Four types of isolate 四孤起(因明用語)

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There are four types of isolate (Tib. ལྡོག, Wyl. ldog):

  • meaning isolate (Tib. དོན་ལྡོག Wyl. don ldog),
  • illustration isolate (Tib. གཞི་ལྡོག, Wyl. gzhi ldog),
  • generality isolate (Tib. སྤྱི་ལྡོག , Wyl. spyi ldog), and
  • self isolate (Tib. རང་ལྡོག, rang ldog).

The meaning isolate of a thing is its definition; the illustration isolate, an illustrative instance of that thing. For example, the meaning isolate of a functioning thing is ‘that which is able to perform a function’; an illustration isolate of a functioning thing is a particular pot. Generality isolate and self isolate are synonymous and refer to, for example, the mere pot focused on by thought consciousness that does not conceive of any particular pot or even of the meaning of pot.[1]


  1. Pur-bu-jok, ‘The Lesser Path of Reasoning’ in ‘Knowledge and Liberation’ by Anne Klein. Note 24.