8. Faith, Devotion and Confidence


A Dharma Teaching by His Holiness Rimay Gyalten Sogdzin Rinpoche


Section 8


Faith, Devotion and Confidence


Today I would like to explain the Faith, Devotion and Confidence again for everyone’s benefit.

So, what are the Four Faiths?

The Four Faiths are:

Clear Faith.

Longing Faith.

Confident Faith.

Irreversible Faith.

Now The Clear Faith is when we first realize what wonderful and extraordinary qualities the Buddha, and our Root-Guru possesses; our mind becomes very clear and joyful.

The Longing Faith is when clear faith inspires us to obtain the Root-Guru's perfect qualities in order to help beings that fill-up space.

The Confident Faith is when we know with complete certainty that the Root-Guru's qualities are truly as they were described by the Buddha himself.

Finally, the Irreversible Faith is when faith has become so much a part of our self that even at the cost of our own life, there is no way we could ever renounce it.

As we follow the path of Buddha-Dharma, we will come to know these four faiths and the profound effects they have on us. Sometimes there are no words to fully explain the feelings we experience, but I think and I hope that we will find this information to be helpful.

FAITH: What is Faith?

Short Definition: Faith is absolute trust and confidence.

Absolute trust and confidence in the Three Jewels and Three Roots is to have true Buddhist faith.

Buddhist faith is having 100% trust and no doubt in the power, compassion and wisdom of the Three Jewels and Three Roots.

Faith is never giving up. With faith, devotion and confidence, anything and everything is possible. So we should always remember the bodhicitta as the main practice, because that is the best way to increase our faith, devotion, and confidence. With confidence we can easily help our selves to accomplish our goals, as well as help others accomplish their goals.

DEVOTION: What is Devotion?

Short Definition: Putting total faith, trust, and attention in something.

Devotion to the Three Jewels and Three Roots is putting total faith, trust, effort, energy, and confidence in the wisdom, power, and compassion of the Three Jewels and the Three Roots.

Whatever practice we do the most, whatever are our spiritual habits—these are our devotion.

Also, devotion means worship, prayer, recitation mantra, circumambulation, etc. In a good sense devotion is our awareness of the positive power of the Three Jewels and Three Roots.

CONFIDENCE: What is confidence?

Short Definition: Confidence is being without doubt.

Two types of confidence:

Confidence in the Three Jewels and the Three Roots.

Confidence in achieving enlightenment.

Confidence has the ability to achieve our goal. Without confidence, without devotion, without these we do not have focus. So we need confidence and devotion to develop focus. With confidence and devotion our goal will always be met. Confidence is like the energy and devotion is like the view, when we combine them we have the focus. Confidence is also like awareness. When we have confidence in the Three Jewels and Three Roots then everything we wish for can be realized.

With confidence we can easily help others accomplish their goals and we can easily accomplish our own goals and wishes.

May the Buddha-Dharma flourish, and together with diligent practice, there is a place in the Pure Land for everyone.


Rimay Oral Instructions:

If you meditate in the day time, you will reach Enlightenment in the day time.

If you meditate at night time, you will attain Enlightenment in the night time.

The methods of the Buddhist Path are so powerful and easy to practice.

Whenever you practice, Enlightenment will follow you.


Five rules for living a happy and meaningful life

1) Free our heart from anger and hatred.

That means when we are free from anger and hatred, we will become peaceful, happy, and have the bodhisattva-mind.

2) Free our minds from worry and unhappiness.

That means when we free our mind from worry and unhappiness, we are happier, have more bodhicitta, and have more Thoughts of Enlightenment.

3) Always give or share more and more.

That means you share your happiness, you spirituality, you share your prosperity, time, energy, and you become a generous person.

4) Always live simply.

Which means you have more satisfaction, you are grateful, you have more gratitude in your heart, and, basically, you appreciate whatever you have at this moment.

5) Always expect less.

Which means when you expect less, you will never be disappointed. We do have plans and goals, and when they are achieved we are very happy, but if they are not achieved we are not too disappointed, and we still keep trying again and again.

His Holiness always said that being happy and smiling is very good for your life.  And he, who did not smile, would lower his voice and say, “do as I say not as I do.”


In conclusion, His Holiness always says that we should stay solid or stable in body, speech, and mind, and use our best power and effort to have faith, devotion and confidence in our monastery, village, and our environment, and always do the best to help out. In this way we will be satisfied. In the meantime, we should always:

  1. Recognize all appearances and phenomenon as the manifestation and blessing of the Three Jewels and Three Roots,
  2. Recognize all sounds, mantras and prayers as the sound or voice of the Three Jewels and Three Roots,
  3. Recognize all actions as the accumulation of merit and wisdom.


In this way, whatever we see, hear, or do is in essence the manifestation blessing of the Three Jewels and Three Roots.

Three Jewels and Three Roots:

Buddha is the Refuge. Dharma is the Protector. Sangha is the confidence or friend.

Guru is the purified Vajra-mind. Yidam is all accomplishments. Protector is inspiration and supporter.

Another way to see is that: Buddha is the doctor, Dharma is the medicine and the Noble Sangha is the nurse.

Also, Guru is the generator, while the yidam is the light bulb, and the Protectors are the switch

His Holiness always says that the Guru is our mother because mothers take care of all our needs and look after our well being, the Yidam is our father because fathers provide for us and the Protectors are our grandparents because they are always protecting us and keeping us safe. 

Always, when you recognize your parents, your children, your relatives and Root-Lama and you see them as humans just like you are human, then whatever they do you will still have forgiveness for them, and all activities will be very easy, and accomplishments will come naturally and you will be peaceful.

Whenever you feel uncomfortable and are facing obstacles, you have to challenge them; you have to remember that you are doing this practice for your loved ones, family, friends, and guru. When you face obstacles like this, when you think of others first, then everything you do will have the blessing of the Three Jewels and Three Roots and the obstacles will be removed and accomplishments will come easy.

Remember, when we put our own wishes first then we will become last, but when we think of others and serve others first, then we will get ahead.