The finest place

//The finest place

The finest place

Afternoon is in its final retreat. Evening is enveloping the city.
Today I went out for an appointment, ran errands, then returned. Soon, after cooking, I’ll be leaving again.
The best place is always where I am, nothing finer.

A traditional Zen story:
Crossing a marketplace, Banzan overheard a conversation between a butcher and his client:
« Give me the best piece of meat that you have, » the client said.
« Everything in my shop is of the finest quality, » replied the butcher, « you cannot find a piece of meat that is the best. »
At these words, Banzan was awakened.

By | 2017-04-04T06:58:22+01:00 octobre 20th, 2008|Textes|9 Comments

About the Author:

Enseignante Zen et poète, Sensei Amy “Tu es cela” Hollowell est née et a grandi à Minneapolis, aux Etats-Unis. Arrivée en France en 1981 pour étudier la littérature et l’histoire, elle y est restée, s’installant à Paris, où elle élève ses deux enfants et gagne sa vie en tant que journaliste. The Zen teacher and poet Amy “Tu es cela” Hollowell Sensei was born and raised in Minneapolis, but came to France in 1981 to study literature and history and has lived in Paris ever since, raising her two children and making a living as a journalist.


  1. Ting 27 octobre 2008 at 5 h 42 min - Reply

    It seems to me the brain is in charge.
    I can not put myself to sleep. I can only lie down and close my eyes and wait for the brain to knock me out. Even more important is I can not wake myself up. The brain will have to do that. I can only hope to outsmart the brain by setting an alarm clock.

    Meditating – I suppose – is a way of manipulating the brain.

    When we under stimulate the brain it will open up, when we over stimulate the brain it will close.

    Seems complicated.
    Conscious activity is trying to manage the way the brain is managing conscious activity.

  2. little lake 24 octobre 2008 at 23 h 58 min - Reply

    It may sound stupid but for ex. to me being/opening seems easier in summer than in winter???
    Easier in the silence of nature – than in the stressy energy of the city????

  3. little lake 24 octobre 2008 at 23 h 23 min - Reply

    The question : maybe there is allways first a fysical reaction – made solid by later mental judgement?

  4. little lake 24 octobre 2008 at 17 h 40 min - Reply

    In the proces of opening up to things – i just ask myself if / and how many times – we close ourself by body-instinct for what there is – introduced by fysical factors ?
    And how this can easily be the introduction to making things solid mentaly to?
    Thats all.

  5. Ting 23 octobre 2008 at 7 h 20 min - Reply

    Lake, I try to see the point o f your questions, but can’t really find it.

    How the brain works is subject to science. I’m not a neuroscientist and I suspect Tu isn’t one either.
    What I think I understand is that parts of the brain make decisions without involving other parts of the brain that are connected to (produce?) consciousness. Or these latter parts are activated shortly after the order is given to the body parts.
    So if I burn my hand, these parts of the brain see to it that this hand gets the hell out of the flame, before this consciousness can get philosophical about non-duality or about the emptiness of the flame. Ha-ha.

    Is that what you are pointing at?

  6. little lake 23 octobre 2008 at 0 h 39 min - Reply

    The example of the beat in the face is not so good – becous there is an other person involved. And nearly almost always projection and identification on storylevel.

    When the wind blows sand in your eyes, you imediatly close your eyes becous your body is fysicaly stressed.
    The mental judging is only later.
    I ask myself in how many cases there is a fysical reaction before the mental judgement? – even in mental reactions???
    Or am I wrong?
    and who can differentiate this althe time?

    something else:
    the noise in the metro.
    Most of the time our consciousness is pritty goal-directed – becous we literaly have a goal , we want/ are up to something.
    But in ex the noise of the metro, the question is if we not focus on something and put the noise on the background just to protect our nervesystem from a burnout.
    From the moment we create foreground and background our field of awarenes is directed towards foreground. (becous of fysical selfprotection of fysical factors????)
    and we are kind of disconected of everything as a whole?
    and from there it is a little step to make tings solid in a mental way?

    you know more about this?

  7. little lake 21 octobre 2008 at 23 h 06 min - Reply

    my ears hear the noise – my body feels the stress.

    ( when i draw : my eyes see – and my hand draws) ( in the best case)

    Scientific research – concludes – that plants grow better in an environment of good classical music.
    They grow less etc. in an environment with a lot loud of noise.
    Who hears the noise? who feels the stress?
    The rose does not know why – she blooms becous she blooms ( Angelus Silesius)

    I don’t know…

    it is not the same as Pessoa saying beauty is something we say about things for the …. they give us.
    He is talking about a mental judgement.
    this is a direct reaction of thebody itself???

    when someone beats you in the face
    your body will react by instinct
    this is not a mental judgement

    although Jesus said : turn your other cheek…

  8. tu es cela 21 octobre 2008 at 21 h 58 min - Reply

    who hears the noise? who feels the stress?

  9. little lake 20 octobre 2008 at 23 h 50 min - Reply

    That which is before you is it, in all its fullness, utterly complete.
    Huang Po

    What about the loud noise impossible to avoid – stressing your body directly?
    Even if there is no judgement about it by ego – just fysical stress;
    just awareness of noise? of fysical stress?

Leave A Comment