Thursday, January 06, 2011

True Grit and Lojong

The Utne Reader is running with an article on actor Jeff Bridges that makes you want to go see his interpretation of the iconic John Wayne role in the remake of the classic American motion picture True Grit.

It seems that throughout production, Bridges was buried deep in Trungpa's Training the Mind and Cultivating Loving-Kindness. 

He tells the interviewer:
"I don’t know if it has anything to do with the lojong thing, but most things do, in a weird way. A bunch of things are popping into my mind. [Pause] “True grit” means that you’re courageous. The habitual tendency when things get tough is that we protect ourselves, we get hard, we get rigid [makes a chopping gesture]—bapbapbapbap. But with this lojong idea, it’s completely topsy-turvy. When we want to get hard and stiff and adamant, that’s the time to soften and see how we might play or dance with the situation. Then everything is workable. In True Grit, my character—all the characters are that way."
It is fascinating, over the past forty years or so, to observe Buddhism slowly work its influence on American popular culture. It is even more fascinating to observe Trungpa Rinpoche's legacy spread in ever-widening rings of influence -- like a pebble thrown in a pool of still water. Really, I want to say that Trungpa Rinpoche's greatness cannot be measured in a century -- what he did for us will live for all time.


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2 reader comments:

Cliff said...

The ripples are still moving out - and they are also meeting ripples coming back towards us from the farthest distance. Trungpa will continue to resonate with us and for us beyond what I can conceive of as "time."

Anonymous said...

But did you like the film?