Four reliances

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The four reliances (Tib. Tönpa shyi; rton pa bzhi)

1. Rely on the message of the teacher, not on his personality;
2. Rely on the meaning, not just on the words;
3. Rely on the real meaning, not on the provisional one;
4. Rely on your wisdom mind, not on your ordinary, judgemental mind.

See Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, chapter nine.


Alternative translation

1. Do not rely on individuals, rely on the teachings;
2. Do not rely on the words, rely on the meaning;
3. Do not rely on the provisional meaning rely on the definitive meaning;
4. Do not rely on intellectual knowledge, rely on wisdom.