Architecture involves designing, developing, and constructing buildings and structures. Mystical Judaism comprises focusing on spirituality through Judaic principles and traditions. Although the two practices include varying or contrasting elements, mystical Judaism and architecture draw connections in creating structures from a spiritual perspective. Mystical Judaism uses intricate symbols and metaphors to explain God and the cosmos. Synagogue design is a prime example of mystical Judaism and architecture. Many synagogues have elaborate geometric patterns and Kabbalistic symbolism. Integrating Jewish mysticism and architecture, especially in places of worship or community centers, promotes a sense of community and belonging.
These patterns let worshipers connect with the divine. These monuments’ geometry and other mystical characteristics emphasize their spiritual value and link them to Jewish heritage. Susana Weislederis an architect integrating architectural principles with Judaic spiritual teachings to pursue a unique approach to architecture while concentrating on spirituality.
Integrating Architecture and Mystical Judaism
Susana Merenfeld Weisleder is an architect with over four decades of experience designing and developing numerous projects, including residential high-rise buildings, commercial buildings, private homes, community centers, and places of worship. She was born on July 10th, 1956, in Caracas, Venezuela, and has been curious about spirituality since childhood. Susana completed her bachelor’s degree from Technion – Israel Institute of Technology in 1979, graduating Summa Cum-Laude in architecture and town planning.
The architect completed her master’s in infrastructure planning and management from Stanford University, California, in 1982. However, the architect focused on studying Jewish mysticism to find answers about life after losing her father and best friend. De Weislederevaluated and analyzed everything from a spiritual perspective and integrated spirituality into her work. Her work is an extension of her spiritual journey. The designs portray her belief regarding architecture as a sacred, spiritual, and mystical activity.
Journey of IntegratingArchitecture and Spirituality
Susana Weislederdeveloped and followed a unique approach to integrating her passion for architecture into her interest in mystical Judaism. She found and illustrated a deeper meaning and purpose in her work by incorporating the philosophies and principles of the two activities. She is the founding principal of MerenfeldWeisleder LLC, a Miami-based architectural firm. The company develops sustainable buildings while following Weisleder’s unique approach to integrating architecture and spirituality.
The firm’s projects include planning, designing, developing, remodeling, and repurposing new and existing structures, ideally from a spiritual perspective. MerenfeldWeisleder LLC completes projects in several architectural categories and segments, including private homes, residential complexes, commercial buildings, and institutional or community centers. Weisleder’sapproach of focusing on the architecture and mysticism intersection is evident in all projects, portraying a balance between form and principle. The firm’s designs and architectural endeavors showcase the unique integration of architectural concepts of Judaic mysticism.
Benefits of Incorporating Mystical Judaism into Architectural Design
Incorporating mystical Judaism into architecture offers several benefits, including enhancing spiritual experience, symbolic representation, improving the sense of community, and artistic expression. Mystical Judaism strives to deepen worshipers’ spirituality. Kabbalistic symbols and themes in Weisleder’sarchitectural designs boost spirituality. Her architectural projects promote community and belonging by including mystical aspects like symbols of oneness and harmony in residential and commercial projects. Integrating architectural design and mystical Judaism produces attractive buildings that showcase Jewish mysticism’s timeless beauty.
The unique approach enabled MerenfeldWeisleder LLC to receive recognition and achieve several milestones. Some accomplishments in her architectural journey include designing and building the 200,000-square feet synagogue in San Jose, Costa Rica, and a 207,000-square feet Jewish community center in Panama. The firm also won the People’s Choice Award for best design for the World Zionist Village in Beer Sheva, Israel, under de Weisleder’s supervision.
Overall, the passion for architecture and interest in mystical Judaism drives the life and work of Susana MerenfeldWeisleder. The unique approach of integrating the two activities is evident in almost all of her projects while influencing and inspiring others to explore their passions and interests. The inspiration derived from her father’s accomplishments as the president of the Venezuelan Cancer Society and Jewish community compelled Susana to follow her passion.
However, finding a deeper meaning to life through spirituality, de Weisleder incorporated spirituality and mysticism in her professional work. She perceives and completes architectural projects as a spiritually rewarding activity that fosters spirituality in everyday life while bringing people together. Although she faced several challenges in pursuing her passion and unique approach, she dedicated her efforts to strive and complete over 40 years in the industry.