Remembering Chögyam Trungpa

Allen Ginsberg and Chögyam  Trungpa, Rinpoche. Benefit for Kama Dzong Meditation Center, May 6, 1972. Macky Auditorium, Boulder, CO. Photo:  Bob Morehouse

Allen’s great teacher, Chögyam Trungpa (1939-1987) would have turned 75 today.

To quote (succinctly) from his Wikipedia entry:

“Recognized both by Tibetan Buddhists and by other spiritual practitioners and scholars as a preeminent teacher of Tibetan Buddhism, he was a major figure in the dissemination of Buddhism in the West, founding Vajradhatu and Naropa University and establishing the Shambhala Training method.
Among his contributions are the translation of numerous Tibetan Buddhist texts, the introduction of the Vajrayana teachings to the West, and a presentation of the Buddhadharma largely devoid of ethnic trappings.”

Wikipedia (naturally) doesn’t elide over some of the more controversial aspects of Rinpoche’s teaching methods and character, but it is with his formidable achievements as a tülku (an essential figure in both the Kagyu and Nyingma lineages) that we honor him and celebrate him today.

For a more detailed and comprehensive account of his life and times, we direct you to his Shambhala Publications page – here   and to the biographical note here at The Chögyam Trungpa Institute, at Naropa University  (the Institute also hosts the invaluable Chögyam Trungpa Digital Library). Also essential is The Chronicles of Trungpa Rinpoche – see here

Plenty of Trungpa Rinpoche on The Allen Ginsberg Project. Check out these early postings – from 2012 and from 2011, the year before.
In 2022, a guest-posting by our friend Marc Olmsted, provided a measured assessment.
There was also the wonderful guest-posting from his son,  Gesar Mukpo – (a cartoon celebration, no less!) – which we featured last year

We’ll conclude with Johanna Demetrakas’  2011 documentary,  Crazy Wisdom – The Life and Times of Chögyam Trungpa, which can be viewed in its entirety – here:

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