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Biologic Architecture Buildings Inspired by Nature  

2010-03-29 00:41:46|  分类: 英文起步 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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from Natural Life Magazine, January/February 2010
Biologic Architecture
Buildings Inspired by Nature
by Michael Rice

clip_image001[4]Over the millennia(千年), there have been countless design and building styles from simple earth huts(小屋) to classic timber(木料) cabins to modern, so-called “intelligent” structures. No doubt, there will be many more as our technology continues to provide a platform for our apparently insatiable(无法满足的) and, indeed, appropriate(恰当的) desire to express and create. We are in a constant dance with the elements of our environment and, as we transform it, it transforms us. What we construct and inhabit literally informs not only our biology(生理) but our psychology(心理) and our resulting behavior. We experience an alliterative continuum of building, biology and biography(传记). The much used expression “You are what you eat” poetically encapsulates(概括) the reality that what we consume and how we consume it forms the basis of our physical, mental and emotional makeup. The same is true with how and where we live.

In recent years, there has been a growing awareness of an increasingly prevalent(流行的) health condition known as Sick Building Syndrome (SBS). It manifests(表明) in many ways depending on the individual and the specifics of their environment, but symptoms include lack of energy, headaches, irritable(易怒) bowel(肠), skin irritation, nausea(恶心), insomnia(失眠), restlessness and many other debilitating(虚弱) physical and psychological reactions. Being in “sick buildings” leads to a literal breakdown in the integrity(完善) of the immune(免疫) system of the occupants(居住者), which in turn affects every other aspect of their lives. There is a plethora(过量) of conflicting conclusions and beliefs as to what may be causing this, ranging from chemical off-gassing, poor air quality, lack of adequate(充足的) ventilation(通风), negative(消极) effects of some human-made electro-magnetic fields to the adverse(逆的,不利的) influence of just plain bad design.

Most of us have spent some time in buildings that may feel as if they are, indeed, sick and we may have felt a deep survival- based desire to escape the toxicity(毒性) of the environment. There is a literal stress on our bodies that when left unchecked can lead to disease or slow disintegration(崩溃) of biological function. It has been said that biology invented pain as a way to show us where to place our attention. I like this concept and it does, of course, make sense – when our finger touches something hot, a sensation of pain triggers an almost instantaneous(瞬间) physical response, which affects the rapid removal of the digit(手指) from danger. This is a simple and obvious example of the continuous biofeedback we engage in with our environments.

Our bodies wish to be healthy and vital(活力), representing a strong natural desire rooted in the genetic imperative(命令) to remain biologically viable(可实施). Each cell in our body is independently able to detect and respond appropriately(恰当地) to both positive and negative influences in our environments. In simple terms, a cell will move towards any source of food and energy, and away from any source of toxins(毒素) or danger. When all the cells in the multi-cellular(蜂窝状的) communities we call our bodies (approximately fifty to seventy trillion cells) get together, the effect is massively amplified(放大), resulting in a remarkable innate(天生的) ability to detect sources of energy and information that will support the community, as well as afford the awareness to detect toxins or danger. In effect, we have the skills in our bodies to know when a space is good or bad for us. However, sometimes the negative stresses we experience are more subtle(微妙) and less obvious to us, affecting us over time, making awareness and perception(察觉) less likely to kick in.

Modern society does not actively support or encourage the idea that we are completely energetically integrated with our built environments. It could be said that to do so would ultimately lead to its destruction, as people became more aware of the adverse effects and stresses bombarding(轰击) us everywhere we go. So, to some extent, there is an opportunity to take greater personal responsibility(责任) for our own education, our own health and our own built environments.

It is worth saying at this point that I know we are capable of so much beauty and life supporting expression. When we operate from a place of awareness, integrity and open creativity, we discover ways to manifest(表明) timelessly beautiful spaces that support our bodies, uplift our minds and nurture(培育) our spirit. Rather than focus on the many ways we do not do this, evidenced by the structures most of us live and work in, I concentrate on developing the awareness and the skill base necessary to design and build with more beauty in more sustainable equilibrium(平衡) with our environment. The information in this article is for everyone – not just architects – since we all play a part in the creation and maintenance(维持) of our built biology.

To paraphrase(意译) Albert Einstein: We cannot solve the problem with the same mind that created it. We could benefit from a new language, a new understanding and a new philosophy that is based as closely as possible on the pure principles of natural emergent(出现) living design. The opportunity now exists to really study and emulate(仿效) how Nature creates and expresses sustainably(持续), with ease and elegance.


Michael Rice is an award winning architect and member of the Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland. He studied at the School of Architecture in University College Dublin. He set up his own practice in 1998 based in the Slieve Bloom Mountains in the heart of Ireland, specializing in Sacred Design and Living. He is kept wonderfully busy designing beautiful homes all over the world. He teaches “Sacred Geometry and Coherent Emotion” internationally and has gained a reputation as a dynamic and playfully enthusiastic presenter. He has travelled extensively and studied Architecture/Natural Design, Martial Arts, Science and Philosophy for over 25 years, bringing this understanding and practical experience to both his design work and his teachings. He lives with Heather and five amazing home educated kids, currently in the midst of finishing their new home “Dreamfield,” photos of which accompany this article and appear on the cover of this issue of Natural Life Magazine.

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