Saturday, May 26, 2007

The Monk

After dropping a number of fairly obvious hints that went largely unnoticed, I finally got my mother to invite me to dinner last night with her and her colleagues and the Tibetan Lama that was visiting her school.

Lama Tenzin Yignyen--the bite-sized Buddhist-- is a 4 foot master monk full of charm, wit, and wisdom. He's a riddle wrapped in an enigma wrapped in cinnamon- and saffron-colored robes. He left Tibet at age 2, the Chinese PLA nipping at his heels, and was one of the first young disciples to study under the Dalai Lama in the new-Bu base camp at Dharmsala. He speaks Tibetan, Hindi, English, and Mongolian... he creates intricate colored sand mandalas and then sweeps them into the river... he chills out with Brad Pitt and Richard Gere.

As the Dalai Lama himself once put it: "This monk is off the chain!"

The funny story is that my mom's co-worker picked up this little monk in her Mini Cooper, and the monk cries out: "Finally! A car my size!" and starts petting the car fondly. Then he stops, straightens up, and goes: "Wait-- I must practice detachment...!"

Anyway, we had dinner with him and his two American hippy friends, a very nice couple consisting of a woman named Lotus and her husband Cristopher, who turns out to be Cab Calloway's grandson. We ate lots of Indian food, discussed Kaa Chakras and karma, and heard crazy party stories about the Dalai Lama's birthday bash.

Good times, ya'll, good times.

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