What are you doing?

//What are you doing?

What are you doing?

Much of my time these days has been spent in the so-called workaday world, just like everyone else. I’ve been realizing that being at the office doesn’t bother me as much as I think it would, even if I would often prefer to be doing something else.
Today I was particularly struck by the negativity, the pent-up anger and resentment, of many colleagues. Some people indulge to a great extent in these emotions, fueling anger with anger, resentment with resentment, bitterness with bitterness. Some bad-mouth colleagues, bosses, neighbors, groups of foreigners… Others, meanwhile, tend to function in a perpetual attitude of irony and cynicism.
It makes you dizzy sometimes. How to act/react in such an environment?
I am aware of the temptation to join in the harmful banter. I make an effort not to do so when I feel myself drawn in. Then I just listen. I remind myself of the origins of these sufferings – the pain of not being seen and not seeing – which I recognize from my own experience.
I come across this quote from Bernie Glassman: “Never feel guilty for what you are not doing; there’s a helluva lot you’re not doing. It’s like going into a garden and blaming a sunflower for not being a rose. Praise and love yourself for what you are doing, even if it’s sweeping the streets.”
This is what’s called peacemaking, with oneself and with others.

By | 2015-10-02T15:52:00+01:00 novembre 30th, 2011|Textes|7 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. little white cloud 8 décembre 2011 at 9 h 30 min - Reply

    when we can be there – doing what we are doing completely – no matter what – just as we are – no gap between ourselves and our selves
    All is in it –

  2. little white cloud 8 décembre 2011 at 9 h 24 min - Reply

    “ Vous n’ arrivez au géneral ,
    qu’ a travers le plus particulier possible. “
    Alberto Giacometti

  3. litlle lake 7 décembre 2011 at 19 h 43 min - Reply

    thanks senei – could use this one.
    guilt is such a hughe one

  4. Christine 4 décembre 2011 at 14 h 47 min - Reply

    I was at the movies yesterday (first time since a long, long time) and for all those living in France: go and watch "Intouchables", story about a Bodhisattva with a great sense of humour. I promise you will have a good laugh and step out of the cinema with a big smile on your face. For all the others: watch out if some day it will be shown in your country…

  5. Tu es cela 3 décembre 2011 at 19 h 48 min - Reply

    Greetings, Hugo.
    Thanks for your note. I could swear it’s Laos here at my desk as I read you, between typing these words, relaxed evening, many sights and sounds, glow of the City of Light’s lights, mild December chill easing us into winter.

  6. Hugo 3 décembre 2011 at 15 h 23 min - Reply

    just to say hello from a internet coffee in vientiane, lao. relaxed evening in a small street with many french restaurants and asian food wonders. so many smells and sounds. just listening and smelling. in between typing these words

  7. alguem 30 novembre 2011 at 23 h 02 min - Reply


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