What would Padmasambhava do?

November 17, 2008

What would Padmasambhava do?

In the cave of Taktsang Senge Samdrup
He who has buried treasure in rocks and snow mountains in holy places of Tibet
Shows kindness to the people of the future dark age
I supplicate you Dorje Trollö
I supplicate you Urgyen Padmakara.[1]

I humbly present these thoughts.  My humbleness comes from a paucity of intellect and memory, and any real knowledge of Tibetan history.  However,  I do think that what little I do think I know is helpful enough to get feedback from others and to create at least some sort of hope. 

I get the impression that due to the great devotion and  exertion of our Kagyu forefathers, the full transmission of the experiential teachings based on esoteric instructions from the tantras they received from their teachers in India has been preserved up until this time.  Furthermore,  great compendiums of written instructions and commentaries have been collected, contemplated  and preserved  with great insight and exertion by such masters as Rangjung Dorje and Jamgon Kongtrul Lodro Thaye, among others, I’m sure.  There have also been great teachers who were ostracized, punished,  and their works destroyed.  (Such as Dolpolpa, who radically influenced the Shentong tradition, and whose work, apparently,  managed to survive to this day.) 

Somehow,  we  were fortunate enough to receive the pith (and more) of these incredible treasures, baked fresh yet again by a miraculous teacher  appearing in our life time.

Now,  it seems to me,  that one of the  biggest issues  we are facing is  losing these incredible treasures with all their subtleties, and depth.   Basically,  I’m sure that  many would agree that although Trungpa  Rinpoche is  so called “dead,”   he is also alive in the transmission we received from him,  the practices he gave us, and in his written and spoken words.  They must not die with us!!!!

We need to save his legacy. So far, this sort of work is already going on in various ways, most importantly in the Chogyam Trungpa Legacy Project. I wonder if “we concerned” could perhaps work more closely with that group, nobly led by Carolyn Gimian and others,  to find out more about what are the real dangers of copyright losses and also to find ways to protect whatever can be protected,  and to promote whatever can be promoted.  Also, ways to make these teachings more accessible to people now and in the future.  Fabrice Midal is another brilliant resource for this.   Likewise, perhaps in an advisory sense, Reggie Ray and the Ojai group.

Again, I am grateful for this site, to be able to freely discuss these things, and hopefully as a way to work through our rants, misunderstandings and  despair over this serious matter, and to  brainstorm possible avenues of hope.   

– Ginny Lipson

[1] from The Sadhana of Mahamudra, by Chögyam Trungpa