Zen Spot #10 — Mindfulness, meditation and The Noble Eightfold Path reborn every morning December 5, 2017 22:50

That idea

I read an author who that asserts that we are each reborn every time we awaken — that this life ends when we close our eyes and the next life begins when the morning arrives. Direct and simple, the idea makes complete sense to me because, at the very least, it eliminates dogma, and does so with respect.

That next life

There is a sense of awe and wonder that washes over me when there is a eventful difference between each day and, if the idea described above applies, between each lifetime. Most differences, however, are unnoticeable--yet we move from life to life.

That spot

Every day, I drive by a building that has been undergoing a restoration for a very long time. The building’s five stories occupy an entire North Philadelphia city block and were probably finished in the 1920s to house a factory. Surprisingly, however, I can’t remember the last time a construction crew was on-site. 

The perimeter is lined with temporary chain-link fence upheld by three-inch stainless steel conduit impaled into crumbling cinder blocks. Where a sidewalk would normally reside, an overgrowth of bloom and weeds spawns from between the concrete sidewalk slabs. Where the masonry of the side of the building meets each slab, vines crawl and spew. Pavement destroyed by time and the elements has been piled into rubble. Dirt and shale sit in broken mounds. 

The image above is painted on the back wall of an alcove on the first floor of the south side of the building. Sitting about six feet off the ground, and thirty feet out of reach from the top of the chain-link fence, the alcove invites visitors. A traffic light stands close enough to cast multiple nighttime colors on the back wall.

That image

Yesterday, I drove by and the image above appeared in the distance. Visible from three hundred meters away, the details weren’t obvious, but it was clear the building was different — noticeably and powerfully— than it was just 24 hours earlier.

The previous night, a ghost climbed the fence, scaled the alcove and took the time to paint a safe, nurturing angel. Oddly, there was no evidence of a human having been present. Most notably, there were no trampled weeds or footprints left in the dirt or overgrowth. It appeared that the artist floated over the fence and onto the alcove without ever touching the ground.

In the life that was yesterday.


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?