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The Sadhana of Mahamudra by Chgyam Trungpa

The Sadhana of Mahamudra by Chgyam Trungpa

Commentary by Reginald A. Ray

The text and context of the Sadhana and the translation of Tibetan Buddhism to the West

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The Sadhana of Mahamudra, written in Bhutan by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in 1967, is widely considered one of his most seminal works. Trungpa himself considered it "terma," meaning a most sacred revelation given by the eighth century saint Padmasambhava, rather than being composed by Trungpa personally.

Historically, the Sadhana’s composition occurred in the very midst of Trungpa’s transition from being an exponent of a thoroughly traditional Tibetan world into his career as one of the most important and innovative lamas bringing Tibetan Buddhism to the West. Study of the text reveals insights into Buddhism’s emergence from a staunchly conservative Tibetan religious environment into the utterly different Western world.

Within Trungpa’s corpus, the Sadhana is particularly important because its main themes prefigure the unique teaching style, method, and content of his delivery of Buddhism into a modern context. In the text, we can hear Trungpa expressing his own uncertainties as well as his inspirations about how to make the dharma thrive in the West.

This course was delivered over four sessions hosted by Naropa University in the fall of 2011.

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Product Code AS02779W