Friday, 6 April 2012

The connection between religion and urban planning

The Easter Holiday is one of the most significant celebrations in the world when it comes to religion.  For Christians, it is the time to mourn the death of Jesus Christ, son of God, who died for our sins;  a time of celebration as Jesus is risen from the dead, with a promise to return.  For those of Jewish faith,  it is the time of Passover, which commemorates the story of the Exodus, in which the ancient Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt.

Most people never reflect on why they believe what they believe. In a world filled with popular customs and traditions, few seek to understand the origin of things.  How does religion play a role in the design of our communities?  In some parts of the world where religious wars continue as we speak, land use plans recognize the need for separation toward a goal of the safety of its citizens. Heritage sites are often religion based.  Indirectly,  decisions which areimplemented and enforced are often religion influenced, timing of meetings and decisions timed so as not to coincide with holy days.  Identifying the cultural and religions aspects of a community  is as critical as applying science-based technology in the planning process.