Form and Function

The architectural principle that form follows function (despite all the rhetoric about how it’s not really true, especially in an increasingly shrinking digital world) is a truism for a reason. Doors are just tall enough to go over the heads of 90% of the population because that’s their function. Bucket seats are shaped in that form because their function is to hold our bums. Earbuds have that form so that they can be used functionally in our ears.

Form ever follows function. And this is true even when the form can have all kinds of varieties and beauties within its function.

Stalwart traditionalism, on the other hand, is all about function following form. Sending paper invitations to a wedding when evites are faster and cheaper. Wearing a watch when you carry a more accurate time-keeping device in your pocket at all times. Preaching on a podium at the front of a room even though with amplification and wireless technology the speaker can stand (or sit!) anywhere.

We forget culturally and generationally that there was a reason for starting certain traditions. And there can also be good reasons for ending them.

There’s no need to change something just for the heck of changing it. But there’s plenty out there where the form has lasted longer than the function, especially in the church.

And I, for one, want to figure out what those are.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s