I'd bet Rinpoche would be somewhat dismayed at the adversarial tone.
Your probably right (he said, hanging his head in shame). Baaaaaaaaad Student!
Thanx for the reality check.
I haven't read the book yet. Full disclosure.
But I was talking with one of Rinpoche's long-time translators, over the weekend, and we discussed the book. His summary was that it was Dharma "stripped" of cultural trappings,
I suppose that would be Tyler?
Whatever. But I think the estimate you received is pretty accurate. It's not like DPR presents some argument to strip Buddhism of it's cultural components. As your friend points out (correctly) the presentation found in the book is fair devoid of culture tarpping. That's all. That's what is meant by saying he "presents an argument. The argument to reduce culrture trappping is demonstrated in the book itself, not some sort of advocacy for a paradigm shift. What DPR wrote would likely be recieved equally by Theravedins, Mahayanists, Vajarayana students, Thais, Koreans, Kenyans Americans and yes, even Swedes and Canadians
. It's not like a discussion of the Heart Sutra that would only be relevant to the Mahayana. In fact, it occured to me that were it not for the author's name on the cover, it could be easily be attributed to a Theravedin author. In fact the only thing about this book a Theravedin might object to is DPR's habit of not citing his references to sutra by chapter and verse, but then he nver really does that anyway.
and he felt it was a "go-to" book for the 21st Century, in the same way many of us found Trungpa's "Myth of Freedom" or "Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism" so profound for our paths, back in the late 20th Century, heh heh.
As much as I adore DPR, I'd be hesitant to put Rebel Buddha up there with MOF or CTSM, even though it's possible this book could be that ground-breaking, especially with DPR's fellow Gen-Xers.
The Dharma IS something that transcends culture, and the message can be given in a straightforward way. And I'm sure Dzokchen Ponlop Rinpoche is a master who can do this, without "leaving anything out" or somehow making it "Dharma Lite(tm)" like so many of these so-called "Western Buddhism" books and approaches do.....
I would have to say DPR has the ability to teach a profound, yet elegant dharma and not go to "Dharma Lite".
Although I'm frankly dismayed by the "self-help Buddhism" image, the "meditation as psychotherapy" posture, and the crass materialism and "dumbing down"
of "Dharma" in the West, I've also found that the "exotic" trappings --the bells and whistles (kanglings?), etc., so to speak--can sometimes become more important than the message itself.
I totally agree. There's an element of what I'd call "New Ager Buddhism" lurking out there. I also think the dumbing-down you see - stripping the Dharma down into bite-sized chunks devoid of anything that may require serious thought/ analysis.
I look forward to reading the book, by the way...but I do my practices in Tibetan, with my Thangkas and my Drilbu and Damaru, etc.....while thinking (mainly) in English!
Once you've read it, I for one would be VERY interested in anything you might want to share.
I do a lot of my practice in Tibetan as well. I find a certain beauty there that English simply can't offer yet. I still need a ton of damaru practice - I could go for a Damaru for Dummies video. My wife asked me what I wanted for Christmas and I said a Bell/Dorje set (yeah I know that's kind wierd).
I don't know if your friend metioned this, but almost the entire Nalandabodhi practice liturgy is in English. No Tibetan or phonetics. Even our sadhanas such as Kongchock Chidu are in English save for the mantras. In that respect it's a lot like the Shambhala chant book. I think Rinpoche has been serious for a long time about keeping the culture trappings in what he's teaching to a minimum. On the other hand there are some things you simply can't do right now without an element of foreign culture thrown in. Dharma and it's practices aren't that well developed in the west - we don't have the "language" yet.