Towards full knowledge of the self which can arise in us

Gradually, as this greater and greater experience of true feeling occurs in a person, as true feeling therefore grows more and more clear within you, you are learning something about yourself. The feelings which grow are not manufactured. The Alcove pattern does not implant something extraneous and foreign in a human being, What is released is something that is there already.

So, what happens is that you, in this state, experience more and more truly the feeling of being free. At first this freedom is a kind of emotional freedom — you experience that you are vulnerable. You experience the vector towards the I. You experience art, grass, leaves, and sky as connected, and yourself as part of it. Your feeling of emotion, happiness, and sadness gradually gives way to a greater and more general feeling — the feeling of connectedness towards the I, that you are a part of the great I along with the grass and the sky.

And here the process comes full circle. Because of course it is this general feeling of connectedness which is needed to recognize life, to evaluate wholeness, to know in what degree the life or wholeness in a thing is working.

But there is also something further. The patterns, the inner knowledge of forms and conditions which create a living world, are not only a useful and important practical necessity for the growth of a healthy person. It is also part of your own inner landscape. Alcoves (of course this example is only one drop in a large ocean) and all the other structures contained in living structure are part of your inner landscape. They are part of you. As you become more aware of these things, as the kind of morphological structure of a living world makes itself felt and becomes part of your conscious awareness, then you are in touch with this inner landscape. You become a more rounded, more satisfied, more satisfactory being.

And, of course, being in touch with that landscape, is, in some sense, being in touch with the I. So this inner landscape is a part of you which places you more permanently, more readily, in touch with the “All that is”.

The patterns in A Pattern Language, and the fifteen properties in The Phenomenon of Life, help to create a mental state in which you are allowed to experience and develop your most vulnerable personal nature. The properties open the door to feelings which you have, but which are suppressed. Thus, although the mechanical application of the fifteen properties is not very desirable, even that mechanical process has some positive role.

The more you use the properties, the more you find out that they create structures which correspond to your feeling. And this gives you permission, more and more, to liberate your feeling, to rely on it.

(Pages 267-268)

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