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Training the Mind and Cultivating Loving-Kindness

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Warning: Using this book could be hazardous to your ego! The slogans it contains are designed to awaken the heart and cultivate love and kindness toward others. They are revolutionary in that practicing them fosters abandonment of personal territory in relating to others and in understanding the world as it is.

The fifty-nine provocative slogans presented here—each with a commentary by the Tibetan meditation master Chögyam Trungpa—have been used by Tibetan Buddhists for eight centuries to help meditation students remember and focus on important principles and practices of mind training. They emphasize meeting the ordinary situations of life with intelligence and compassion under all circumstances. Slogans include, "Don't be swayed by external circumstances," "Be grateful to everyone," and "Always maintain only a joyful mind."

This edition contains a new foreword by Pema Chödrön.

250 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 1993

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About the author

Chögyam Trungpa

183 books721 followers
Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche (Tibetan: ཆོས་ རྒྱམ་ དྲུང་པ་ Wylie: Chos rgyam Drung pa; also known as Dorje Dradul of Mukpo, Surmang Trungpa, after his monastery, or Chökyi Gyatso, of which Chögyam is an abbreviation) was a Buddhist meditation master, scholar, teacher, poet, and artist. He was the 11th descendent in the line of Trungpa tulkus of the Kagyü school of Tibetan Buddhism. He was also trained in the Nyingma tradition, the oldest of the four schools, and was an adherent of the rimay or "non-sectarian" movement within Tibetan Buddhism, which aspired to bring together and make available all the valuable teachings of the different schools, free of sectarian rivalry.

Trungpa was a significant figure in the dissemination of Tibetan Buddhism to the West, founding Naropa University and establishing the Shambhala Training method, a presentation of the Buddhadharma largely devoid of ethnic trappings. In 1963, he moved to England to study comparative religion, philosophy, and fine arts at Oxford University. During this time, he also studied Japanese flower arranging and received an instructors degree from the Sogetsu school of ikebana. In 1967, he moved to Scotland, where he founded the Samye Ling meditation centre.

Shortly thereafter, a variety of experiences—including a car accident that left him partially paralyzed on the left side of his body—led him to give up his monastic vows and work as a lay teacher. In 1969, he published Meditation in Action , the first of fourteen books on the spiritual path published during his lifetime. The following year he married Diana Pybus and moved to the United States, where he established his first North American meditation centre, Tail of the Tiger (now known as Karmê-Chöling) in Barnet, Vermont.

In 1986, he moved to Nova Scotia, Canada, where hundreds of his students had settled. That Autumn, after years of heavy alcohol use, he had a cardiac arrest, and he died of heart failure the following Spring. His legacy is carried on by his son, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, under the banner of Shambhala International and the Nalanda Translation Committee.

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5 stars
1,607 (47%)
4 stars
1,001 (29%)
3 stars
476 (14%)
2 stars
181 (5%)
1 star
134 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 84 reviews
January 3, 2009
THis was part of the curriculum for a class on Lojong - which simply means "mind training" in Tibetan - a way of using something like proverbs to train the mind in Buddhist precepts. They are wonderfully sharp, witty gems that have come down through centuries and translation. I found them and this book very lucid and helpful. It will take many readings and much contemplation and practice to really "get it," but that's the whole point - these are connected to a practice.
Profile Image for Vanessa.
225 reviews48 followers
September 20, 2016
this book grabbed me. it is based on lojong training in Mahayana, accompanied by commentary written by Chogyam Trungpa. feels timely for all the shit going in the world, to stay in the seat of transpersonal power and not get pulled into reactive mind. true compassion in practice. very helpful.
Profile Image for Ellery Hamann.
42 reviews8 followers
August 19, 2014
Chogyam Trungpa's interpretation of the slogans is direct and to the point. It goes well with reading two or three other interpretations along with it. I wouldn't recommend it if it's the only book on the lojong slogans you're going to have. If I had to choose one it be Traleg Kyabgon's because of how thorough it is. For example, on some slogans Trungpa writes three sentences while Kyabgon will write 3 pages. Still, I'm giving it 5 stars because of how excellently written many parts are and because there is something to be said for just being clear and to the point.
Profile Image for Elizabeth Lozano.
169 reviews1 follower
June 6, 2017
I have read this book 4 times. It is worth reading a chapter occasionally, even randomly. Quite inspired.
Profile Image for Spyros.
18 reviews4 followers
January 1, 2014
This comes from the guy who couldn't train his mind enough to find his local AA meeting, even after becoming a cripple at the age of 23 or so from a dui, which, to his credit, did not stop him from having a family and a sizeable shanga.

