Six Words of Advice by Tilopa:
This advice consists of only six words in Tibetan. The above translation was developed to capture its brevity and directness. Some years ago, I also developed the translation shown below, which some people prefer:
Let go of what has passed.
Let go of what may come.
Let go of what is happening now.
Don’t try to figure anything out.
Don’t try to make anything happen.
Relax, right now, and rest.
Tilopa (Prakrit; Sanskrit: Talika or Tilopada) (988–1069) was born in either Chativavo (Chittagong), Bengal or Jagora, Bengal. He was a tantric practitioner and mahasiddha. He developed the mahamudra (Tibetan: phyag rgya chen po) method, a set of spiritual practices that greatly accelerates the process of attaining bodhi (enlightenment). He is regarded as the human founder of the Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism.
One of the most famous and important statements attributed to Tilopa is: “The problem is not enjoyment; the problem is attachment.”