Milarepa, the 11th century Tibetan poet, saint and wild yogi, said:
“Like a madman, I have no hope. Like a lion, I have no fear.”
Trungpa Rinpoche came out this this lineage of no hope/no fear. He lived with an open heart and mind, and put up no artificial boundaries between himself and those he met. The crazed hippies he encountered in the early 70’s (including yours truly) posed no problems for him. Nor did the pompous politicians and businessmen.
He dove in, always curious about others. He did not judge or compare, since he was unfettered by his own, native culture.
Rinpoche’s only concern, in my experience, was to inspire, cajole and nudge people into genuine spiritual practice beyond ego’s subtle, clever games. He used many means to do this, including a devastating, irreverent and bizarro sense of humor. At time, he sat for hours in a chair and did absolutely nothing but rest in space. He wasn’t afraid of space, or boredom, or the present moment.
And yet, he published dozens of books, and built big institutions, like Naropa University.
He loved, he cried and he was 100% real.
This fall, I’m co-teaching a course on Trungpa Rinpoche in Boulder, Colorado:
Public Course on the Teachings of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche.
Starting on Tuesday, September 22nd, a twelve-class course will explore the life and teachings of the Tibetan Buddhist meditation master and scholar, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche.
Classes will include talks, stories, anecdotes, poems, videos, and open discussion. The public course is open to all, and will be take place at the Boulder Shambhala Center, Main Shrine Room, every Tuesday evening, from September 22 to December 15, 2009, 7:00 to 9:00 PM.
Note: No class on Tuesday, October 13. The class has a drop-in option: participants can take the entire course, or individual classes, as they wish.
A creative, evocative teacher, author and spiritual friend, Trungpa Rinpoche was a pioneer in bringing the wisdom and sanity of Tibetan Buddhism to the West. He is highly regarded for his skill in making the essential, profound Buddhist teachings accessible and practical for Westerners. With humor and a direct, engaging style, Rinpoche inspired and challenged many students in North America and Europe during his 25 years of teaching in the West.
The instructors for the course are Peter Volz and Clarke Warren. Pre-registration is not required. Meditation instruction will be offered every class. The cost is $15 per class, or $150 for the course. (Arrangements can be made for payment.)
For more information, contact Peter Volz at [email protected]. The course is sponsored by the Boulder Shambhala Center, and supported in part by a grant from the Chogyam Trungpa Legacy Project (chogyamtrungpa.com).