Architecture is a living symbol

Building a World that Reflects Our Aspirations: The Importance of Architecture in Self-Realization

Architecture is a living symbol. A symbol built from the memory of the ancestral cave we come from, and the fractal edifice we aspire to. In the interspace of history and the future, memory and anticipation, reality and fantasy, the architectural symbol is the imago of the process ego that strives for the absolute. In this sense, architecture can be seen as a manifestation of the “eternal return,” the idea that history repeats itself and that the present is always connected to the past (Nietzsche).

Architecture is an extension of the image of man, ergo an extension of the image of life. Architecture is not just a physical structure, but a reflection of the present and a manifestation of historical knowledge. It has the power to create harmony between the past and present and to serve as a place where one can recognize themselves.

Ideal, as an image, is a formative tool, not an instance on the path of individuation. Architecture mediates between opposing extremes by negotiating the tension between practical needs and guiding ideals. It connects the physical and spiritual, the material and intangible, functioning as a form of “dialectical synthesis,” reconciling opposing forces and resolving contradictions (Hegel). The architect Louis Kahn famously said, “A great building must begin with the unmeasurable, must go through measurable means when it is designed and in the end must be unmeasurable”

In conclusion, architecture describes and defines the world in which we live, by creating physical manifestos of our ideals and dreams. It allows us to build a world reflecting who we are and what we aspire to be. As a mirror of “self-realization”, it is a vital part of the individuation process, helping us define and express our unique identities and values. Jean-Paul Sartre observed, “Man is nothing else but that which he makes of himself”

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