The Four Thoughts of the Instruction Lineage are not the same as the traditional Four Reminders in the Kagyu lineage Ngondro text. Rather these Four Thoughts are a super -set that include those Four Reminders.
In these Talks, given at the 1998 Treasury of Knowledge Retreat in Texas, Rinpoche presents an extensive explanation of these Four Thoughts: (1) the thought that turns the mind to dharma, (2) the thought that turns the mind away from samsara, (3) the thought that turns the mind away from temporary peace and (4) the thought that turns the mind away from duality. The thought that rurns the mind to dharma includes the first two traditional reminders in the Ngondro text (precious human birth and impermanence).
The thought that turns the mind away from samsara includes the third and fourth reminders (karma, cause and result and the suffering of samsara). Rinpoche explains each of these thoughts and reminders in great detail and from a Mahayana perspective. For example, precious human birth is explained in terms of confidence, diligence, knowledge, wisdom and compassion in addition to the traditionally-taught eight freedoms and ten resources. This detailed presentation provides a wonderful resource for studying these Four Thoughts. Perhaps more importantly, however, these talks provide ample material from which practitioners can draw inspiration for contemplating the traditonal Four Reminders.
The Four Thoughts of the Instruction Lineage, Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, 5 talks, 7 CDs, June 1998, Vajra Echoes, $42.00
The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche is acknowledged as one of the foremost scholars of his generation in the Nyingma and Kagyu schools of Tibetan Buddhism. Fluent in English and well-versed in Western culture, Rinpooche has worked to develop and adapt traditional Tibetan education curriculums for Western audiences. Nitartha Institute (www.nitharthainstitute.org), where Rinpoche is the main teacher, provides a focused Buddhist studies program. Rinpoche is a visiting professor of buddhist philosopy at Naropa University, Boulder, Colorado. In 1997, Rinpoche founded Nalanabodhi to preserve the genuine lineage of the Nyingma and Kagyu Schools of Tibetan Buddhism. There are Nalandabodhi centers in North America and Europe, and curriculum materials are available to people worldwide.