When is a door not a door? When it’s a window.
I have been redoing the hatch in my roof lately,resulting in large gaps and a feeling of vulnerability for the elements and the universe in general, curiously in quite a different way than leaving a window open does. This has a bit to do with a window being possible to close of course, but also that I’m increasingly aware of the lines and borders drawn between me and the rest of the world by wood and nails.
My house is not a heavy, dense thing made out of brick and glava and three layers of insulated smartglass wired to an app. When there’s a bit missing, it’s missing, any gap is an opening to the world.
In the western world, and in Norway in particular, we have become accustomed to a house being a microcosmos, a solid barrier between us and everything that might be out there, people, animals, rain, snow or wind. The houses here are regulated with thermostats to such a degree that it’s hardly necessary to open a window at all.
This has also made it possible for us to believe that we are indeed removed from the rest of the world, that we do not live on earth, we live in a house. thinking that what happens outside our walls matters little as long as we can close our door. We have stopped living in the world and started living in houses, and now the world is dying because we have used it all to build ludicrously large houses and spew the waste from the building and our living back out into nature. Humanity need to reconnect with its home. A house is a dwelling, not the world.
That, of course, doesn’t mean it can’t be comfortable, cared for, made beautiful and meaningful. But it’s still a place in the world, not outside it, as people here seem to believe.