James Rigzin Hinds

I met Kunga Dawa at a Level 1 Shambhala Training in 2013, in Toronto. I was a volunteer for the participants. When he walked in to the center, he appeared to me as an ordinary practitioner, someone coming for the teachings; I hadn't seen his picture before so I didn't know it was him until he sat infront of the participants to teach! He had a natural, humble, and cheerful way about him. I recall Kunga speaking about beginning a daily meditation practice, and if I remember correctly, I believe he said that "14 minutes" a day was a good place to start. I also recall questioning him on that number, and I claimed that Trungpa said, "7 minutes" for beginners, as a suggestion. He questioned me back, and re-verified his assertion of 14 minutes. I sort of felt embarrassed, because I didn't have the name of the right text to back up my claim. Turns out it was the Sakyong who used the "7 minutes" suggestion, not his father, the Vidyadhara. Anyways, at the time, I felt that I was a bit arrogant in pointing this out so directly, in public, and also without feeling solid in my source. He was light-hearted. Later that day, I was fortunate to get a 1 on 1 interview with him. I apologized for how I spoke, and said something to the effect of, "I could feel Trungpa's wrath with my arrogance!" I was imaginative at the time, a young neophyte in Vajrayana. He said, with a hearty laugh, "It's just a projection of your mind!" I'll never forget it. Wishing you a safe and successful journey in the bardo, dear brother. Love James Rigzin