Thursday, July 28, 2005

My Brahmasthan is more Vedic than yours

Another business trip, another chance to read magazines. This time, I find nothing at the newsstand and am forced to read the airline mag. What karmic coincidence! I end up reading an article on Vedic architecture, apparently the basis for Fung Shui, and now a pop architectural guide in its own right, 4,500 years after its invention.

Turns out, my house is, like, Vedically cool. Here are some of the key things I learned about Vedic architecture and how much my house rocks.

At its core, Vedic architecture proposes that the direction a building faces (east dissipates fear, disease, and poverty; west fosters health decline and loss of income),
[Our house faces East-ish. Cool...]

Vedic rules pinpoint living rooms in the central west portion of the house as more convivial
[... this is the family room...],

kitchens in the southeast corner for better digestibility
...OK, we miss completely on this one, maybe why we eat out so much...]

and master bedrooms in the southwest corner for being more conducive to rest.
[...let's see, yep, MBR in the SW, that's us too...]

Although linked more to spirituality than to religion, all Vedic homes also have a meditation room in the northeast corner to strengthen the effect of meditation or prayer.
[... Hah, that's the garage. Which, I guess when I eventually clean it up, I could turn into a meditation room...]

And they all contain a Brahmasthan, or a silent central core, which literally translates into "establish wholeness."
[...Wait, you mean like our atrium ...]

The latter is not at the home's entrance, as some might assume, but rather at its center, acting as the home's axis, to harmonize with the universal laws of nature.
[... Oh, you mean EXACTLY like our atrium...]

"If we look at the things nature established [explains Jonathan Lipman, AIA, chief architect of Maharishi Global Construction], from largest to smallest, they each have a central core, and all the activities move around it. For example, a galaxy has a black hole; a solar system has a sun; cells in the body have a nucleus. This is one way nature maintains coherence. And when we use those same principles in architecture, we experience greater coherence in our houses."

So, thank you Eichler, Jones, Emmons, modernism, and the 4,500 year old Sthapatya Veda text. I think I'm going to start referring to the atrium as my Brahmasthan....


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