Is beauty real?

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This topic contains 36 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  PopeBeanie 3 weeks, 6 days ago.

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  • #29007

    Unseen
    Participant

    This is Miranda Kerr, an Australian Victoria’s Secret model.

    Now, the fact that I certainly wouldn’t mind taking a shower with her aside, is she beautiful? Really beautiful? I’m asking this as a philosophical question. What about a rose?

    a bird of paradise?

    a puma?

    A McLaren roadster?

    or a Hokusai block print?

    Is anything REALLY beautiful?

    Oh, before a female member brings it up, the McLaren is beautiful on the inside, too.

    #29009

    Davis
    Participant

    Would this be as stunning not in black and white?

    Puppy dalmatian heart nose?

    Over priced black forest cake

    Colorful polluting salt farms

    Can a stud with a cosmic smile really be a nice guy?

    Can anything be beautiful yet not complicated?

    #29010

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Is beauty real?

    We clearly perceive it. If one can see and fails to perceive it probably there is some neurological disorder in play or severe depression. We know in women that a particular ratio of hip to waist to breast is seen as most desirable. We know human faces have to have near symmetry but not perfect symmetry to be seen as attractive or beautiful. And we know that the perception of beauty is not simply a cultural phenomenon.

    But why? Without looking through the lens of evolution we can not make sense of a universally innate sense of what is beautiful. No doubt sexual selection is involved in perception of beauty. Beyond the human form when we perceive beauty in nature or even an automobile it is in part a result of mathematical relationships. Our brains are hardwired to perceive patterns. None of the aforementioned mitigates against transitory cultural influences but neither do cultural influences mitigate against the universality of standards of beauty.

    Beyond our perception of beauty or a dog’s or chimp’s does beauty exist? Is there a platonic ideal of beauty that would be recognized by all intelligent aliens? If so it would be based on math. But if a life form has not evolved to have emotions then beauty would not exist for that life form. We FEEL it when we perceive it. It produces an emotional reaction.

    #29011

    Ivy
    Participant

    Is beauty real? Um, Yah….of course!!!!

    #29013

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I find music or concepts beautiful.  My cat was beautiful too.

    #29014

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Interesting song says Simon
    Lucy says beauty/truth…truth beauty
    some other says booty/truth…truth booty
    another booty has a duty to tell the truth
    and gets moody at the lack of truth in beauty
    if Lucy should be dead
    the truth that no one said
    sing song of what we read
    wont disguise the fraud in all we’ve said

    #29015

    Jody Lee
    Participant

    Beauty is real, but it’s subjective. I don’t think there is a certain calculation that determines if something is beautiful. I mean, perhaps, but on an individual level I’d guess.

    • This reply was modified 4 weeks, 1 day ago by  Jody Lee.
    • This reply was modified 4 weeks, 1 day ago by  Jody Lee.
    #29018

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I find a concept beautiful when it is simple and powerful and fits together with reality / other theories.  I think I like the same about beautiful music.

    #29019

    _Robert_
    Participant

    Beauty is an emotional response so it may not be ‘real’ at all. Different individuals or species may have a different response or no response and if no life is present no beauty is present, unlike the noise a tree makes as it falls.

    #29020

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Beauty is an emotional response so it may not be ‘real’ at all.

    You could say it’s a real emotional response.  Do animals have a sense of beauty?  We’ll probably never know.

    #29022

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Fr: Psychology Today

    Symmetric faces are construed as more beautiful than asymmetric faces in all cultures (irrespective of the race of the person being evaluated and the race of the evaluator). You can visit Bedouins in the Middle East, the Yanomamo in the Amazon, and Inuits in the Canadian north, and they will all agree as to who is or is not beautiful (based on facial features). Clear skin is a universal preference. Certain morphological features that connote masculinity (square jaw) or femininity (high-cheek bones) are universally preferred. Rotund Rubanesque women, heavier women preferred in Central Africa, and catwalk thin models, while varying greatly in terms of their weight, all tend to have hourglass figures that correspond roughly to a waist-to-hip ratio of 0.70 (although cultural settings can slightly alter that preference). Babies who are insufficiently cognitively developed to be influenced by socialization gaze at symmetric faces for longer periods than they do at asymmetric ones. I can provide numerous other examples that support the universal components of beauty but I suppose that you get the point. It seems that irrespective of the number of times that these points are made, social constructivists simply cannot accept the overwhelming amount of scientific evidence in support of the universality of some beauty metrics.

