All of us have the basic right to live in a clean, well-lighted place. Of course we do. Nonetheless, I’ve noted with dismay the proliferation of multistory developments sprouting up like mushrooms at the western end of Goleta.
In established areas of downtown Santa Barbara, the popular term is “infill,” as if an open space is merely a slot into which a wealthy developer has the right to insert overly dense housing that irrevocably changes the charming ambience of the smaller, older properties.
From my perspective, these developers are a scourge. But to the lucky few who win lotteries for the privilege of dwelling in those practical but plain housing units, they are a godsend.
My train of thought runs into the wall of our golden 5D future. Imagination fails, trying to envision how all of humanity can be beautifully housed in desirable, already crowded locales.
According to Matthew Ward (and many others), all currently inhospitable areas of Earth will return to beautiful, desirable, clement status. Even the deserts will become abundantly livable.
There should be no shortage of desirable places to live. What I wonder is, how will the “desirable” places that have, in my view, been scarred by overbuilding ever be returned to a semblance of the beauty that they were?
It seems an exercise in futility to ruminate on the housing of our future world. The broken-down inner cities and the ancient slums that comprise many square miles of the world‘s metropolises can hardly vanish overnight and be replaced with gently rolling hills and meadows with babbling, clear-water brooks.
Or can they?
And if that did happen, where would the displaced slum inhabitants go?
A few pristine cabins scattered amongst the meadows and brooks would hardly hold the millions currently housed in less-than-ideal conditions.
I have no idea what the answer might be. Perhaps some visionary architects and designers are already working on solutions.
Perhaps secret drawing boards are pinned with fantastic designs of cities in the clouds. Humans inhabit light-filled dwellings to which we transport ourselves with a thought, hovering over the rolling prairie or the sharply scented pine forests we wander through at will, communing with the animals of Earth who have chosen to remain in their habitats.
In that future idyllic setting, everyone lives in a clean and comfortable and desirable place of their choosing. People cohabit peacefully and companionably because that is our natural state of being.
Since our thoughts, we are told, create our world, perhaps it’s not so useless to speculate. Perhaps my daydreams will reach out along the energetic pathways of comprehension and imagination that I feel sure invisibly interlace the very air we breathe.
Some designer or architect will feel an ethereal nudge and go to their drawing board, or stare out a high-rise window, visions of housing joy filling the inner landscape of their eyes.
In the not-too-distant future, real humans could benefit from those visions and real lives could be made lightyears better through what we envision here and now.
That is a golden age I am happy to help create in whatever way I can. Even if it’s only through daydreams, imagination, and belief.