Our whole existence is determined by the elements: earth, water, fire, air, and space. Through them our body is formed and sustained, and when they dissolve, we die.
Once we have a physical body, we also have what are known as the five skandhas—the aggregates that compose our whole mental and physical existence. They are the constituents of our experience, the support for the grasping of ego, and also the basis for the suffering of samsara. They are:
form, feeling, perception, intellect, and consciousness, also translated as: form, sensation, recognition, formation, and consciousness.
Extracted from ’ The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying ’ written by Sogyal Rinpoche.