Bardo is the Tibetan word which means "gap" or "transition". Specifically, it is used to describe the journey a person makes after death but but before taking a new birth. The bardo between death and rebirth is considered an auspicious opportunity for enlightenment. Thus, Tibetan Buddhists offer a 49 day meditation practice called Sukhavati to help guide a deceased person to a higher rebirth.
More generally, a bardo state can refer to any time in a person's life where there is one door closes and there is a waiting for a new door to open. All of us experience such gaps or transitions. We go through man such personal bardo times. Some examples include: the ending of a significant relationship, job loss, graduation from university, moving to a new community, children growing up and leaving home.
Often these life moment's generate anxiety and stress. Yet, it can help to remind ourselves that this is a normal, natural life pattern, the movement from an ending to a beginning, from one place to another, from one chapter to a new chapter and ultimately, from death to life. Remind your self that transition means movement. It's not a dead end.
When we truly know that with every ending there is also renewal,
we begin to relax. Our minds become open to the process of change.
- Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche