A spiritual breath of compassion, writer and teacher Vidyadhara ("wisdom holder") Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche (1939-1987) was born in a small plateau town of northeastern Tibet.
"If you must begin then go all the way, because if you begin and quit, the unfinished business you have left behind begins to haunt you all the time," he once said.
Trungpa was a descendant of King Gesar of Ling. At age 20, his country was invaded by the Chinese and he fled to India. He studied at Oxford University in England, founded Samye Ling in Scotland in 1967, then and moved to the United States in 1970. Throughout his life, he helped others to see basic goodness as a birthright.
"Learning, from a non-ego point of view, is based on opening our heart and discovering a natural sense of discipline," he taught.
A poet and calligrapher, he brought art and meaning to life, helping to spread the Buddhist teachings of Tibet in the Western world. He developed Shambhala Training, the sacred path of the warrior, which celebrated the deepening experience of meditation, the "continuity of wakefulness underlying all the changing conditions."
"Real fearlessness is the product of tenderness," he said. With emphasis on secular rather than a religious approach, his path of study and practice continues to be offered in meditation centers throughout the world.
Show compassion whenever you can.