Forum Replies Created
June 29, 2021 at 11:02 pm in reply to: How does beauty function in the way you think about the world? #734
Jolene, I’m afraid that this past year has been so grueling in so many ways that I wasn’t giving attention to this forum. I’m very sorry that I never replied to this. But it’s a great comment.
I agree with you that people look for beauty from many perspectives. That’s one of the ideas that drives this site. The point I was trying to make in my comment was that not everyone has an outlet to talk about beauty in the same way that I do. In my field, I can bring beauty into my work overtly; it’s a natural topic in my area of study. I can write papers on beauty and give conference presentations on beauty and start a website about it. But my suspicion is that many academics who see a lot of beauty in what they study don’t have an obvious way to bring that perception into their scholarship. It may add to the pleasure they take in their work, and it may come out strongly in their teaching, but for many it will not find its way into their public scholarship. That’s frustrating for me because I want to hear about beauty from all those perspectives. One of the goals Jim and I have for this site is that it will a meeting place where Christian scholars can enlarge one another’s experience of beauty by sharing our those perspectives. So how do I find the engineer, the kinesiologist, or the sociologist who is fascinated by beauty but has never published anything about it?
This summer I’m embarking on an intensive project of interviewing people about their experiences of beauty. I’m especially (though not exclusively) talking to Christian academics, and I hope that you’re right and that ALL of them them will be able to tell me how beautiful their field of study is and how important beauty is to the work they do.
Victor, you’ve probably forgotten all about raising this question by now! But after a grueling year of teaching, I’m turning back to this site with new energy, and I find your question is still sitting here with no responses.
I think that beauty is perspectival rather than subjective. It really exists in particular places and things and people, which is why I say that it’s objective. But, because there’s so much beauty in the world, no one person can see all of it, and each person is positioned in such as a way as to see beauty that is invisible to many others.
I also think that sin can blind us to beauty. In fact, sometimes sin makes us prefer what’s ugly. Would you agree?