Our body begins to lose all its strength. We are drained of any
energy. We cannot get up, stay upright or hold anything. We can
no longer support our head. We feel as though we are falling,
sinking underground, or being crushed by a great weight. Some
traditional texts say that it is as if a huge mountain were being
pressed down on us and we are being squashed by it. Our complexion
fades and a pallor sets in. Our cheeks sink and dark stains appear
on our teeth. It becomes harder to open and close our eyes.
These are signs that the earth element is withdrawing into the
water element...the water element is more manifest. So in the
mind is a vision of a shimmering mirage.
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From Tibetan Book of Living & Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche