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Lions Roar : January 2012
SHAMBHALA SUN JANUARY 2012 36 where an artistic sensibility could be an integral part of higher education. Education at Naropa, he said, would marry intellect and intuition. As Gimian points out, in the Japanese notion of do, or way—as in chado, the way of tea, or kado, the way of flow- ers—he saw a model for how secular activities of all kinds could become paths to awakening. Drawing on formal training in flower arranging, he used it as a means to convey certain principles, such as heaven, earth, and human—with heaven representing open space, earth the ground, and human that which joins the dichotomy. In theater, he created exercises that helped actors engage the space around them, coming to know relaxation by knowing tension. In visual arts, he explored the process of perception, the interplay between the investigating mind that looks and the big mind that sees. These teachings formed the basis for a program called dharma art, which used simple exer- cises like arranging objects to help students go beyond the limits of perception based on ego’s small reference points. He and a team of students created art installations containing outsized arrange- ments of natural and constructed objects that could bring on a blanking of the mind. (These can be seen in the film Discovering Elegance.) In the path of dharma art, the worldly and the spiri- tual completely intermingled, and became in his words “an atomic bomb you carry in your mind.” 6 . Victory Over War By the mid-seventies, what had begun as a loose association of hippies following a guru evolved into a multifaceted community. People had grown up and taken on families and greater responsi- bilities. Trungpa Rinpoche had begun to emphasize care in how you dressed and conducted your household. There were simple protocols. For talks, for example, he expected students to sit up and pay attention rather than sprawl about. Senior teachers CREATING ENLIGHTENED SOCIETY SEMINAR, KARMÊ CHÖLING, 1986. PHOTO BY MARVIN MOORE