“There’s No Place Like Home”
“Can we know who we are by looking at where we live?”
Clare Cooper Marcus
I would argue that the answer to Professor Marcus’s question is a resounding “yes!” We choose our homes, just as we choose our clothes, in an effort to match our exteriors to an internal self-image. We all carry a vision of our ideal selves in our ideal surroundings, and spend a great deal of effort and resources to make that vision a reality. Imagine if you could have any home you wanted. If money was no object. What would it look like? How would it feel? Many people are never lucky enough to find that special place where they feel at ‘home’ – at rest. For others, we are blessed to find the home where we belong. It welcomes
us to come in and breathe. It just feels ‘right’, because it expresses our truest selves. That is the essence of ‘home’. It is a place of both physical residence and also spiritual refuge. My son knew this old house was his special place immediately. He felt at ‘home’ here, as do I.
In his famous work, Memories, Dreams, Reflections, Carl Jung describes the gradual evolution of his home on Lake Zurich. Jung spent more than thirty years working on his house and believed that building a house was a symbol of building a self. He saw it as an act of spiritual growth, and placed a plaque near his front door which read, “Vocatus Atque Non Vocatus Deus Aderit”, or “Bidden or Not Bidden, God is Present.” I believe that God is present, not in the building of a house, but in the making of a “Home.” And, that is the work we are undertaking in our old house.