Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Science of Beauty Everywhere

I have posted before from Rollo May's book, The Courage to Create.  For those of you who have never heard of Rollo May, he was an existential psychologist who studied with Alan Adler at one point in his career.  He was humanist psychologist, a faction of psychology which studies the whole person and how/why (s)he relates to the world.

Anyway.  Pardon the background of May.  I make mention - just in case you might be interested.  He wrote several books, I only have the one...and I wanted to share with you today what is written on pages 131-132.

Before this part of the book he is talking about mimes. 
Yes, mimes...those people that get caught in invisible boxes all the time?

Marcel Marceau
Yeah.  Not quite as creepy as clowns - but close.

So.  May brings mimes up to illustrate a point that mimes make a few motions, (and he gives the example of "walking a dog on a leash" that even though there is no dog and no leash) and our imaginations will fill in the gaps.

And he says the reason we do this is because human beings have a "passion for form."
     The human imagination leaps to form the whole, to complete the scene in order to make sense of it.  The instantaneous way this is done shows how we are driven to construct the remainder of the scene.  To fill the gaps is essential if the scene is to have meaning.  That we may do this in misleading ways - at times in neurotic or paranoid ways - does not gainsay the central point.  Our passion for form expresses our yearning to make the world adequate to our needs and desires, and, more important, to experience ourselves as having significance.
     The phrase "passion for form," may be interesting, but it is also problematical.  If we used just the word form, it would sound too abstract; but when it is combined with passion, we see that what is meant is not form in any intellectual sense, but rather in a holistic sense.  What is occurring in the person, hidden as it may be by passivity or other neurotic symptoms, is a conflict-filled passion to make sense out of a crisis-ridden life.
     Plato told us long ago how passion, or, as he put it, Eros, moves toward the creation of form.  Eros moves toward the making of meaning and the revealing of Being.  Originally a daimon called love, Eros is the lover of wisdom, and the force in us that brings to birth both wisdom and beauty.  Plato says through Socrates that "human nature will not easily find a helper better than love [Eros]."  "All creation or passage of non-being into being is poetry or making,"  Plato writes, "and the processes of all art are creative; and the masters of arts are all poets or makers."  Through Eros or the passion of love, which is daimonic and constructive and the same time, Plato looks forward to "at last the vision...of a single science, which is the science of beauty everywhere."

I love that.  The Science of Beauty Everywhere. 

I wonder what our world would look like if that was mankind's single science?

It was that single beautiful thought that I wanted to share with you before you and I begin our day today.  I hope you have a good one!

'Til tomorrow.