    I was tired when i wrote the following: But if a life form has not evolved to have emotions then beauty would not exist for that life form. We FEEL it when we perceive it. I have ridiculed science for decades when they make this error, this conceit. It is the equivalent of Religious brilliance in the geocentric theory. And then of course i felt vindicated when discoveries were made such as extremeophiles.

    And yes of course, Simon, other animals perceive beauty. There are dogs and chimps who make art. Sexual selection is as in play for animals as it is with us and without the influence of culture..MOSTLY.

    #29023

    Unseen
    Participant

    Beauty is real, but it’s subjective. I don’t think there is a certain calculation that determines if something is beautiful. I mean, perhaps, but on an individual level I’d guess.

    Finally, someone who takes the question seriously as a philosophical question.

    You are really arguing that beauty is NOT real in a philosophical sense. Both Plato and Aristotle saw beauty is a reality, though in different ways. Something in reality itself. Not something learned or personal.

    Aesthetics, the philosophical specialty which studies beauty is paired with ethics as one of the two so-called philosophical value theories, and parallel arguments rage in both fields over whether beauty or the good are real (built into reality itself) or, in some sense, are mere human inventions, making them far more ephemeral and trivial.

    Back to Miranda Kerr for a sec. I had a female friend who was a bit overweight, and her view of female body images was so skewed by her personal issues that she would have accused Miranda of being anorexic. Kerr is clearly not anorexic. She doesn’t even look terribly thin. No ribs showing. No muscle definition or bones showing through. Some women maintain body weight like hers almost effortlessly (I know: I was married to one for fourteen years).

    At the same time, just looking at historical paintings tells us that the ideal woman used to be quite a bit heavier than today’s ideal. So, that would tend to indicate beauty is simply a matter of fashion.

    But hold on, further analysis tells us that part of our concept of female beauty appears to be a constant: the waist-to-hip ratio whereby the waist is about 70% the circumference of the hips. Look again at all those old paintings, and the ideal woman always had a waist smaller than her hips. Does that mean this aspect of female beauty is part of reality itself? Or is it just for some reason built into the human psyche?

     

    #29024

    Unseen
    Participant

    And yes of course, Simon, other animals perceive beauty. There are dogs and chimps who make art. Sexual selection is as in play for animals as it is with us and without the influence of culture..MOSTLY.

    Simply because a dog or chimp (or snail) puts paint on paper or canvas, it doesn’t follow that they are applying anything a human would call an aesthetic.

    #29025

    jakelafort
    Participant

    https://www.thedodo.com/newman-the-pawcasso-1012546375.html Here ya go Unseen. There are other examples which are unmistakable, one of which i saw on tv, a dog that fetched household items and arranged in artistic ways.

    Finally, someone who takes the question seriously as a philosophical question. says Unseen

    Beyond our perception of beauty or a dog’s or chimp’s does beauty exist? Is there a platonic ideal of beauty that would be recognized by all intelligent aliens? If so it would be based on math. been there, done that says i.

    And yes there are innate biological constants as i have already indicated and cultural influences neither of which denies the reality of other.

    #29026

    Unseen
    Participant

    There is a problem when it comes to paintings and beauty.

    Few beautiful paintings are regarded as the pinnacle of painting as art. Rather, they tend to be viewed as “kitsch” or “bordering on kitsch.” (Kitsch here means something like “cotton candy for the eyes”). Compare some famous paintings:

    The Mona Lisa by da Vinci:

    When Dreams Come True by Abremov

    Okay, maybe Abremov is too extreme example of kitschy art. How about Botticelli:

    • This reply was modified 4 weeks, 1 day ago by  Unseen.
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