Daily Archives: October 1, 2021

The Philosophy of Beauty


The Philosophy of Beauty

What is beauty anyway? Beauty is often defined as a physical trait of things which makes those objects pleasant to see. Such things as landscapes, sunsets, beautiful humans and artistic works of art are considered beauty. Beauty, along with beauty, is perhaps the most important theme of aesthetics, among the most important branches of psychology. A survey conducted by a group of eminent economists in the early 1990s showed that more than half of all the happiness in life is related to the physical aspect of beauty, while only forty percent of happiness was related to beauty and appearance.

However, many philosophers argue against the importance of beauty. Some claim that beauty is purely a product of human imagination, and only an object of personal aesthetic appreciation. According to this view, beauty exists independently of humans, and therefore, cannot be measured or appreciated by any means other than our own sense of sight. Others subscribe to a thesis which regards beauty as having a psychological meaning, independent of any psychological significance. For example, it is argued that beauty has an aesthetic dimension according to which the value of a work of art depends on the audience it is aimed at.

Modern aesthetics has been a constantly evolving field, and in the past few decades, there has been considerable progress made. Modern aesthetics as a field is a result of advances in knowledge and technology. Thus, changes in the aesthetic sense have also been a result of changes in science and technology. With advancements in knowledge about the physical and psychical aspects of beauty, aesthetic theories are becoming more refined. Modern aesthetics therefore comprises a complex web of ideas, values and concepts, and are intertwined with a number of other fields such as science, art, sociology, psychology and economics.

The philosophy of beauty is a very complex one, and has multiple definitions. However, there is one thing in common among all these definitions – beauty needs to be viewed from the point of view of the aesthetic senses, and needs to be balanced against other competing ideas and values. Philosophical study of aesthetics is therefore a very important aspect of the study of modern aesthetics. It helps us to understand what beauty is and how it differs from other things and ideas.

Among the philosophers who have had significant influence on the development of aesthetic theory, some of them are Leo Tolstoy, Henri M. Nouwen, Max Weber and Sigmund Freud. Leo Tolstoy’s philosophy of beauty focuses on a particular type of beauty, the so-called ” sublime” beauty, which consists of unaltered physical and psychological qualities (taste, smell, touch, etc.). According to Tolstoy, beauty is nothing but the ideal state of being, and he believes that people living in this condition enjoy the most beautiful things in life (including love and friendship). In Henri M. Nouwen’s view, beauty consists of the entire spectrum of emotions, and it is defined by a central psychological feature – pleasure. Sigmund Freud’s famous concept of sexual aesthetics suggests that beauty is an unconscious, unchangeable, and primary component of human consciousness. The main aim of Sigmund Freud’s theory of aesthetic beauty was to explain the origin of negative emotions such as shame and guilt in the process of making love.

Philosophical aesthetics is a very important part of aesthetic psychology, as it helps us to understand the psychological foundations of beauty, and teaches us how to find and define beautiful people, objects and places. It also contributes greatly to our understanding of the mind’s process of choosing and evaluating the beautiful things of nature. For instance, it is beyond doubt that the concept of beauty is intimately connected with the concept of virtue. A person who appears ugly has probably lost the virtue, or has been deprived of a genuine or imagined sense of beauty; so that the only way to evaluate a person’s appearance is by assessing whether he is a true beauty or a false beauty. Aesthetic philosophy thus plays an important role in educating students about beauty, and helps them to differentiate between the real and the beautiful.