Slow on the Uptake

August 11, 2008 by     Print This Post Print This Post

Denny Blouin pens a personal investigation on Chögyam Trungpa in North America. “He came West at a pivot moment in world history. A time when, as he said, ‘confusions dawn everywhere, spiritual disciplines have gotten messed up and because of that, somehow or other, somewhere, vajrayana is possible to present. In this land of America, this beautiful land, this beautiful kingdom of America, vajrayana Buddhism has become possible to present.'”

Read the article, and return here to comment.


5 Responses to “Slow on the Uptake”

  1. Gesar Mukpo on August 22nd, 2008 12:15 pm

    This web page is falling far short of what I hoped for it.
    I’m unamused.

  2. Aba Cecile McHardy on August 22nd, 2008 6:34 pm

    The Power of our Stories.

    Thank you dear Denault for ‘Slow on the Uptake. There is a folk proverb: ‘Faggots are not hard to catch’ whose meaning is the opposite of your title. Translated it means ‘charred ends of firewood are swift to ignite’. ha ha
    We should encourage more voices of that motley crew – Not all were dharma bums or buddha bastards new to the practice and disciplines of meditation. Some were nobodies, know bodhi.

    I am always curious about the admission of CTR’s early students – their ‘fear’ of him – so contrary to my own delight in his playfulness.

    A narrative framed in the heroic scope of Rick Fields’ ‘History of Buddhism in America: How the Swans came to the Lake’ where he acknowledges though buddhism is commonly thought of as an Eastern religion, east and west are little more than shifting designations on a round earth; this has given birth to a myth, much like the one that Christopher Colombus ‘discovered’ America when apparently he was ‘lost’ in the Caribbean which he mistook for the Orient.

    [Am sharing this aside with my tongue in your cheek].

    We have access to other wisdom traditions – a lineage of some relevance. The Harlem Renaissance of the 1920’s was a period of great spiritual awakening – as an example, G. I. Gurdjieff had profound impact: enigmatic, outrageous, inscrutible. Jean Toomer an African American Writer continued Gurdjieff’s ‘work’ called scattering. The methods were eclectic, not presented as a ‘religion’. You were given ‘tools’ and by applying them make your own discoveries. So in the ‘other’ America, I suggest was a ‘thread’ with no ‘name’ but clear recognition of CTR manifesting as a wisdom crazy guide capable of ‘ripening’ beings. Such auspicious encounters – How fortunate.

    Students of the Gurdjieff ‘work’ and also of Arica [the Bolivian guide Oscar Ichazo] who were trained by ‘students’ never having met the ‘great men’ were included among the Vidyadhara’s early students. You know who you are. Come out of the woodwork:-) Whats your namthar?

  3. kathleen kimble on May 2nd, 2011 1:01 pm

    I am trying to reach Denault Blouin regarding our old friend, poet Ed Lahey. Please contact me at the email I provided. –kathleen kimble in Missoula Montana, May 2, 2011

  4. maria heng on September 27th, 2011 11:40 pm

    Dear Denault Blouin,

    You’ve given me a gift with your words, a gift that went straight to my heart. I had to pause half way through for the welling up of connecting emotion that was part grief at the lost opportunity of meeting Trungpa, part bleeding raw vibrancy awoken by the trigger of your evocation – loss and joy crashing into each other. I returned to finish reading this piece of yours, in appreciation for your honesty, sensitivity, and the skill you employed in conveying the story so well you got out of the way altogether. Thank you very much. I would love to read more of Trungpa through your words. Deep appreciation to you.

  5. denault blouin on June 3rd, 2014 3:27 pm

    I’d sure like to know Kathleen Kimble’s email address, because Ed Lahey and all of us from that 60’s generation respected his voice and presence.

    — db