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antarābhava (T. bar do'i srid pa/bar do བར་དོའི་སྲིད་པ/བར་དོ་; C. zhongyin/zhongyou 中陰/中有), translated as 'intermediate state," "transitional state," etc., refers to the intermediate state between death and rebirth.[1]

The antarābhava is considered one of "four modes of existence" (catvāro bhavāh), where the other three modes are:[1]

  • birth/rebirth (upapatti-bhava)
  • life (pūrvakāla-bhava)
  • death (maraṇa-bhava)

The existence of an intermediate state between death and rebirth is accepted in Tibetan Buddhism and East Asian Buddhism, but it is not accepted in the Theravada tradition.[1]

In Tibetan Buddhism, the intermediate state, commonly referred as the "bardo" or "bardo state," is regarded as a significant opportunity for liberation, and therefore is the focus of specific practice traditions.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Buswell & Lopez 2014, s.v. antarābhava.