What will be has always been

Louis Kahn

We all are born with a sense of what to do. Within our singular limit we know instinctively, that given an opportunity to put the ideas into practice, we know what to do quite instantaneously, if what we do is true to our singularity. The title of the presentation is of a book written by Louis Kahn, where he begins to unfold the sense of singularity within ourselves but with a high degree of awareness of “what has always been”, that is the inherent quality of space, nature and living beings. We practice our singularity with our knowledge & awareness about “what has always been.” Sense of singularity is to be free from our own biases…that’s freedom.

We often struggle to connect one thing with another. The brain is a function of the body, the mind is a soul of thinking and Architecture must connect the function of the brain to the thinking of the mind, although finding a connection is often a difficult thing to do. We are being trained to be an architect, not just to obtain skills and learn techniques but to find the singularity of the self in locating inter-connectedness, just like light meets the dark, water meets the land, people meet the sacred. Nature is the giver of presence. You can visualize a building though the thought has no presence till you call on nature to exercise its powers of order, to make it manifest.

Architecture takes its own time to be responsive, it tells you vivid stories, engages with your sense of wonder, the moment is so irresistible when thought, memory and story meet simultaneously. The pyramids have a story to tell, we still go back to this piece of architecture with a great sense of wonder.

There is a difference between pleasure and joy. If pleasure is manifested in celebration, joy is the fine grain, celebrated with silence, deeply resolved and settled within ourselves. The Aura of architecture is that silence.

There are two realities, one that is belief and the other, the reality of means. Often the reality of means takes over the reality of belief, thus architecture ceases to exist, it is a mere presence of the building. The connecting two realities is a challenge, a struggle and often requires constant and persistent observation. The two realities bring immeasurable connection, joy, stoicism and serenity..

The lecture was a addressed to KRVIA First Year B.Arch Students, 2022 | Image Credit: Manoj Parmar Architects

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