Gardens and Born Sights
Have you ever been to Suzhou? You can find over one hundreds private gardens from the old times in this city.
Suzhou is one of my favourite cities. Gardens in that area are known for their skillful combination of landscapes. The use manmade structures such as creeks, rocks, trees, plants, civilians, platforms, terraces and bridges. Together, they created a poetic atmosphere, just like painting that combines poems, calligraphy, and scenery all in well. The rocks in the garden don’t have to be huge to look meaningful as long as they arranged in order. The same is true with the creeks. It is not the length of the creeks but the term of the curve which give the garden the feeling of liveliness. This is the manifestation of Confucian belief of harmony between man and nature. And the tower is worship of nature.
I don’t see a lot of harmony between man and nature in those particular gardens. There is too much human interference. You never find vast expenses grass and trees, most objects are symbolic and artificial, and they are separated from outside of the world by a wall.
This is something to do with Chinese philosophy. The imitation of nature reflects the worship of the nature. And pursuit a poetic state of mind. The walls around the garden are in effect a way to show modesty and unpretentiousness. Also, it separates people with different backgrounds.
human’s interference is at its utmost with Chinese born sights, instead of allowing them to growing freely, the plant is restricted and distorted in a crowed space.
Indeed, born sights are forced on different environments to plants. However, people like them for the philosophic applications, representing and interaction with world through portrait landscape, the used to be a saying to goes: three leaves and two flowers represent the world. In other words, the few pieces of leaves and flowers are enough to make you feel the change of the weather, the earth and the universe. That’s the beauty of born sights, the miniature give people of feeling of closeness to nature.
Frankly, I still think is a bizarre way to enjoy nature by distorting at the first place. But thanks for your explanation, it help me understand that this is an unique view through an unique culture.
This is diversify of the world, we need to learn to accommodate each other. Maybe these were traditional Chinese gardens and born sights are all about.