Thursday, July 19, 2012

A Friendly World

This is the kind of culture which existed in many cultures for much of human history. In traditional society nearly every place, nearly every part of the world, contained an intense field of centers. Nearly every doorknob, handrail, window, chair, step, room, street, building, roof, bush, tree bole, walkway, doorpost, and doorway could be experienced as a picture of the human self. Wherever you went in such a world, wherever you looked, at every scale, you recognized yourself, you saw things as familiar and felt related to them. This world was friendly. Though often frightening in its physical dangers, every part of it was animated, like a human face. I can identify with each part of it. Even though many of them were made by people remote from me in time and place and civilization, still, the remarkable thing is that I see my face in each of them. Each of them deeply resembles me. - Christopher Alexander, The Luminous Ground, page 60
Hammerfest, Northern Norway

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