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Time for a greener architecture

  • Posted on August 28, 2017 at 11:11 pm

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The Gestalt school identified several principles of use to artists and architects, but the most important is that of balance – that is, the constantly shifting balance that balances all opposites within the constantly shifting matrix of reality. Interestingly the principles of form found in the natural world are not dissimilar to the Gestalt principles that also operate in the unselfconscious human building traditions I referred to at the beginning of this article. Vernacular building traditions have evolved slowly over long periods of time and thus possess some of the coherent organic order found also in Nature. As in animal architecture, vernacular architecture possesses an inherent beauty: the beauty of integrity and unity. Such beauty emerges from the totally balanced integration of a system, its function and use into the broader realms of Nature.

So have we stumbled onto the reason why so many modern human-made environments fail to come up to the quality of some older towns and cities? At root the problem seems to lie in the spiritual posture that we adopt with Nature. Many people would now accept that as humans we are completely co-terminal with Nature. However, in claiming ownership, as we do, of that part of Nature that we call -self’, we not only separate ourselves from Nature but also separate ourselves from our own environments. Yogis tell us that the transcendental world of the spirit – the world of unity and pure consciousness – supports the relative world at each point. They tell us that the transcendental realm is a world without qualities yet gives rise to and sustains all qualities. They tell us that it is to be found in the -gap’ between the different states of consciousness: waking, dreaming and sleep; in the silences in music; between syllables in spoken language and even between our thoughts. The great 19th-century Indian holy man Ramakrishna Paramahansa was once asked, -Where do I find God?- His reply was, -Look between two thoughts.- This gap between perfectly balanced opposites is where life and spirit enter the relative world. It is also the vital middle ground between a subject and an object that defines the -mean’ and gives the meaning.

In conclusion we can say that it is order that gives life to a work and it is order that gives a work its spiritual dimension. It is in the perfect orderliness of a great work that the two worlds of materiality and spirit conjoin. Order is the agent that serves as the conduit between these two realms. Dare we say that -orderliness’ is next to -Godliness’?

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Advantages And Disadvantages Of Having An Outdoor Wedding

  • Posted on August 28, 2017 at 4:44 pm

You and your fiance are different and both of you are contemplating an outdoor wedding against a more conventional church wedding! An outdoor wedding holds manifold advantages, especially so for those feeling claustrophobic by church weddings. However, there are certain disadvantages with outdoor weddings as well. Let us consider the pros and cons of outdoor weddings to help finalize any of your decisions in this regard.

Advantages of an Outdoor Wedding:

Church weddings invariably pose restrictions on the themes that can be used for the weddings. With a church wedding, one needs to primarily stick to more conservative themes that are traditional and time honoured. With an outdoor wedding you have a lot more freedom and you can pretty much call all the shots with regard to the themes you would want to have for the wedding. The sky is the limit when it comes to choosing the themes – it can be a beach theme or a western theme or anything else that catches your fancy.

The cost is a great advantage when it comes to outdoor weddings as they are definitely much less costly than what you would incur with a church service. You don’t have to pay for using a public garden or a beach to get married, and the only costs in this regard will be what you need provide to the minister. And this goes with a host of conveniences like discarding formal attire and going with a simple sundress (if you prefer) when getting married in a sunny beach or a warm garden.

Another advantage with outdoor weddings is that you and your guests will feel much more relaxed and comfortable in the casual environment as against a stuffy church environment. Having lots of movement space is also welcome as people don’t have to jostle like in a church.

With outdoor weddings, the same venue can be used for wedding and reception; you just need to find someone for decoration and catering.

Disadvantages of an Outdoor Wedding:

The unpredictable weather can play a big havoc with your wedding. Mother Nature is not under our control and the weather man can be wrong. Moreover, the unpredictable nature of the weather makes it difficult to plan outdoor weddings ahead of time. It can be pouring on the day of your wedding and so it would be a good idea to have a back-up plan when you are contemplating an outdoor wedding.

Also most Catholic priests don’t allow you to marry outside of the church. So, you need to convince your priest first if you really want to go ahead with an outdoor wedding.

To summarize, outdoor weddings work for some people and not for others. So, plan carefully taking into account all pros and cons and figure out what will work best for you.