‘To Seek Is To Suffer’

A wonderful excerpt from Bodhidharma, “Outline of Practice,” in The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma (trans. Red Pine), pp. 5-6:

Third, seeking nothing [Bodhidharma’s interpretation of the Third Noble Truth, or the cessation of all suffering–AT]. People of this world are deluded. They’re always longing for something–always, in a word, seeking. But the wise wake up. They choose reason over custom. They fix their minds on the sublime and let their bodies change with the seasons. All phenomena are empty. They contain nothing worth desiring. Calamity forever alternates with Prosperity. To dwell in the three realms is to dwell in a burning house. To have a body is to suffer. Does anyone with a body know peace? Those who understand this detach themselves from all that exists and stop imagining or seeking anything. The sutras say, “To seek is to suffer. To seek nothing is bliss.” When you seek nothing, you’re on the Path [or Tao–AT].