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 Crazy Wisdom - Documentary film about Trungpa

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Jcbaran

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PostSubject: Crazy Wisdom - Documentary film about Trungpa   Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:55 pm

This is a review from the New York Times. As the reviewer rightly points out, the film lacks any critical thinking or point of view. What we need in Buddhism now is much more sane critical thinking and speaking out and less blind devotion. Demonizing the "rational mind" in not what the Buddha taught.

The influential Tibetan Buddhist Chogyam Trungpa is the subject of Johanna Demetrakas's documentary “Crazy Wisdom.”
Spreading Inner Peace, but Living With Turmoil


By RACHEL SALTZ
Published: November 24, 2011 - New York Times

“Crazy Wisdom,” Johanna Demetrakas’s documentary about Chogyam Trungpa, a Tibetan who was instrumental in bringing Buddhism to the West, clearly loves its subject well. Too well. Ms. Demetrakas’s film bathes in Trungpa’s glow and spends much time with his followers, who talk about his teachings and his impact on their lives. (He died in 1987, at 48.) But the movie goes mushy when it should be critical, and leaves you with questions that it’s not prepared to answer.

Trungpa escaped from Tibet in 1959 after the Chinese invasion. He studied at Oxford and opened a Tibetan center in Scotland, where he gave up his monastic vows, married a 15-year-old British girl and was partially paralyzed in a car accident. (He was probably driving drunk.) In 1970 he moved to the United States, eventually founding the Naropa Institute (now Naropa University) in Boulder, Colo.

Trungpa was loved as a great teacher, and many interviewed talk about his uncanny ability to communicate. It’s easy to see how this former monk, who smoked, drank (a lot, it seems) and slept with his female followers, appealed to restless Americans of that time — hippies and others searching for spiritual substance and non-Western answers. (Allen Ginsberg was a fan.)

Trungpa’s vices are what many followers see as his “crazy wisdom,” though some seem perplexed by the excesses in a man they consider enlightened. But the film doesn’t dwell on it too much. It would have helped to hear from people critical of Trungpa and from traditional Tibetan Buddhists, who might put his teachings, his crazy wisdom and his followers in perspective.

CRAZY WISDOM

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mstrathern
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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Wisdom - Documentary film about Trungpa   Fri Nov 25, 2011 10:06 pm

Yes Josh, its sounds like an uncritical hagiography of a man who at his best ("Spritual Materialism"?) had great insight and expresive power but, from what I have heard and read, at his worst made the excesses of Shasta pale into insignificance.

Now it seems he is held up as an exemplar to us all and his worst laughed of as 'crazy wisdom' - a sad day.
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Howard

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Wisdom - Documentary film about Trungpa   Sat Nov 26, 2011 4:09 am

An inconsistent love of truth is the all too common arrhythmical heart of a devotional practise.

Not sure if I need to spend money to see the movie version of this.
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Jcbaran

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Wisdom - Documentary film about Trungpa   Sat Nov 26, 2011 10:54 am

someone sent me a DVD, which frankly, i have yet to watch.
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