Sacred Garden Design
A sacred or spiritual garden is an outdoor space(s) where one can retreat from the artificial world, relax and reawaken a spiritual connection. A space that provides a refuge from the stress of daily living, where one's thoughts can become calm and serene, allowing a sense of tranquility and peacefulness to arise from within. One's own personal sanctuary for soul rejuvenation.
The concept of a sacred garden is not limited to a single space in the yard. Depending on your own property, you could have a series of connected sacred spaces that you collectively consider your sanctuary gardens. Each space may be unique, with its own set of criteria. One may be a hidden retreat conducive for private meditation, another a space filled with crystals for healing and another a perfect place to observe the rising or setting of the sun. Having more than one area in which to enjoy the benefits of a thoughtfully designed sanctuary is a wonderful way to maximize the use of your outdoor environment.
Sacred Garden Design Process
A “plan” is really just an accumulation of design ideas that are put down on paper as a means to communicate and organize your ideas relative to the property. A plan consists of ideas, concepts and specifications that all come together during construction. Landscaping combines art and science, design combines both right brain and left brain functions.
Simply stated, right brain functions deal primarily with concepts, spatial organization, feelings, ideas and imagination.
It is the more “creative” side of the brain. The left side of the brain focuses on linear thinking, how to, problem solving in a cause “and effect type relationship. It is highly organized and tends to process information on a single topic. It tends to be more judgmental because its tendency is to classify everything. Good design uses both sides of the brain simultaneously in a kind of see-saw. Going from one extreme to the other and arriving at a balance that is in harmony with the criteria given.
Exploring Your Inner Garden
I am sure you perhaps have looked at many pictures, magazines and websites browsing through design ideas for gardens, flowers, benches, pools and planters, not to mention the public gardens and even your neighborhood, and we need to go through a process so that we can help sort out the sensory overload you may be experiencing.
There is a step in the design process that is often overlooked in the landscape design industry. Many landscapes get designed and installed based on functional criteria such as a large play area, flower beds, bbq island, patio sitting area, etc. Oh sure, sometimes the owner may add some finishing touches by adding a birdbath or grouping of pots.
There is a level or depth of meaning that is what makes a garden have soul. You can sense it when you visit a particularly spectacular garden, or see a picture in a magazine of that “perfect” setting in which you can almost taste what it would be like to be there. It is a reflection of the emotional connection the owner/designer/builder/gardener has allowed to be seen.
A residential garden is a private garden. Your thoughts, desires, dreams and aspirations are private as well. Why not express yourself in the design of your garden? We have to find out what the emotional connection is to the
qualities of a garden that you find profound and beautiful. Our purpose for going to our “inner garden” will be to identify those emotional connections that our soul will reveal to us.