Beauty and its Opposite

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by Abishai100, Feb 8, 2017.

  1. Abishai100
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    We celebrate comic book 'super-villains' such as Brainiac and Clayface and Poison Ivy in movies and storybooks.

    We talk about the 'spiritual catharsis' of surviving a terrible earthquake.

    We catalogue achievements and blunders in the world of fashion.

    We describe regular forms (Euclidean shapes) in geometry and talk about amorphous or chaotic objects (non-Euclidean geometry).

    Why?

    We're very fascinated by precision and symmetry and beauty (or harmony), so we're 'curious' intellectually about chaos, jagged edges, asymmetry, and therefore whatever is considered the 'opposite' of beauty.

    We can therefore attempt to construct a model for beauty itself and its 'shadow' of non-beauty (or ugliness).

    What is The Ugly? Can ugliness reveal why we're fascinated by comic book super-villains or earthquakes?

    There must be a relationship between 'undesirable chaos' (disorder creating confusion) and perceptions that are intolerable (e.g., murder, arson, accidents, etc.).

    Many consider arson and the wondrous but devastating (and painful) element of fire as great 'subjects' to use for the study of the contours between beauty and ugliness, since fire is 'undesirable chaos' and therefore representative of confusing geometry.

    The psychological-thriller film The Ugly explores the feeling of being lost in an institution plagued by monstrosity.



    The Ugly (Film)


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  2. Abishai100
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    Robots: Rhetorics


    I like using/referencing ethics stories involving intelligent robots (sci-fi) to talk about humanity's conceptualization of intelligence, since such 'art' enhances our analysis of the 'borders and contours' of imagination.

    We think of robots as either very rigid or outlandishly magical, since they usually symbolize some kind of non-organic imagination.

    The two fictional 'knight' robots Cyclonus and Rodimus, from the A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) fantasy-adventure franchise Transformers (Hasbro), represent focused insight, so we can use these two 'A.I. avatars' to examine 'nature rhetorics.' After all, doesn't nature hide some secrets about the metaphysics of beauty (and its opposite!)?

    Cyclonus is a wily and wolfish 'first knight' of the evil Decepticon robots who contend with the heroic Autobot robots. Rodimus is a Messianic 'first knight' of the Autobots and wrestles with the challenges of supreme leadership.



    ====

    CYCLONUS: The Decepticons will become mighty shadows.
    RODIMUS: There’s nothing simple about darkness.
    CYCLONUS: The Autobots are obsessed with governance.
    RODIMUS: Sentient beings yearn for innocence.
    CYCLONUS: Sensitivity is a sign of femininity.
    RODIMUS: Strength comes from ethics.
    CYCLONUS: The Autobots shy away from terrorism.
    RODIMUS: The Decepticons are too cruel.
    CYCLONUS: There is no nobility in sheep.
    RODIMUS: The lion roars but the shepherd sings.
    CYCLONUS: War is a face of intelligence.
    RODIMUS: Peace can only be wrought from humility.
    CYLCONUS: I need competition.
    RODIMUS: You should seek parenthood.
    CYCLONUS: Warlords will remember me.
    RODIMUS: Immortality is for friendship.

    ====


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    I personally think Jews are ugly. Not that everyone else is beautiful. But there is a certain outward ugliness to Jews that very much reflects their inner characteristics.
     
  4. Abishai100
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    The Darkside

    Shakespeare agreed with you when he presented Shylock and arguably so did Dickens in his characterization of Fagin.

    They always say things like "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," but where does beauty reside/preside/originate?

    When we think of a virus or a malignant plague, we think of deformity, decay, and degradation which corrodes our social perception of beauty (and vitality).

    A computer virus on the other hand is rather geometrical and efficient (just like a 'normal' computer algorithm) and its only 'ugliness' is in its 'intention' to corrupt and destroy 'normal' algorithms and supplant them in favor of a subjugating or dominating 'contrary algorithm.' In this way we can ascribe a 'handedness' or 'cardinality' to normal algorithms (suggesting they are the 'clockwise function') and to computer viruses (suggesting they are the 'counter-clockwise function').

    If we therefore say beauty is in the 'dimension' of anticipated function, then ugliness could be in the 'dimension' of a contrary or opposing cardinality (or 'orientation').

    I like to postulate that all 'normal computer algorithms' are derived from a hypothetical 'normal Cartesian axis,' while computer viruses originate from a hypothetical (or even imaginary) 'tangential Cartesian axis.'

    We can therefore imagine that a computer virus is like an asteroid crashing into an Earth of normal computer algorithms, disrupting our anticipations of functional homogeneity!

    This kind of 'contour imagining' I think reveals the intellectual appeal of 'bizarre' comic book 'super-villains' such as DC Comics' Two-Face (a half-disfigured 'rogue vigilante') and 'parallax-reality' themed TV series such as Tales from the Darkside and The Outer Limits.


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  5. Abishai100
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    Skeletons


    Images of silhouettes or shadowy figures stir our imagination about etherealness, infinity, or even immortality (and sometimes ghosts!). We see figures of 'evil skeletons' in horror-fantasy films such as Army of Darkness and think about the 'conceptualization' of unusual afterlife 'entities.'

    A skeleton is, after all, merely a bone remnant of a living human, and if it is animate, we might think it is 'possessed' by some kind of 'energized' (and perhaps even malicious) force.

    Here's a God-Satan dialogue about conceptualizing art (and images/stories about skeletons!) as it relates to psychology rather than philosophy.


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    GOD: Skeletons frighten children, since they remind them of frailty!
    SATAN: Yet, figures of skeletons make for great ghost-stories and Halloween decorations...
    GOD: There's nothing wrong with 'ornamenting fear' with representations of unusual experiences.
    SATAN: I suppose that's why films such as Ghost in the Machine are so 'chic.'
    GOD: You're absolutely correct, and I wonder how such films will be 'translated' by archaeologists!
    SATAN: Scholars will remark on the playfulness of toys and the eccentricity of figures/images of evil.
    GOD: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder (as they say), but everyone appreciates symmetry and elegance.
    SATAN: Maybe 'evil' is simply 'ugly.' How else can you explain why kids fantasize about 'friendly giant carnivorous dinosaurs'?
    GOD: Youngsters need to understand why they characterize beautiful things as 'simple' and dangerous things as 'exciting.'
    SATAN: Nevertheless, comic book supervillains (e.g., Carnage) exemplify our curiosity about 'contacting strangeness.'
    GOD: Perception and anthropology are important to the mind, and the 'realm' of evil may be a 'construction' of confusion.
    SATAN: Yes, what we don't understand we might label as 'evil' or ugly' (e.g., Salem Witch Trials)!
    GOD: Think of a comic book story (Tales from the Crypt) about a hypnotically-beautiful witch...
    SATAN: We could coordinate 'analyses' of evil with conceptualizations of 'pure perceptibility' (e.g., holograms).
    GOD: Yes, then the hope would be to understand beauty and imperceptibility in terms of psychology rather than philosophy!

    ====


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