— As far as I understand, the temple is the "architecture of feelings". It is the building whose artistic form should evoke a special very strong emotion. It conveys the transcendental religious experience. This probably means that the church architecture should have the most artistic freedom. Also, let's remember the experience of the Western architects during the whole XX century. There were all those modernist experiments, with the churches too.
— Indeed, the calling of church architecture is to convey emotions and existential experiences. It guides human thought towards these experiences and even higher. Higher there is the Divine height, manifested in such names of God as Good, Beauty, Love, Light and so on. This is what the person should feel in the church. To convey these feelings of love and beauty is the task of the church art, apart from its theological aspect. And of course, there should always be the element of freedom, the element of searching. Always.
I mentioned earlier the synergetic principle of creativity. It is the human co-creation with the Holy Spirit, Who gives birth to this architecture. If that is so, the project and the building will be alive and genuine.
But with all this creativity and freedom, there are also some symbols rooted in our culture (I mean the universal culture) thousands of years ago. There are symbols that convey the idea of God. There are the inscriptions on the icons. There is the symbol of the chalice. For example, we use the Eucharistic Chalice as a chalice and not some dish. The vaults, the dome, the squares, the circles all have their symbolism. And of course it is necessary to use such traditional things.
In general, it's important to figure out what are the canon and the canonicity in art and architecture. This way the space for creativity and search opens up. Canon is more than following the unchangeable dogmatic principles.
Back again, the popular consciousness prefers that everything should be canonical. But the concepts of tradition and canon are confused. The canon is generally about dogmas. But the dogmas can be expressed through completely different traditions. Although tradition, or rather, traditionalism, are among the attributes of canonicity as such.
— I remember an example that you once gave in a lecture. There is some building that should be a church, but it does not feel like a church. It has beautiful, interesting, unusual, contemporary architecture. Yet, it's hard to call it a church. It looks more like a supermarket or a cinema. How to keep the balance? For there are the churches that, for example, don't have a dome. But nonetheless they feel like the true sacred architecture.
Knowledge is one thing, but perception is another. In general, this is what every architect (and every person) should develop - both of these skills. What is the sense of this? What is this for? What do we want to express by this? What is the idea? In other words, the theoretical basis. And another question is this: what emotions does this object evoke? How is it perceived? The visual experience of the viewer is also important here.
The problem of the project that I mentioned in that lecture is that its composition is simply falling apart. There are all these triangles… The triangle is quite an aggressive shape by itself. The visual proportions are respected there. But what about the manifestation of such Divine names as Good and Beauty? What about the feeling of calm, peace and love? I have questions. But how to explain this? Some theoretical basis is not enough. We need to live with our eyes wide open. We need to develop new neural connections for better perception.