The Decision to Become a Buddhist

refuge, buddhism, chogyam trungpa, lion's roar

Taking refuge in the Buddha, the dharma and the sangha is something more than a ritual, wrote Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. By taking refuge, we are committing ourselves to freedom. "I take refuge in the Buddha.I take refuge in the dharma.I take refuge in the sangha." In the Buddhist tradition, the purpose of taking refuge is to awaken from confusion and associate oneself with [...]

Healing and the Reality of Death

Feet at the end of a hospital bed,

We view our desire to get rid of disease as a desire to live. But it is often just the opposite: it is an attempt to avoid life. Illness is not so special—nor so terrible. It is a question of acknowledging that we are born alone and that we die alone, but that it is still okay.   In discussing sickness, whether physical or mental, we should recognize the importance [...]

The Warrior Tradition: Conquering Fear

Bodhisattva Fear Chogyam Trungpa Buddhism Lion's Roar

This article is based on a seminar Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche conducted in 1979 for teachers in Shambhala Training on meditation and the view of warriorship. That seminar was about fearlessness, and as well, about how to recognize and conquer real enemies in the world outside. (The material presented is now the core of Trungpa Rinpoche's book, Smile at Fear.) Chögyam Trungpa had [...]

Why We Meditate

Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Meditation, Shambhala Sun, Vajrayana, Buddhism, Lion's Roar

We don’t meditate to become better people or have special experiences, says Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Meditation is simply the way we relate to our already existing enlightened state. The actual experience, techniques, and disciplines of meditation are still unfamiliar to many people. So I would like to give you a basic idea of how meditation practice works, how it operates [...]

Living the Lion’s Roar: How to Practice Fearlessness

Lion's Roar, Chogyam Trungpa, Desmond Lobo, Buddhism, Lions, Fearlessness

At every stage of our path, says Chögyam Trunpga Rinpoche, the fearless proclamation of the truth cuts through ego. Are we ready to hear it? We could regard enlightenment as the product of the fearfulness of ego, which constantly tries to maintain itself and to run away from any threats that might reveal its nonexistence. The samsaric kleshas, or conflicting emotions—passion, [...]

Find Your Heart in Loneliness

Man standing in front of a mountain.

In this talk from his teachings on the Tibetan yogi Milarepa, Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche describes the experience of desolateness. Like Milarepa when he meditated in his cave, when we are alone, we may begin a love affair with sadness. The first meeting with oneself, with aloneness, is meeting one’s real ego without clothing—naked ego, assertive, distinct, clear, definite ego. [...]

The Basic Principle of Bodhicitta

Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche Bodhichitta Mahayana Vajrayana / Tibetan Buddhism Shambhala Sun

Relative bodhicitta is how we learn to love each other and ourselves, according to Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. The basic principle of ultimate bodhicitta is to rest in the fundamental state of consciousness, before it is divided into ‘I and ‘other.' Generosity is self-existing openness, complete openness. The ultimate principle of the awakened heart is based on developing [...]

Trust in Your Goodness


Instead of trying to promote or defend ourselves, says Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, we can base our lives on something more powerful and trustworthy—our basic goodness. Paintings by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Lettering by Hannah Reynolds. Meditation practice is not an exotic or out-of-reach approach. It is immediate and personal, and it involves an intimate relationship with [...]

The New Age


In an article originally published in 1969, Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche reflects on how Buddhism can address the alienation of modern society. Every age is an age of change. This means also change in the social structure of the life of the people. There is never a still or static moment of time. As the time situations develop—there comes new ways of expressing wisdom — new ways [...]

Zen Mind, Vajra Mind

Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche Suzuki-Roshi tantra Vajrayana / Tibetan Buddhism Zen

The late Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche described Suzuki Roshi as his “accidental father” in America, and through their close friendship he gained great respect for the Zen tradition. In this talk, Chögyam Trungpa looks at the basic differences between Zen and tantra. If we begin to discuss the two approaches of Zen and tantra, we will be lost. If we take a glimpse at their [...]