Student: The idea of a warrior is usually associated with territory or responding to a sense of danger. If we give up all territory, what is the motivation for having the spirit of a warrior?

Chogyam Trungpa: A warrior is not like a samurai who is looking for a job. You are not trying to be hired by anybody, not even by yourself. The idea of a warrior is based on a sense of fundamental fearlessness. There is no reason why you should be a coward. It’s as simple as that. You are not being a warrior because a state of war exists in your country. We are not trying to win against the egohood people. We are not trying to fight with them. You are being a warrior because you ARE a warrior. If someone asks you, “Are you twenty-one years old?” you say, “Yes, I am.” They don’t ask you WHY you are twenty-one years old or how you have done this. You would have no answer for that. You are just twenty-one. Warriorship is a basic sense of unshakeability. It’s a sense of immovability and self-existing dignity rather than that you are trying to fight with something else.

From “Meditation: The Way of the Buddha,” Talk Four, Naropa Institute, Boulder, Colorado, July 1 1974. Edited from an unpublished transcript.

All material by Chogyam Trungpa is copyright Diana J. Mukpo. Reprinted without permission.