An Explanation of The Noble Sutra on the Four Factors

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This short commentary, An Explanation of The Noble Sutra on the Four Factors (Tib. འཕགས་པ་ཆོས་བཞི་པའི་རྣམ་པར་བཤད་པ།, Wyl. ‘phags pa chos bzhi pa’i rnam par bshad pa) ascribed to Vasubandhu, explains The Noble Mahayana Sutra on the Four Factors (Toh 251), a discourse on a set of four factors of the path of a bodhisattva: the thought of awakening, the spiritual friend, the twin qualities of tolerance and lenience, and dwelling in the forest. The commentary proposes various reasons for the sutra’s composition and explains why it refers to bodhisattvas as followers of the Great Vehicle. It also specifies the four factors, which obstructive elements these factors overcome, which beneficial elements they support, and why shravakas and pratyekabuddhas are not called bodhisattvas.[1]


The Tibetan translation of this shastra can be found in the Sutra commentary section of the Tibetan Dergé Tengyur, Toh 3990.


  1. 84000 Translating the Words of the Buddha.