Buddhists aren't the only group to posit a philosophy that supports this view: "I-Am-Becoming-Is-My-Name" says Yahweh-the-Burning-Bush to Moses. Therefore, why not define the world as a construction site?
"The house isn't finished until you're dead," our New Denver Japanese neighbors told us. I take that as a useful observation. Science confirms certain small truths, does it not? Those of us who have some faith in science benefit most, perhaps; those who claim not to have faith in science must still make pacts with it, living as we all do on the very same watery planet that all of science does.
Yet that dialectical argument about Arcosanti - the "It's a construction site, not a community" assertion that *so* distressed so many people back in the day; that was Paolo being Paolo. Not easily diverted. Set in his ways. Human. Divine formation. Feet of clay confounding divine formation. Expression not limited or unlimited. Human.
Humans, I find, don't find it easy to put into practice what they preach. People like the Dalai Lama seem exceptional because they are, but look how much attention they pay to overcoming the inertia that makes "putting into practice" awfully hard to do. I know, for example, very few people who embrace the notion of arcology so totally that they give up driving. Consciousness of the problem of oil dependency does not mean that people are quick to embrace a simple solution. Not a bit of it.
Just because we wish to create a city that can be called an arcology, an urban entity, a city without cars, doesn't mean we will all immediately stop driving.
"The city is an organism of 10,000 minds," said Paolo; but can you imagine getting 10,000 people to agree to give up their internal combustion machines, all at once?
What would No More Driving really mean? Paolo himself never willingly stopped driving even though he did take up bicycling when it became obvious even to him that it was no longer safe for him to drive. Hard thing for any old geezer to do, give up his wheels. But surely all the arconauts can come together to figure out how to make No More Driving an urban reality, and put it together. I think we can and I think it doesn't matter at all that Paolo never did define how the "community" would come together to implement that. Paolo always said he didn't have the expertise to do that, that his task was just to put the blueprint out, so to say. To provide a physical plan. A map. The plumbing system.
Let the folks who can put social construction together figure out how to coax community spirit. Social Work? Not everyone's strong point. Hardly a crime, eh?
Always good to know your limits.