Mon 19 Nov, 2012 04:56 pm
When I started practicing martial arts, just like any other person my technique was bad and unrefined, and there was a clear distinction between me and the teacher. The teacher's technique was beautiful, but more than that, it was correct. His motions made sense and every single movement was perfectly timed and acted, as if those were the best, or even more precisely, the true, optimal movements to do in a given situation. I have also observed this relation between beauty and "correctedness" in other sports, labors etc...
Then I thought about human beauty, that is, the beauty of the human form. Could it be said that a beautiful human form is a form which is more "correct"?
I would like to illustrate something first. When I listen to sad music, I feel the sadness evoked by it. But music is just a sound, so why some sounds have a certain effect, that should mean that sounds are not just plain, but transmit a certain quality that they have in them. This is exactly what the artist is doing, finding those qualities, and his work of art is a "medium" for those qualities as it expresses them, and the deeper the quality is expressed, or the "truest" it is contained in his work, the greater an artist is he. So is the human form, its a medium for the "human" quality.
But human form is not the only medium for "humanness", there are other mediums:
Intelligence is one. Beauty can be observed in arts and sciences. The concept of mathematical beauty comes to mind when a mathematical formula or expression is elegant and said to be beautiful because of its deep and encompassing grasp of reality. Literature is another example, when an expression is so beautiful because it contains so much truth in it that no more explanations about the subject are needed. And the people who bring to light are said to have "beautiful minds". And by saying that intelligence is a medium of humanness, I ,mean that it is one of the major things that define what it means to be human, and the more intelligent someone is, a "truer human" he is, more "humanness" is within him.
Goodness is another medium, and the "gooder" people are, the truer they are. After all, whatever might be the the purpose of existence, to achieve it people should first promote it, and that is what good people do. We hear "beautiful soul, beautiful heart" to be their designations, and these are not just imagery notions, but real feelings.
Of course not all mediums are equal, intelligence and goodness are superior to the form medium, its just that lower mediums are perceived with the senses and since the senses weigh so heavily on us we value those mediums more than we should, but they are mediums nonetheless
And there are many other mediums like personality or ability etc that we say are beautiful when people excel in them. So if beauty is perceived when a truer "humanness" is seen through any medium, is should mean that:
Beauty is the Love of Truth!
That is, we feel beauty when we see truth because we have an inner love for it, love being that which Recognize truth and is attracted by it, for hate is repulsion.
Here I talked about humanness but there are many other qualities, I just wanted to explore it in particular to illustrate my point. What I said is strongly related to feeling beauty but feelings are the driving forces of human nature, or perhaps that nature itself, and to understand something is to know its properties and motions, and feelings are those "movers", just like the forces of nature are the movers of the universe, perhaps its "loves".
If you can understand something, it was somewhere in your mind. When you see someone more smarter than you are, how do you know that he is smarter - because you recognized his superior intelligence, therefore you can also conceive of it, and therefore its in you also. So why do you still insist on calling him smarter, well because he could reach it while you couldn't, or maybe you could after a very long time and effort, maybe it would even take you more than your lifetime to reach it, but ultimately its inside of you, otherwise its beyond your conception and you can't recognize it at all.
So what is truth then which is so recognized by loved?
Trying to understand to some extant is also recognizing. When you have a fact and arrive at its causes, you then try to understand the causes of the causes etc. But you can't go on like this forever, at some point you stop because your mind is limited, and the final cause is just as it is, you just recognize it as such. So perhaps beauty is a simplest type of recognition, and any understanding is ultimately a recognition because the human mind is constructed so. And so is the entire world which is as it is for reasons that ultimately are as they are. And what makes the mind and the world recognize and follow a certain thing, perhaps this LOVE, this attractive force that not only recognizes truth, but is the force that is the "builder", or "God's will" that makes the world as is pleases for reasons beyond comprehension.
In other simpler words, LOVE is the entire existence as we can conceive it, and Beauty is its imposing will, and perhaps when we seek to know the truth we are really trying to recognize the love, which we are designed to