we will be able to face the future in a much better light.

Keep sitting and breathing. Have a great week, Cheers, Deb

Mind Melt

NO monocle

Have you experienced this? You remember something distinctly, as do many other people – complete strangers. An event, a time, and the details……only to find out it is completely false. Fake news, as we hear on T.V. There is a name for this, and it’s called “The Mandela Effect.”

“The Mandela Effect” is the term coined by a paranormal consultant named Fiona Broome. She named it so after several people reported remembering the death of Nelson Mandela in jail sometime in the 1980’s, only to find out that he was alive, released from jail, and died naturally in 2013. These people also remembered clips of his funeral on television. Hmmm….what?

Turns out this is not the only event that was remembered and reported incorrectly by many people; people that don’t know each other from around the world. Do you think the Monopoly man from the game Monopoly has a monocle? You probably said “yes”, when in fact he doesn’t. Do you think Snow White’s ugly step-mother said, “mirror, mirror, on the wall”? No, it was, “magic mirror on the wall.” There are several examples of the Mandela Effect, and you can read more about them at: https://theconversation.com/the-mandela-effect-and-how-your-mind-is-playing-tricks-on-you-89544

So, what exactly is going on here? It has been proposed that these memories are glitches in our brain caused by experiences in a parallel universe. This parallel universe is sort of like our present situation, with alternate endings to stories we hear or experience. This would relate to the Matrix movie. There is also the possibility that these alternate endings pop up due to time travelers messing with things, causing a rippling effect which alters us in this time.

Personally, my thought on this is that our brains just don’t always work very well. We have problems remembering things accurately. You can read more on this from a previous blog: https://debhead.home.blog/2019/08/03/are-your-synapses-firing/

Some scientists think we have “source monitoring errors” in which we fail to know if something is true or false. I think if enough people report something inaccurately, and we hear it enough, we will believe it. Now, you know that happens ALL the time. However, if you are of the belief that we can travel through time and alter present events, check out my other previous blog: https://debhead.home.blog/2019/06/11/time-traveler/

Either way, I have come to recognize that my brain may falter when it comes to remembering details accurately. Let me know what you have “remembered” that has come to be false. Take heart, some memories are worth cherishing even if all the details are slightly askew.

Have a great week! Cheers, Deb