Monday, December 26, 2011


Reptiles peer at the stars through applied mathematics – romanticise in logarithms and quadratic equations
Reptiles re-define ‘longing’ as a factor of binary systems: yes no yes no yes no yes no yes no yes no—yes?
Reptiles drink instant coffee—are rationalistic—smoke air-vent filtered cigarettes: ‘Expert Texpert Tipped’.
Reptiles are: nonchalant about inglorious military background – send cards from continental countries saying:
“I’ll be in touch.” Reptiles like to touch – but they’re not touched—they’d—like to equate one thing with another.
Reptiles know about the speed of light—well at least on paper—but, reptiles do not know about radiance.
Reptiles are radiant from source – but codify that with extrapolated calculations, of which love plays no part
Of which the vector of joy plays no part—of which startling cheer plays no part—of which nothing plays a part;
Merely calculus colluding with catatonia in clandestine collaboration with anchovies and arachnid calamistrum.

Chögyam is not tremendously talented when it comes to songs – he just sings wild, and the words gallop:
“Hey – how about you and me Babe? Fall in Love with Chögyam! Chögyam’s sitting right here grinning!”
Chögyam’s stark staring open to anything! Like: Luiciano Pavarotti. Like: molto vivace. Like: mol en tropo.
Like flaming Sambucca sambhogakaya: one hour and thirty five seconds to go before the Earth fragments.
Come to the Italian restaurant with Chögyam! Let affection swell in your heart like a tidal wave of embers.
How could anyone have any doubt? Smiling waitress knows. Garlic bread knows; constellation pizza knows;
Crisp frosty night knows; rampant river-of-song knows; shoulder-slung carpetbag knows; love always knows –
But reptiles think they have all the time in the world—while—milliseconds tick away: calibrated in perspective
Oblivious of light years’ of heart sensation. Reptiles kill time for fear of exquisite sarcasm and pertinent poetry.

Reptiles murder minutes to avoid felicitous infatuation; exquisite lust; exquisite passion; exquisite tenderness;
Chögyam is not entirely unlike a reptile: he also gazes at stars – but sees what he sees, without need of slide-rules.
Reptile radical reductionist recidivism is all very well—it’ll suffice at a pinch—but, it’s not for you my dear.
Ignominious interspecies communication is no substitute for the pluripotential poetry of a lover’s sparkling appetite
Chögyam sits at the breakfast table, cluttered with passionate debris of uncertainty and pulchritudinous perfection:
Spacious clutter; cluttered spaciousness; cluttered heart; spacious heart; voluble visionary vortex vocabulary;
Raging ocean of unconditioned potentiality; raw moment of existent-non-existence, billowing through the clutter
In love with life’s momentary focus—unfocused—contained in containerlessness. Sheer blur of past and present.
Tingle of emergent future fluttering in flurries – but—now—is brilliant: sleight of hand in tandem with awe.

Perfect Gruyere omelette. Perfect yellow earth element: insubstantiality – solidity; equanimity – intransigence;
Escape-clause – return-clause; sanity-clause – insanity-clause; Sana-di-Clause and his riotous red-nosed reindeer,
Flawless aria: pure gliding woman’s voice—searing liquid leap of love—incites the nervous system like, violin bow –
And tears of knowing and not-knowing brim orchestrated – while reptiles check out ticker tape technicalities
Reptiles—when seeking solace—access modest melancholia through the baleful borborygm of banal balladeers.
But—it’d only be fair to point out—they not fussy about high fidelity . . . fidelity isn’t the name of the game
Although, it—could—make all the difference between relaying it by x-ray impulse to specific set of co-ordinates
Within the swirling crimson viridian gaseous claws of the Crab Nebula, or having it jam up the cassette machine
And spooling unsightly coils of magnetic-spaghetti in suspicious screeds across the open expanse of kitchen tiles.

Space is dancing within itself – voluptuous whirling whorls of incandescent star-matter seen by acrid reptilians
Through sordid contrivance key-hole radio telescope bolted to prurient concert bunker backstreet planetarium
Ticker-tape amusement arcade of scientific instrumentation sets out to undress the lady: ‘What the Butler Saw’,
‘What the astrophysicist might like to see.’ Reptile’s-eye-view on the universe is not for lovers. Love is being itself,
Love is melting into itself. Love is not illicit key-hole. Love is not duality - even though love celebrates duality
In the dissolution of duality: nondual duality; dual nonduality – or indwelling duel where only jewels fall in love?
One and one, is one. Two is, one and one. Three is, neither here nor there – is that so goddamn complicated?
Chögyam says: “I know I skipped the maths class—but I can still play the percentages – just walk ten paces;
Turn, and see what happens.” The Dakinis sing: “Just walk away René, I don’t want you to follow me back home.”

Chögyam stares wide-eyed into star-lit night. Even though bifröst is frosty, Valhalla vaunts voluptuous valkyries
The view might be superior through precision contrivances but mountain peaks alone admire the ocean of space.
The Stars Burn (it’s the risk they take). Love selects holidays in Brittany, samples local wine and moules marinière,
Love says: “We’re in this Moment Now!” Memory’s unreliable – Chögyam can’t tell one moment from the next,
Chögyam just opens his mouth: sings—fortissimo—whatever enters his head: Ravings of a mild mannered maniac.
Tantra performs itself – loves every sub-atomic particle of you: vision of you; echo of you; delirious dream of you
Salacious savour; sensory sentience; taintless tantalean tango—tant mieux—in the parfumerie of perfect pulchritude
Roiling immeasurable through volatile vastness; ocean from waves, mutually indistinguishable in mid-Atlantic swell.