Trungpa was a very colourful character, certainly gifted, certainly a charmer, most certainly a drunkard, and he had an equally colourful sangha where me managed to appoint an hiv positive alleged rapist as an heir, the inimitable Ösel Tendzin, the Vajra Regent, irony in full force of course.

I don't know what value this book, or for that matter the others in his oeuvre have, especially at this day and age where there are so many lucid buddhist teachers. He has a way to turn a phrase, I 'll give him that, and to do it in a way that does not insult your intelligence, well, most of the time anyway.
Profile Image for StudioWellspring~Anjie.
22 reviews1 follower
March 7, 2008
i'm taking an essential shmbhalal buddhism class right now and this is one of the required readings. it is good to be sure, but very intense and full of details that only a well-read shambhala or buddhist practitioner would fully grasp. so i wouldn't recommend reading it without a book club or class or teacher to discuss it with.
Profile Image for Meg.
33 reviews5 followers
January 31, 2011
I love the first two sentences on the back of the book: "WARNING! Using this book could be hazardous to your ego!" This book contains 59 slogans that are meant to help meditation students in mind training. Trungpa, to me, is always provocative to read. He cuts through the fluff and gets down to the simple truths.
Profile Image for Suzanne Arcand.
306 reviews22 followers
April 14, 2019
I spend a year doing this practice, one slogan each week and it was most profitable. Excellent no-nonsense book on the slogans but I would recommend that one studies them with a teacher. The book by itself would not give you the depth and the breath of this practice. Specially for the slogans concerning the Ultimate Bodhichitta.
Profile Image for Cherie.
3,409 reviews28 followers
August 25, 2007
B+ This book is an example of what a genius Trungpa was. He truly gets how to explain things to people. He uses slogans and everyday examples to try get people to think and act more mindfully and fully embody loving-kindness.
17 reviews2 followers
June 30, 2010
Very though provoking. Some of the teachings especially on tonglen and breathing meditation: breathing out good, loving kindness and breathing in bad.. How to? difficult to accept or reach that level of compassion.
Profile Image for Auronee Islam.
22 reviews2 followers
June 4, 2012
The book reads well. It's always good to be reminded and re-connect with the teachings and practices. A handy guide.
Profile Image for Laura.
40 reviews6 followers
December 6, 2012
I love the Cultivating Loving Kindness practice.
Profile Image for Stu Webbb.
42 reviews1 follower
October 24, 2013
As a Buddhist, I worked with these slogans for about a year. I can't say they stuck with me. They didn't reach my heart.
Profile Image for Jessica Blair.
37 reviews
March 6, 2015
Trungpa is almost never a disapointment, a little long in the eplanations but a big help none the less it deserves 4 stars.
Profile Image for Markus Stobbs.
22 reviews3 followers
July 29, 2020
Trungpa’s take on the Lojong mind slogans delivers all the delicious crazy wisdom he is known for and provides a bridge between Jamgon Kongtrul’s commentary and the ones to follow.
Profile Image for AttackGirl.
813 reviews14 followers
January 5, 2022
Now to practice everyday all day with love. No insurance claims, moody people, hunger, death, understanding of the cycle of life is love so death is it also love to ensure release from the body then why have children…
Profile Image for Jekaterina Dmitrijeva.
216 reviews9 followers
February 21, 2017
Lai arī autors apgalvo, ka grāmata ir iesācējiem-budisma praktiķiem, jāatzīst, ka tā bija diezgan sarežģīta klausīšanās. Saturs prasa lielu koncentrāciju, apdomāšanos un analīzi pēc noklausītā, vietām papildus izpēti. Kā galveno plusu var minēt autora mēģinājumus izvairīties, cik iespējams, no specifiskiem terminiem, humora izjūtu, kā arī lielu iedvesmu, ko klausīšanās ir devusi manos mēģinājumos sakārtot prātu.
Profile Image for Keith Willcock.
Author 6 books1 follower
April 24, 2012
I have the 1993 version of this book but it is the same length so I assume the content is pretty much the same. I call this my little book of reminders. Originally written down in the 1100's as the Root Text of Training the Mind these 58 slogans's offer practical instruction on how to live life from the Manahayana Buddhist point of view in stead of from a selfish materialistic perspective. Chogyam was known as a "crazy wisdom" teacher and for anyone who was privileged to know him he had a tremendous gift to get under one's skin and touch the points of the ego that were most sensitive. His commentary here has the same insightful, confrontative, and yet playful approach to life. There is never any guilt or judgement for what we aren't doing, simply a constantly shining sun that offers compassion and sustenance while we sort things out.There are no word games, no sophisticated phrases, just straight practical guidance. Chogyam constantly reminds us of our dignity while inviting us to laugh at ourselves along the way.

