In 2001 Trungpa’s son and his stepmom visited the nephew of Surmang Monastery’s abbot  


A picture of a pre-Shambhala Buddhism Chogyam Trungpa transmitting his lineage to us back in the day

Jonathan said, “Didn’t Lady Diana and the Sakyong go to Tibet; give the Shambhala transmission to Trungpa Yangsi?”

“In 2001,” Japhy responds.

“To begin with, what happened In 2001 when Trungpa’s son and his stepmother visited the nephew of Surmang’ Monastery’s Abbot, as I see it, if I may.”

Japhy continues.

“Let’s stipulate that the Shambhala lineage was by magic transmitted from the Sakyong to Trungpa Yangsi.”

“Here’s the thing, Chogyam Trungpa fled Tibet with this hocus pocus.”

“What was transmitted was something other than Chogyam Trungpa’s lineage as such.”

Japhy pauses.

“In 2001 Trungpa’s son, 38 years old at the time, founded Shambhala Buddhism.”

“He became a thing, hitherto unknown to us.”

“More or less.”

Japhy pauses.

“It’s not like Trungpa hid the fact that as a 22 year old monk he knocked up a nun while living with Freda Bedi in India.” 

“The young couple hooked up while fleeing China’s occupation of Tibet.”

“Not to judge.”

Japhy pauses.

“I only go there to provide a historical context for his relationship with his father.”

Japhy continues.

“The Sakyong was 26 when his dad passed.”

“He grew up in India.”

“Presumably, homeschooled in one of Penor Rinpoche’s there.”

“Needless to say, he didn’t have the life of his half brothers.”

Japhy pauses.

“This is who the Sakyong is in relationship to his father’s lineage as such.”

Japhy continues.

“Finally, in 1994 Penor Rinpoche enthroned him at Namdroling monastary as the reincarnation of Mipham.”

“Apparently, in the Sakyong we have a great scholar, according to Rinpoche.”


Japhy concludes.

“None of this makes for a transmission of Trungpa’s lineage as far as I’m personally concerned.”

One last Japhy pause and he’s done with his thoughts on the subject, thankfully.

“As such, Jonathan, that dog won’t hunt.”



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3 responses to “In 2001 Trungpa’s son and his stepmom visited the nephew of Surmang Monastery’s abbot  

  1. “Don’t worry…

    You’re all tulkus … incarnations of beings who have taken the bodhisattva vow to raise all sentient beings to the level of complete enlightenment…

    Just because you don’t have an important title attached to your name doesn’t mean that you haven’t appeared in this life to fulfill your bodhisattva vow….

    Historically, the term “Rinpoche” referred to a person who is born with a “wealth” or “precious inheritance” of knowledge, whereas nowadays, it often refers to a person born into a wealthy family….

    Be grateful that you don’t have a title…and rest assured that you entered this life and have the opportunity to continue in the stream of Buddhist teachings as a result of the vows and practices you engaged in during previous lives.”

    I have seen these words ascribed to Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche … though I, personally, have not been able to confirm the quote. One site referenced Crazy Wisdom, but I was not able to find it in a quick search.

    Much like the idea of reincarnation, though the above quote may be a dubious statement, I do find it helpful to contemplate. We all have a responsibility to test things for ourselves and not to blindly follow along. Its a measuring stick for me – some are aghast when I say I don’t find much to reincarnation and others have been very encouraging. You gotta take each as they come … are the teachings offered beneficial is my concern.

    That said the 12th Trungpa is who he is … there is much about him, so I can’t really so much other than that.

  2. okiebuddhist

    The Sakyong didn’t go to Tibet to receive transmissions. He went there to collect Trungpa’s termas and writings both written down before Trungpa fleed Tibet. These writings will or have been translated by Nalanda translations committee.

    As for what the Sakyong has received from his father or from Dilgo, I know not.

    As for the appointed rebirth of Trungpa, the transmission of the Karma Kagyu lineage is enough to practice for multiple lifetimes. It is still relevant and powerful.

    • Osel Karl

      Yes, Shambala mined the ore of Trungpa’s termas, some of which he revealed as young as age 12. The Sakyong collected them and brought them back to be absorbed into the Shambalian curricula. It’s actually a great manipulation on their part.

      Meanwhile, a literal treasure trove of translated Kagyu sadhanas lay unused as the Sakyong has decided to move away from Kagyu practice.

      I think we are missing Bill’s narrative re: the Sakyong as it pertains to reincarnation. While the Sakyong may or may not be the reincarnation of Mipham, it is very convenient that he is, and it is no less ironic that he was recognized by Penor Rinpoche who had the dubious distinction of recognizing a number of questionable tulkus, some are obvious, a less obvious one is the wife of one of Taiwan’s Finance Ministers. She was recognized as Yeshe Tsogyal herself.

      Last I heard, the previous Mipham Rinpoche said that he never wanted to be found. Of course his line is so illustrious that there are now several Mipham Tulkus which highlights the use of the tulku system to legitimize or bring extra honors to any given institution.

      In this post-modern era, if we are unable to use the analysis of power dynamics towards our religious tradition and just follow blindly what the higher-ups are saying (especially when it doesn’t make sense) then we might as well return to medieval era.

      The obsession with reincarnation is a subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) obsession with the past and preoccupation with the future. If Mahamudra is our practice, this is an inappropriate way to frame appearance.

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