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  • Writer's pictureCarsten Sprotte

A House to Herald Change

Updated: Aug 12, 2022

Photo by Pablo Orcaray on Upsplash - Maspalomas Lighthouse, Maspalomas, Spain

This is a house that wants to change you.

This is a house that wants to change the world, for it is by changing yourself that the world will change. To make such a claim, you might expect the house to dazzle you. Instead, like an ordinary onion, it may intrigue you, layer after layer.

Have you ever been in a haunted house? Most likely, you don’t believe they exist, yet you are likely to live in one. I’m not talking about ghosts, but rather about how a deleterious past remains materially present in your habitation against your will. It permeates your walls. Chances are you live in a house built according to a large number of economic and regulatory constraints that still go unquestioned. Most likely there are many rooms with four walls converging toward a ceiling of standard height.

Do you know about all of the substances present in your house? Do you know from where its materials were sourced? Do you know which human hands built it? Are you aware of its true cost? Are you aware of all the effects of building millions of homes similar to your own? What will become of them at the end of their useful life?

All of this remains in the shadows, like so many malevolent spirits you would prefer to ignore. Nor can anyone come to cast them out. So, you are somewhat stuck with the haunts in your house. There are tweaks you can make to cast more light, but in such houses there will always remain dim corners.

These are things to which you may have paid no attention. It may not have occurred to you to what extent a house can affect your well-being, nor how billions of houses also affect the well-being of your fellow humans, nor how those billions of houses affect all of life on earth. Americans, to name just a few, have accelerated their pursuit of happiness over the past sixty years, building hundreds of millions of houses. Larger on average than other houses in the world, these have not (insofar as it can be measured) increased net happiness nor well-being in proportion to their XL size, whereas they have in a very measurable way destroyed ecosystems and degraded our health and our environment.

Of the numerous consumer choices we make that serve either to perpetuate or to change the way we live on this earth, our choice of housing is perhaps the most significant and enduring. That is a good enough reason in itself to shed more light on the matter. It is also the genesis of the Light House.

There is a period historians refer to as the Dark Ages, in contrast to the splendor of the Roman Empire that preceded them. A new age eventually emerged that would be called the Enlightenment. Its virtue was to restore Reason and liberate man from the bondage of ignorance and superstition. How will humans of the future refer to our current age, where so much available knowledge and so much willful ignorance co-exist? Will they call it the Great Illusion? Or the Coming of Age? Or the New Bondage? What age will dawn beyond ours?

Yes, the Light House wants to change you, and in doing so change the world, imperceptibly at first, then on a visible scale. Let it become like a lighthouse, lighting a path for change.

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