Four kinds of treatise 四論/四種造論方式

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In general, there are four kinds of treatise (Tib. བསྟན་བཅོས་བཞི།) :

  1. a treatise that imposes order on what appears disorganized (Tib. འཁྲུགས་པ་བསྡེབ་པའི་བསྟན་བཅོས།);
  2. a treatise that elucidates difficult points (Tib. གབ་པ་འབྱིན་པའི་བསྟན་བཅོས། );
  3. a treatise that brings together scattered elements (Tib. འཐོར་བ་སྡུད་པའི་བསྟན་བཅོས།); and
  4. a treatise that is composed with a view to practice (Tib. སྒྲུབ་པ་ཉམས་ལེན་གྱི་བསྟན་བཅོས།)[1]


  1. Khenpo Kunpal, The Nectar of Manjushri’s Speech, a Detailed Commentary on Shantideva’s Way of the Bodhisattva, p.35/36, Translated by the Padmakara Translation Group, published by Shambhala, ISBN 978-1-59030-439-6.

Further Reading

For a more elaborate classification see:

  • Appendix 2 in Wisdom Nectar: Dudjom Rinpoche’s Heart Advice, pp. 354-364, The Tsadra Foundation Series, ISBN 10 1-55939-224-X, and:
  • Dudjom Rinpoche, The Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism, Wisdom Publications, pp.88-109, ISBN 0-86171-199-9.

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