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The Four Reliances - Essay Example

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The Four Reliances Name: Professor: Course: Date: Introduction In Buddha religion, the followers are taught many aspects, which help them spiritually, mentally and psychologically. These aspects taught are believed to help in elevating the morals of a Buddhist…
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The Four Reliances Introduction In Buddha religion, the followers are taught many aspects, which help them spiritually, mentally and psychologically. These aspects taught are believed to help in elevating the morals of a Buddhist. These aspects therefore, have a positive value to all the Buddha people because they are geared toward assisting the Buddha people. For instance, such aspects include the four reliances. The four reliances states that someone should not depend on a messenger’s personality but should rely on their message, someone should not depend on the words but should depend on the meaning. The other reliances state that reliance should be on intention (real meaning) but not on speculation (provisional meaning) and the last states, that someone should not depend on self- grasping mind (normal, judgemental mind) but should depend on their mind’s of wisdom. The first reliance, which majors on the message and the messenger mean that when making a decision on which principle to depend on someone should not get satisfied with the reputation or fame of a Dharma (teacher) but should examine what the Dharma teaches.1 If, upon examination, one discovers that the teachings are sensible and perfect, they should recognize them. However, if the teachings lack the qualities one ought to reject them even if the Dharma is charismatic or well known. Reliance number two, which majors on the dependence on meaning rather than words, simply means that someone should not be affected simply by the oratorical or poetic style of a teaching but is suppose to recognize it if the definite denotation of the oratorical or poetic styles is reasonable. Reliance number three, which chiefly focuses on intention and speculation, means that the satisfaction of somebody should not be merely based on the interpretive denotation of conformist truth. The satisfaction should be based on the acceptance of ultimate meaning of the definitive reality of emptiness. In other language, because the technique teachings on bodhichitta and the knowledge teachings on bareness are companions, someone should not get satisfaction with only a single teaching should apply both teachings together.2 The last reliance simply means that someone should not get satisfaction from the impure, misleading situations of awareness but should base their reliance on meditative equipoise wisdom of the superior beings. The four reliances have a connection with the historical, biblical criticism; the reliances advices on the practice of some principles have historically been criticized by the bible. For instance, the first reliance, which focuses on, the message and the messenger is criticized by the bible because the bible advises that Christians all Jesus teachings must be followed without questioning. The bible, therefore, historically criticizes the first reliance because it goes against believing every message that the Christ delivered to his followers. Moreover, the biblical criticism of the reliance is shown because in Christianity the bible advices that nobody should go against what Jesus taught; therefore, there is no freedom for opinion. In the reliance, however, there is free opinion since either someone can accept a teaching or can oppose it. This is the chief point of contact that the reliance has with historical, biblical criticism. The point of connection, however, is undergoing a departure from the historical, biblical criticism because most Christians nowadays tend to question some teachings or messages that Jesus delivered to them. Some Christians are even going against some Jesus teachings and, therefore, are embracing this reliance. This clearly shows that the criticism that has historically been focused toward the reliance of Buddhism by the Bible is slowly fading away in Christianity. The general evaluation of the four reliances can be that they are worth in assisting people in having independent thinking, being intelligent and being morally upright.3 For instance, the first reliance models people into having and independent mind because it gives the freedom of criticizing any message delivered. Furthermore, the fact that it gives someone the freedom of accepting a message or not accepting helps in making someone morally upright because the person cannot take wrong teachings. The second reliance is also appropriate because it enables someone to widen the thinking by not only focusing on the words but also the meaning. The reliance number three is appropriate because it raises somebody’s intelligence and makes the person to think independently through advising on the need to look into a reality deeply and understand it. Finally, the fourth reliance is also helpful because it makes people grow morally upright since it focuses on modelling people morally. The four reliances are therefore, helpful however; the first reliance to some extent can mislead because a student can end up not understanding a teaching well hence will go ahead and reject it even if it could have helped them. Conclusion In summary, it seems that the four reliances were created to assist in the perfect upbringing of the people of the Buddha religion. The reliances therefore have a positive value since they deal with the spiritualism of the people of Buddha religion. Moreover, they have also helped in the maintenance of Buddha religion. Reference Watts, Alan. 1995. Buddhism, the religion of no-religion: the edited transcripts. Boston: C.E. Tuttle. Read More
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