Chögyam’s heroine holds many implements: overdue library books, gefilte fish, partially dismantled shopping trolleys;
She tends to cautiously coruscated cappuccino conundrums – but with Chögyam it’s all there to see, nothing to hide.
Love tiptoes through cerebral sewing machines with charismatic virtuosity – makes gourmet breakfast seduction
Wears red trousers at the British Broadcasting Corporation, where he says: “Tantra is the hot blood of kindness.”
Reptiles may well have calculated that love is a distended curve reducible as a series of mathematical symbols –
Chögyam would argue that emotions can’t be précised in academic terms which always end it seems, in the Summer.
There’s a universe of unicycling eunuchs and university degrees in unilateralism – but there’s an uncertainty factor:
Elliptical digestions enunciated in epicurean Euclid – sometimes square; sometimes circular; sometimes conical;
Sometimes glowing conspicuously like the cusped horns of a crescent moon becoming a point-instant of space.

Chögyam loves everything: chameleons, geckos, iguanas, crocodiles, alligators, amphisbænids, caimans, and gavials
Loves every rip-tide reptile recognised by zoology. Loves even lizards. Loves the future wives and children of lizards!
Chögyam says: “May their measurement be joy!” Chögyam says: “How—do—you jolly-well do; pleased to meet you.”
He would certainly never break a reptile’s nose with a brisk left hook, followed by a swift jab to the solar plexus.
Chögyam would certainly never buffalo a reptile across the head with the barrel of a .45 hog-leg Peacemaker
He’s never cut the interminable interstices of a reptile’s string vest. He’d rather sits in the presence of here-and-there
Drinking Chianti Classico. Humming in assorted Sanskrit. Whatever will happen? Chögyam says: “We’ll wait and see.”
Chögyam grins like a flamingo’s attaché case – like a flamenco dancer’s walnut-veneer cabinet of sharpened surprises.
Grins like flammivomous fecundity – exclaiming “Good morning reptiles everywhere! It’s a lovely November day!”

15th of November 1988

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About Doc Togden (Ngakpa Chögyam)

As the caption on the author-designed cover of Doc Togden's (Ngakpa Chögyam) upcoming collection of poetry ravings of a mild mannered maniac reads:

Tantra is Art - and a tantrika explores the sense-fields through the Arts. This work paints with the cadences of language - because the poet is both a painter and musician. He marvels at existence whilst lampooning the prevalent sociopathy of spirituality. As semantic Jazz - linguistic density jives with space, taking readers into realms where linear logic is only one possible vector amongst many. Comedy and tragedy dance, provoking a cascade of surreal impressions that change with each reading. Rock & Roll lyrics sung by dakinis erupt in counterpoint to the paradoxical hymns of a 'vicar or vajrayana' - a trans-Atlantic Englishman who raves, tongue-in-cheek, on the nature of reality. This is the first volume to be published in the contemporary genre of 'Critical Mass Poetics' as defined by the author and his students.

On the phenomenon of having two names, he writes:

"I appeared on FaceBook as Doc Togden because I wanted a fresh start in terms of the Arts. I have often found a dual prejudice to exist. If one presents as a musician / artist one is not taken seriously by Buddhists. If one presents as a Buddhist one is not taken seriously by musicians / artists. This is obviously a generalisation – and as such, probably meaningless for anyone apart from myself. It is true however, that Captain Beefheart had to give up his Rock musician persona to be taken seriously as a painter. A few Tibetan Lamas—such a Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche—have managed to evade the censorious radar of common opinion – but the same largesse of view would not seem available to the inconsequential eccentric yogi and yogini. Doc Togden is as much my name as Ngakpa Chögyam because the name on my passport—and other legal documents—is Dr Chögyam Togden. The Tibetan designation ‘ngakpa’ is hard to pronounce for most people and so, as I have a doctorate in Vajrayana Psychology I use that in everyday association outside my rôle as Lama. The title doctor releases me from having to designate myself by gender and appeals to my sense of humour vis-à-vis my fondness for Doc Holliday and a variety of musicians who have ‘Doc’ as their first name. I have five FaceBook friends called Doc and they are all musicians.

The time has now arrived to merge Doc Togden and Ngakpa Chögyam – and to allow them to be as they have always been. Hopefully those who may have looked askance at either will feel reconciled to the fact that they can talk with me as an artist and Buddhist teacher without feeling wary on the one hand or fearful of potential religious polemic on the other. I have no desire to convert anyone to Buddhism – but I do have a desire to offer aspects of Buddhism to the world of Art and Art to those who practise Buddhism. I believe there to be a common language – an essential language that speaks of the timeless efflorescence of the elements. The Arts arise from vision—from the empty space of primal creativity—and that space is the space everyone can access. Buddhists say that everyone is essentially a Buddha. I take from that that everyone is essentially an Artist. Now . . . did Ngakpa Chögyam say that, or did Doc Togden say that? Who ever said it, he’d also like to say that there is essentially no difference."

On Facebook, Doc Togden (Ngakpa Chögyam) describes himself as a "Teacher / Artist: painter; poet; author; life-style choreographer, and musician (vocalist, harp, rhythm bass, and 12 string / resophonic guitars)."

In reference to the roles of "Teacher" and "life-style choreographer", the informed reader will notice the uncanny resemblance of Doc Togden (Ngakpa Chögyam) to Ngak'chang Rinpoche, whom together with Khandro Déchen are the lineage holders of the Aro gTér. The Aro gTér is a stream of Vajrayana Buddhism in which ordination is congruous with romance, marriage, and family life that focuses on the teaching and practice of the Inner Tantras from the point of view of Dzogchen, an essential non-dual teaching.

As a writer, Doc Togden's (Ngakpa Chögyam) most recent books include an odd boy and wisdom eccentrics.