སེམས་པ་བཟང་པོ་ཡོད་རེད། རེད། ?


This phrase came up and I got confused about the modes of the verb “to be”.
It was taught that ཡིན། རེད། are used when it is talking about the essence of something (like the portuguese “ser”), whereas ཡོད། ཡོད་རེད། འདུག is used for how something exists (like “estar” in portuguese).

However, this example was given:

“My classmates are kind-heartded.”

Brazillians would use the verb “ser” there, so I thought we would use རེད། but instead it was translated as:


Does it mean that in essence they’re not kind-hearted but right now they are acting or expressing kind-heartedness?

Thank you!

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Good question! It might be helpful to think of the evidentials on more of a spectrum rather than in strict categories. This idea is described a bit more here: https://esukhia.online/A0/A0-AP2-Design-principles.html (scroll down to 2a, “Verbs in Tibetan”).

In your example, the speaker is using ཡོད་རེད་ rather than རེད་. The sentence can work with either verb, but when describing another person (your friend, a family member, etc.), it is common to use ཡོད་རེད་ b/c it is general information you have access to, but doesn’t rise to the standard of being super-continuous common knowledge རེད་.

Your guess is good, b/c sometimes the reason is that it’s not ‘continuous’ enough. But here, there’s no implication that they aren’t actually kind hearted, or that they’re pretending to be. It just means they have a friend who’s kind-hearted.

Because the verbal system is ‘evidential’, it won’t map 1:1 to other languages :wink: From my experience, it’s sometimes hard to know which situations call for which verb. It just takes a lot of time and practice!

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That’s very helpful! Thanks Dirk!
Patience and effort and we get there!

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