Zen Spot #16 — Mindfulness, meditation and life below the ghosts of locomotives February 8, 2018 00:05

A belly full of tourists, cops, commuters and fish mongers

The Reading Terminal Market is an amazingly diverse marketplace full of produce vendors, sandwich makers, salad shooters, jewelry purveyors, fish mongers and more. It bustles with abandon. Neon signs rub shoulders with the simplest Mennonite lunch stand. Craft beer is sold next to handmade crafts. People yell and smell and tell stories.

At the center of the market, in the parted sea between purveyors, sits perhaps one-hundred aluminum tables, organized to create a small, comfortable, useful community. At lunchtime, the village is welcoming,  loud and fun. Unknown neighbors share time and space, elbow to elbow, nourishing the spirit.

The Market is one of the few destinations in any city where visitors and locals truly intermingle. Alive and well, it resides about fifty feet below what once was the final stop on the Reading Railroad. Dozens of locomotives, weighing dozens of tons, for dozens of years, would arrive and depart directly above thousands of daily lunchgoers.

I love The Market. It is mine. It is yours. It is ours. No matter from where on the planet you hail, you are an owner when you walk through the doors.

Singing bowls and aluminum bells

The chairs and tables are easily rearranged to configure as needed; patrons bang them together and shuffle them so randomly and loudly that one can almost hear a rhythm and a melody at the same time--an audio fractal, perhaps. Find the deafening roar of a single voice comprised of thousands of voices. Too, experience the kind of quiet that eventually allows one to hear a pin drop, as the afternoon progresses.

Visit at noon. Visit at 5 pm. Choose the quiet within which you are most comfortably mindful.

>

About DharmaMechanic

An artist, entrepreneur and writer walking the Buddhist path, his art focuses on the Dharma Wheel. The four wheels shown above are among over 600 DharmaMechanic has created over the course of his career. Each has a unique story. If you’d like to read the story of these wheels or purchase a framed 20" x 20" ready-to-hang print, visit SilkDharma.com.

What are The Four Noble Truths?

  1. The truth of suffering
  2. The truth of the origin of suffering
  3. The truth of the cessation of suffering
  4. The truth of the path to the cessation of suffering

What is The Noble Eightfold Path?

  1. Right view
  2. Right intention
  3. Right action
  4. Right speech
  5. Right livelihood
  6. Right effort
  7. Right mindfulness
  8. Right concentration

What is a Dharma Wheel?