As I was reading a biography of Trungpa Rinpoche written by his wife, I recalled something that happened some twenty years ago in Calais. A tibetan association had invited a prestigious guest, nobody but a relative of the Dalai lama s family, a very educated Tibetan woman spreaking perfect American English and giving a talk about Tibet and the Chinese invasion. I was in charge of translating. At the end we ended up with a few friends of the tibetan cause at a local restaurant when the Karmapa controversy came in the conversation, this big leader had two incarnations, both claiming the throne of the Karmapa and the right to rule over many centers in the world. The Tibetan lady was very adamant, they could only be one true Karmapa, it had to be the Dalai Lama's choice and the other one could only be a political puppet, a fake, an insult to the true dharma. At that point I just said this: "just like the beautiful bright silver round moon in the sky reflected in countless ponds and bowls filled with water, a principle such as Karmapa could be displayed in many places, many moons can manifest, all of them being the expression of the one. The one is living in the many, the many returns to the one".Poor girl, she was so pissed and very suddely turned very agressive, and she behaved like a true arrogant Tibetan aristocrat telling me I did not understand Tibetan Buddhism, Buddhism itself and the sacred teachings of Lord Buddha. I kept my mouth shut at that point, smiled at her and finished my delicious icecream not really willing to create a diplomatic stir in the North of France.
I was very happy to read the words of Khyentse Rinpoche about Trungpa's rebirth in The book about Trungpa:" you should not worry, Rinpoche might have many rebirths. it is like when you look at hte moon reflected in a bowl of water. If you look in one than one bowl a ta time, you might see many many reflections. But they are all reflecting the same thing".
I don t know about the future or past lives. I don t care much about it. All I know is that I can see in my students or people or moments aspects of Kannon, faces of Monju, I can meet manifestations of Boddhisatvas.
Once you truly understand how insane the idea of a self is, how real is impermanence, as soon as you drop the belief system you have been given, the world opens up freely to incredible possibilities, the non dual blooms everywhere.
This Tibetan aristocrat thought she knew. Hopefully, her eyes opened to this. This is my wish.
For you, too.