But don't expect to get comfortable with these teachings because the moment we get a little self satisfied with our newly acquired knowledge Chogyam with a smile and deft slight of hand pulls our meditation cushion from under us. In keeping with his nature we find not 58 slogans as advertised but a 59th which reminds us not to "expect others to praise you or raise toasts to you. Don't count on receiving credit for your good deeds or good practice." To which one is tempted to add the Nike slogan, "Just do it." Live joyously and without expectations.
Profile Image for Kevin.
291 reviews11 followers
June 16, 2016
I made the mistake of getting this in audiobook form. The poor review is more related to the horrible narration than the book itself. The book itself is probably worthy of a three-star rating, while the audiobook narration made me want to make it a one-star... so I'm going for the middle path and giving it a two-star...

The content is just as the description suggest... it's a collection of slogans and phrases. They are meant to inspire, explain, and enlighten (or something like that). If that's all it was, it actually probably would've been a lot better. Instead, there is a lot of explanation (and repetition), which would likely lull even the most mindful of monks into a dazed stupor.
Profile Image for Benjie Deford.
19 reviews2 followers
June 26, 2013
This book has helped guide my life like no other, based on a series Of slogans to help lay practitioners hundreds of years ago meditate and do meditational practice within lay Tibetan life. Yet it is more than important still today since it shows us how to live with Buddhism instead of how to be a Buddhist by leaving the world. When I asked my one time college mentor my anthropology teacher who had been a Buddhist monk in Thailand for five years for the best book to read about Theravada or Buddhism in general this is what he gave me. Thank you Alan K.
Profile Image for Stephanie.
261 reviews9 followers
February 10, 2015
Trungpa is rad. It nice to read a book about Metta that mentions punk rock too. He understands the humans pretty well.

His thoughts on forgiveness are interesting. Don't forgive if it means you are surrendering yourself. Don't forgive quickly or thoughtlessly, that justifies the trespass. You may feel better but it might not be real.
Profile Image for Carolyn.
188 reviews3 followers
January 11, 2012
Sometimes I lose track of what he is trying to say - these being transcribed from dharma talks - but sometimes his examples and explanations are right on. His wisdom just cuts through. Makes me want to re-read Pema Chodron's book on the same topic though - for clarity.
Profile Image for Geri Degruy.
276 reviews2 followers
April 3, 2014
Excellent book about calming and training the mind which relates to every moment of every day we live and every relationship we have. It's hard stuff. Chogyam Trungpa doesn't pull any punches although he also has a good sense of humor. I've read this many times and will read it many more.
Profile Image for Brian Sollors.
19 reviews
April 18, 2015
Very good book...Small, but super deep. A lot of it went over my head. What I did get out of it was the need to lose our ego's, be more compassionate and meditate as much as possible. We need to show love and kindness toward others
Profile Image for Maggie.
1,628 reviews38 followers
December 10, 2015
the best of the three of chogyam trungpa audio renditions of his lecture series yet! his words capture the direct issue in understandable terms and examples. i didn't agree with all of his examples but his main points are flawless.
Profile Image for Patrick Taylor.
104 reviews
April 23, 2016
I find the lojong principles and slogans incredibly helpful guides in how to deal with the world, but I didn't love this book. Pema Chodron and Norman Fischer have written books on Lojong that are more accessible to Westerners, and I'd recommend those over this one.
Profile Image for Rhonda Lstraw.
17 reviews7 followers
July 10, 2016
I loved this book though the writing was choppy. I read it for a Lojong Mind Training class. There's a lot to learn in this book. The 59 slogans and explanations plus the 2 ending points made the book worthwhile.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 84 reviews

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