On careful construction
Being an engineer interested in best practices, I know a fair bit about LEED certification. LEED, shorthand for “Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design”, will certify buildings as Silver, Gold or Platinum dependent on how well a building’s design adheres to the best practices to conserve energy.
The thing about a LEED rating is that, as a design award, it focuses on appropriate construction. Building mismanagement by tenants can greatly increase the energy used in a building, making even LEED certified buildings unsustainable. A recent Op-Ed piece in the NY Times calls for increased enforcement of buildings in use, with a consequence that a building might lose its certifications if continually mismanaged.
It is interesting to think that as designed, the building should be able to perform in particular ways. Design standards focus on intention. To some degree they can be enforced during actual construction. But after the building is constructed, the design standards offer suggestions about how the building can be (and even should be) used only with the power of suggestion.
And so it is with us. We are carefully constructed to the point of being “fearfully and wonderfully made” with our human blueprint being in “the image and likeness of God.” We never lose our design features, even if we horribly disfigure them through mismanagement. Yet, we have a call to live as we were intended to live, something that can only be accomplished with close consultation with the Architect.