I'm translating a Tibetan text written in verse into English. The style is one of direct advice rather than learned philosophy. My aim is for the translation to have the same down-to-earth quality as the original, and as much as possible to be accessible to anyone with a reasonable grasp of literary English.
In some (Tibetan) Buddhist literature in English, "heart advice" (or "heart-advice") has become somewhat common as a term for teachings that focus on the core practises of Buddhism, with little embellishment.
My question is whether this expression is jarring or distracting or even seems outright erroneous to a native English speaker who happens not to have been exposed to modern Buddhist literature. (I am not a native speaker myself.)
There is a recurring phrase in the text: "...this is my heart advice." To anyone who knows the meaning of "direct, unembellished, rare, crucial teaching", this sounds quite beautiful, but I'm wondering if, for an average reader, "my heart's advice" would actually sound better?
The Tibetan word is snying gtam, snying meaning "heart" and gtam meaning "advice, talk, discourse" etc.
More than expressing sincerity of purpose on the part of the one giving the advice, snying gtam expresses the qualites of the advice itself: pithy, essential, unadorned.