[Reading] ➿ Meditation in Action Author Chögyam Trungpa – Cheapnikeshoes.co

I dunnoi m going through my shelves of Eastern Spirituality and trying to sort the wheat from the chaff, and am not really sure what to do with Trungpa This time out, I m leaning chaff , I m afraid One wants to get beyond concepts , but the Tibetan tradition for me, at least overcomplicates with its own conceptual grid He s a smart guy, just not a great fit for me at present And too heavy on the guru principle. One of the better books by Ch gyam Trungpa I liked Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism better, but this is good too and may be worth a read as well This Classic Teaching By A Tibetan Master Continues To Inspire Both Beginners And Long Time Practitioners Of Buddhist Meditation Ch Gyam Trungpa Rinpoche Shows That Meditation Extends Beyond The Formal Practice Of Sitting To Build The Foundation For Compassion, Awareness, And Creativity In All Aspects Of Life He Explores The Six Activities Associated With Meditation In Action Generosity, Discipline, Patience, Energy, Clarity, And Wisdom Revealing That Through Simple, Direct Experience, One Can Attain Real Wisdom The Ability To See Clearly Into Situations And Deal With Them Skillfully, Without The Self Consciousness Connected With Ego First published in 1969 this Buddhist gem has not gone out of print for over 40 years Clearly the author was making an strong effort to present these concepts to the Western mind and he succeeded brilliantly For anyone interested in Buddhism this is a must read. This book struck me as scattered and, while somewhat insightful, it introduces a lot of concepts without having a clear idea of how much the reader ought to know about Buddhism or meditation or what level the reader is at For example, it rapidly switches from advice for new meditators about learning from scriptures to advice about how to teach wisdom to others.I understood why this disorder happened when I listened to the afterward It turns out that the book was transcribed from a series of lectures Chogyam Trungpa gave at his temple in the UK in the 60 s This book was one of the first books to introduce Buddhism to a Western audience and became a massive hit once it hit a Berkeley bookstore and spread around the Bay Area Trungpa ended up moving to Vermont to start a Buddhist center there.Today, there are much better organized and better written books about Buddhism This book was interesting as a historical document in American Buddhism, and I learned some things, but I prefer recent books.Disclaimer About halfway through the book I looked up the author who turns out to be a lifelong alcoholic who died from alcohol related causes and regularly slept with his students This seems very un Buddhist to me the opposite of removing attachment This colored my view of the contents, although I didn t find the author s personal life reflected much in the book. The parts about the Manure of Experience and the Ego Bubble were worth reading the entire book Wicked short The version I read was 74 pages. Loved it, but then I read this book seeking the precise formula of answers described by the author, so I am biased to say the least Though it s organized in chapters, it reads like a train of thought monologue seeking to address particular subjects This is a short book, but it took me a couple of weeks to get through it because it was so densely packed with insight that I had to stop and contemplate I anticipated a guide or commentary on sitting meditation but the author s aim, which he achieved successfully, was application of meditation as a way of living Simple enough in concept being in the present moment and all that But it requires a significant amount of rewiring and that is the true work I think a reader would experience this book and either toss it away for life or study it in depth over a longer period of time thereafter I m definitely in Group B You read a widely regarded author or spiritual leader and almost hope to not be blown away like everyone else In keeping with the themes and theories of this text, I m just going to be okay with being blown away, regardless of what others would think or say, and appreciate the experience I love a book that doesn t shatter my world, but manages to shift it, because so much truth is simply stated. In the highly sensitive and spiritually inclined cultures of India there are a number of forms of Yoga union with the beloved One is Bhakti or devotional yoga, another is Karma yoga or the practice of selfless work in service also called Seva The ultimate yoga is called Raja yoga or the yoga of kings whereupon, the student is given extensive practices to perform, dietary regulations to adhere to, prayers and words to memorize, and a whole catalog of proscriptions, prescriptions, and inscriptions to guide the seeker through a life time of practice These will lead to their liberation if all goes well There are a number of reasons this system is called Raja or Kingly yoga and one of them is practical It requires the wealth of a king to have the time required to practice these complex and demanding disciplines In American terms, Raja Yoga is best suited for the independently wealthy or those who can look forward to years of free time This book reminds me of such a system, a philosophy of Kings For those who are inclined to complicate the obvious or look to exotic far away lands in order to find what already exists in their innermost hearts this book is must read. I love the everyday application that this book offers I especially appreciate the exercises offered that keep one humble and open to inspiration from whatever deity you receive revelation from in your life I recommend this one highly if you are interested in getting started in mediation or if you already meditate and you need to move that skill into giving you a sense of stillness in your everyday activities. I first learned about this book in the Shunryu Suzuki biography Crooked Cucumber Trungpa was a friend of Suzuki, and Suzuki spoke highly of Trungpa History has shown to be Trungpa to be not a good man He would often have sexual relationships with his students, once even using his guards to strip students naked see Wikipedia To me that doesn t sound particularly enlightened, like someone abusing their position.Here we have a few collected speeches of Trungpa, and they re actually good , if a bit too short I can see why his style of meditation immediately became popular in the West, it s meditation without a need for religion or spirituality In fact, it is the essence of meditation Whatever one does, whatever one tries to practice, is not aimed at achieving a higher state or at following some theory or ideal, but simply, without any object or ambition, trying to see what is here and now There is an amazing discussion of how the ego is in your way, and by giving away things even only symbolically, like a single cheap thing you are emotionally attached to is one way of getting away from your ego similar like having a teacher won t help you learn new things in meditation, at least but they re a way to protect you from your ego, as their teaching will come from the outside So one must also be very grateful to the teacher And that is a great protection against the ego, since you do not look on it as something discovered within yourself, but as something which someone else has given you He gives you this gift although in reality the transmission is not, as we said, something given to you, it is simply discovered within oneself.Funny enough, opposing the title there is not much advice on how to meditate best , Trungpa leaves that to the personal teachers.Some other good advice For unless one is able to overcome this excitement, one will not be able to learn, because any form of emotional excitement has a blinding effect One fails to see life as it is because one tends so much to build up one s own version of it Therefore one should never commit oneself or conform to any religious or political structure without first finding the real essence of what one is looking for Labeling oneself, adopting an ascetic way of life or changing one s costume none of these brings about any real transformation.Curiously, there s a lot of good stuff here, even if you re not looking to learn about Buddhism or meditation.