This book attempts to put Zen into the realm of western thinking. It has the right stuff. Unfortunately, it is sometimes very difficult to read and comprehend. Perhaps it is the translation from French, but I found the phrasing, punctuation, and some of the vocabulary very cumbersome.
Take a look at the excerpts on this page to see a sample of the style. Nonetheless, this book is a must read for anyone seriously investigating What Is.
There are many diamonds here, but you will need a pick and shovel.
Zen is probably the most radical approach to existence devised through human history. Authentic Zen has nothing New Age or feel-good about it: it promises no comfort or self-aggrandizement, only absolute existential salvation, and THAT only have a laborious emptying out of the cup of ego that runneth over.
Most Zen masters refuse to discuss the discipline or explain it. Hubert Benoit takes the opposite, and for intellectually-inclined Westerners, the more accessible path, and discusses Zen in exhaustive detail in terms of psychology and philosophy--especially phenomenology and existentialism. I was skeptical of this approach until I actually read this book. Benoit writes at an extremely high level of abstraction (something quite alien to traditional Zen, which deals mainly in parables) but any experienced meditator will concur that practically every word Benoit writes rings with utter truth and fidelty to the workings of consciousness. He is clearly a man who has absorbed the Zen teachings and then examined the workings of his own mind with unfailing rigor and perceptiveness; he has taken those findings and translated them into language with a care and accuracy that nobody else, to my knowledge, has ever matched. The results are utterly profound.
Indispensable for anybody interested in Zen or the expansion of consciousness.