Below is a collection of various comments that I have received.
Collectively, they form the basis of a worldview which is totally antagonistic to even the mere suggestion that wholeness has anything to do with architecture:
When I first thought about writing something to published on the Internet, across the "social media" landscape, I had anticipated some blowback. I had read and heard stories about how pernicious and childish people could be. I had seen the consequences of putting your identity out there. Creating, indirectly, a forum for others to tell you how bad your thoughts are, how pointless your endeavors, how meaningless your voice. Nevertheless, I went on because I had a purpose that I believed in and thought was important to carry out. And so, I tried to branch out on a variety of websites in order to simply express my thoughts. I didn't have high hopes or expectations.
It is remarkable to see, that on this website, which supposedly is about making architecture "more connected and open-minded", that so many individuals - architects, teachers, professionals, and many others - choose to present themselves to the world in such a cruel fashion.
Certainly, not everyone does this.
But the few who do go to elaborate lengths. It seems they have substituted a therapist for me. They found a subject on which to completely unload their suppressed vitriol. They act as if I had summoned Hades himself to unlock the gates of the Underworld. I knew there was a price to pay for speaking up, for simply laying out my thoughts. I didn't think it would become this ugly so quickly.
It is interesting to note a few choice words in the comments above: moralize, fairy tales, rebel, pseudo-belief, impersonal. It is fascinating to hear these used to describe a worldview which is essentially talking about a common sense way of building. Making decisions as one goes along, adapting them to the situation, gradually going from small to large and large to small, all while keeping the whole thing in direct view. The process of wholeness could not be simpler. It could not have anything less to do with fairy tales. And yet people still feel compelled to make cruel responses not towards me, but towards the mere suggestion of bringing this up. The mere idea some person would try to investigate this (a waste of time in their view) is abominable. Trust me, I've heard it all before.
How is it that investigating wholeness in this way, in a public forum, turn into a hostile act? Perhaps I should have insulted the President of the AIA in order to get people really going.
The fact is that I don't really need to moralize. Even if I did, it certainly wouldn't matter.
What does matter is this: these kinds of descriptions regarding wholeness is indicative of the presence of a deep-seated reaction against taking seriously the proposition that contemporary building practices are damaging to the Earth. Design has gone off the rails. But everyone pretends that everything is somehow okay. And, to defend this, there is a plethora of literature out there that will support this view because anytime someone questions a power system, the system's defenders strike back.
In a more whole and living world, this is not what happens. What happens is that people are truly free, not just in some abstract legal sense, but it a very authentic way. Why? Because the built environment is made in such a way that makes them feel connected to it as if they themselves own it. Furthermore, this feeling is shared. It is a philosophy of community, not selfishness. This is a dangerous road to tread for professionals and students because it makes them feel as if they can't explore their creativity in practice or in school. Of course they can. They are simply responsible, however, for making buildings that actually improve the quality of life rather than detract from it.
Until people are willing to embrace the prospect of wholeness as being a serious subject of inquiry, this kind of mechanistic language will proceed without end. Now that I know how deep the mechanistic worldview goes, I am more resolved than ever to shed light on the current state of architecture.
Below is an image of real freedom and real wholeness that was rendered possible, in part, by the architecture.
Image Credit: http://cityphile.com/photo/nyhavn/ | Photo by Will Sherman
This document is a collection of thoughts, ideas, sketches, and observations of a young architecture student living in the 21st century. It is intended to serve as a resource and vehicle for personal connections that extend beyond virtual domains. The main subject of this blog is an inquiry into the elusive nature of wholeness. The purpose is to identify wholeness-making building methodologies and examples of 'whole architecture' throughout history.