Friday, February 06, 2009

You Know You're A rGyalpo If....

From a puerile, most ill-considered, and inadvisable effort (which shall here go nameless) comes the speculation that one must beware of those who wear broad-brimmed felt hats.

They might be rGyalpos!

According to Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche, (and let me be clear: he isn't the one mentioned above, but a rather more credible source) a rGyalpo, or "king spirit," is not always negative. Some rGyalpo are in fact important guardians, such as Pehar, who guards Samye.

Still, there are rGyalpos and then there are rGyalpos.

As a broad class, humans believe that rGyalpos "always provoke people with nervousness, confusion, and being upset." rGyalpos, on the other hand, believe that humans are their own authors of nervousness, and confusion. Accordingly, they sometimes like to manifest as lamas, and hold up mirrors that expose vain hypocrisy. Seeing their own reflections in these mirrors, people become terrified, and resort to charms to bind the rGyalpos, such as those depicted below.

Little do they realize that all they need bind is themselves: their own minds.

Being a rGyalpo is a lousy job. One is either being slavishly supplicated or roundly vilified. Since the same could be said of lamas, it is easy to see how the two might have a community of interest in holding up mirrors, and why rGyalpos are happily convinced to guard Dharma personalities and institutions.

Still, there are some benefits. rGyalpos sometimes have a chance to meet other rGyalpos. What might happen next would be pure conjecture on my part. For example: where or how these rGyalpo might meet in time and space could have a profound effect.

Nevertheless, we have these romantic notions about our lives, and we shamelessly project these notions onto the lives of others. I mean to say, who really knows what rGyalpos look like? They are not, after all, the product of Mommy and Daddy rGyalpos.

Nor is it appropriate to think that they go around wearing signs or other identifying insignia.

rGyalpos are no joke. They are nothing to be trifled with. Rather, there is a school of thought claiming them as the reincarnations of very high lamas or powerful yogis who died violently. Here, for example, are three photographs from the Dalai Lama's site which serve to advance the thesis that rGyalpos can create new rGyalpos.

This is not a game for children anymore, now is it?

There are in fact some particularly vicious rGyalpos lurking about, so be careful to always carry a torch when venturing on the moor at night.

Or when visiting a temple, for that matter.

Stumble Upon Toolbar

0 reader comments: