This blog is not updated often enough. This blog often has typos in it because I post too quickly. If you follow it, you won't be bothered too often.
RSS

The Necessity of emotion.

In Plato's republic he attempts to created the perfect State, and the perfect citizen for that State. This included the elimination of the family, as well as any relationships whatsoever. Take a small snippet from Republic "Women - all of them shall belong to all men and none shall cohibit privately; they shall bear children for the state."
Now, it's obvious that this wrong. We get the knee jerk reaction of "what!". But then, the idea begins to make more sense if we look at it deeper. After all, if relationships (especially those romantic in nature) are nonexistent than we would not have any problems with clouded judgment. People would not vote based on appeals to pity, or against the Death Penalty because "it's cruel".
But to understand why this is truely wrong we have to go deeper still. Why is emotion necessary at all. in matters of State? Why should we allow our emotions to cloud our "judgment". Why shouldn't we simply allow Logic to dictate our actions?
Because without emotion, there is no conviction, there is no passion, there is nothing to live for. It is a basic truth that every mans ultimate goal is happiness. Every action in every mans life right down to drinking a cup of tea is based off of what he thinks will make him happiest. It should be noted that men often have conflicting wishes. Sometimes we desire greatly to do something, but don't because of fear of embarrassment, humiliation, etc. But still man does what he thinks will make him most happy. So how does this relate? My entire point for this post can be summed up in one sentence: "Logic is what makes us believe something, emotion is what makes us care." For instance, I am a solid Libertarian, now I know that logically Libertarianism is the best root. But why do I care? Because of emotion. Emotion is what gives me the passion to do something about my belief. Without emotion, logic is futile.

-J.S.

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS

What is beauty?

It's not exactly an original question, but it's one that has been pondered and written about for hundreds of years. And of course, like everything else, I have my own opinion on it.
In the modern world there are really two definitions of beauty.
The first is what I believe to be the true definition: "Beauty is a characteristic of a person, place, object or idea that provides a perceptual experience of pleasure, meaning or satisfaction." beauty is something that brings pleasure, usually to the eyes, but also to the ears, and in rare occasions to the nose. Ultimately the perfection of beauty is in God. (Psalm 50:1-2)
The second, and often more interesting, finds its origin in the phrase "beauty is in the eye of the beholder". This can be a variety of things, the first that comes to mind is romantic attraction. A lover often believes that there is no one more "beautiful" (In complexion, or in spirit) than their Beloved. A more accurate phrase, then, might be "Attraction is in the eye of the beholder" but even that is faulty. Because it is evident that peoples ideas of what is beautiful or appealing differ greatly. This is where this second definition fails. We know that the perfection of beauty is in Christ, therefore isn't there some standard for what is beautiful? Yes there is. But in everything there must be things that will never be explained. Unless we accept this one paradox we will get nowhere on the subject of beauty. So, accepting what we must we'll continue.
Since we understand that peoples views of what is beautiful differ the obvious question is why? What makes people enjoy different things? There are several reasons.
1. Personality. Someone with a quiet continence is less likely to think a Rock song with great lyrics to be beautiful, because the form clashes with their personality, than perhaps a more bubbly or "hardcore" person who might find the song greatly pleasing.
2. Experiences. This really ties back to personality, experiences are what shape our personalities. Someone who has experienced the hardship of poverty for example would would find Gods blessings of prosperity more beautiful than a King who was born into wealth and stayed there his entire life.
3. Association. Someone may find something beautiful, or vise versa based on what they associate it with. This is especially true of music. If a painting was first seen during a depressed time of your life, and then you see it several years later it is probable that you will find it displeasing, if not downright revolting. If you were in a state of extreme happiness when you hear a song for the very first time it is more than likely that you'll love the song for life.
So why is the second definition defective? If it's not beauty than what is it? Simple: pleasure. Enjoyment and beauty are not synonymous. Beauty is Christ, pleasure is self. The closer you are to Christ, the closer you are to understanding the true meaning of beauty.

-J. S.

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS