The Luminous Ground: An Essay on the Art of Building and the Nature of the Universe

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Center for Environmental Structure, 2004 - Architecture - 356 pages
3 Reviews
The foundations of modern scientific thought, four centuries old, are firmly rooted in a conception that the universe is a machinelike entity, a play of baubles, -machines, trinkets. Quantum mechanics and biology have begun to change this way of thinking, but even to this day, our real daily experience of ourselves as we actually are, has no clear place in science. No wonder that a machinelike world-view has supported the deadly architecture of the last century. Alexander breaks away completely from the one-sided mechanical model; he shows us conclusively that the emergence of every act from a larger wholeness must change our understanding completely, and leads inevitably to the fact that a spiritual, emotional, and personal basis must underlie every act of building. In the middle of the book comes the linchpin of the work; an 86-page chapter on color, which lavishly illustrates and dramatically conveys the way that consciousness and spirit make their appearance in the world. Throughout this fourth and final book, is a new cosmology uniting matter and consciousness; self inextricably joined to the substrate of matter, present in all matter, and providing wholeness with its underpinnings. The book provides a path for those contemporary scientists who are beginning to see consciousness as the underpinning of matter, and thus as a proper object of scientific study. It will change, forever, our conception of what buildings are.

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About the author (2004)

Christopher Alexander is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, architecture, builder and author of many books and technical papers. He is the winner of the first medal for research ever awarded by the American Institute of Architects, and after 40 years of teaching is professor Emeritus and the University of California, Berkeley.

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