"Life leads the thoughtful man on a path of many windings" In my mid 30s I tarried for several years hanging with the Tibetans of the Sakya lineage in exile in Seattle., What preceded that encounter by a decade was My reading Trumpa Rincoche "The lions roar".Trumpa was an extremely engaging author. Trumpa was an obvious and very public Alcoholic. He remained both until the day he died. My then father in law and Iwere speaking of such things and I brought up a quote from trumpa in which he said "I like alcohol ,it always tells you exactly where we are at." I asked my father in law what he thought as the incongruity was striking for me. The lion's Roar was profound deeply penetrating piece of work. His reply just about summed up how I felt. "As an ex-drunk I have to say that's the best excuse I've ever heard for alcoholism." I agreed and we moved on. Some 40 years later I received another piece of the puzzle. Trumpa, now dead, has been replaced in duties by his son. beyond that I remember little of where or when this took place. He is answering questions from a group of followers. He's asked the big one! "Why was your dad a drunk if he was enlightened?" His answer turned me completely around. I'm only paraphrasing as that all my memory is good for. "You know if you get drunk once in a great while you'll probably think it great fun despite the hang over. You might miss an important event the next day, but you can make it up to whom ever later. My dad didn't do that. He drank all day every day. Yet he was a great father. My mother loved him dearly. He kept all his appointments. His students were devoted to him. Imagine having to live your life as a drunk. But never oversleeping. Never taking a day off. Never losing your temper with those you maybe at odds with. In all ways being a wise man...whose a drunk but acts as wise men do. This was my fathers path. One he had to walk alone almost always misunderstood." His words reconciled the unrecognizable for me and bridged two very different traditions. "It is not what a man puts into his mouth that defiles a man. it is what comes out of his mouth that defiles him. Jesus Christ. Trumpa never defiled himself. There's some thing else I can hang on this, that may or may not help us clarify. Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, an incredible dance team. When ask which was better of the team Fred said "She did everything I did, but she did it backwards and in high heels.".