Do We Learn To Love Bad Art?


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Greg:

Beautiful? Why?

Ugly? Why? Please answer succinctly and clearly.

Corpus Hypercubus

by Salvador Dali

Dali_CorpusHypercubus1954.jpg

A...

My subjective opinion is beauty. :smile:

Interpreted on a personal micro level...

To me it represents the beautiful moral principle of men loving women enough to do what's morally right by them... as well as women loving that moral quality in men.

Interpreted on a macro level...

That picture portrays only one part of the total narrative of Christ... dying. But the story does not end there. For Christ did not die... he only experienced death in order to fulfill a moral purpose which was greater than himself. And everyone of us should also fulfill a moral purpose greater than ourselves because it makes us better people.

Interpreted on a symbolic level. A cross is the intersection of vertical line and a horizontal line. This represents the point of contact between physical (horizontal) and spiritual (vertical). And a human body superimposed upon it demonstrates the intersection. Note where the shadow of the body actually falls. That locates the intersection at the heart.

Now, whether or not my subjective opinions agree or disagree with objective moral law is not within the power for either me or for you to decide, although you are perfectly free to also offer your own subjective opinion which also will either agree or disagree with objective moral law. And your own subjective opinion is also beyond the power of both of us to render the final verdict.

There is only one judge which holds the power to render the final objective verdict upon our actions...

... and that is the reality of the just and deserved consequences we set into motion by our own actions.

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We know beauty , also truth.

Truth is the lie that ugly is beauty... is ugly.

Can you possibly be clear because even I am getting tired of your apparent semantic psycho-babel, or, worse, your inability to clearly communicate with several of the posters that have asked you very targeted questions.

Sorry. That sentence needed a comma.

Truth is, (meaning it is the truth)

Claiming that ugly is beauty is an ugly lie.

what is ugly or beautiful is a matter of judgement or opinion, not a matter of fact.

I totally agree with your statement..

...and our totally subjective judgments or opinions will either agree or disagree with what is objectively ugly or beauty.

There is nothing in the physical laws of the cosmos that defines beauty or ugliness.

Again, I totally agree this has nothing to do with objective physical laws...

...but it has everything to do with objective moral law.

Nothing to do? The world is physical from top to bottom. From the very large to the very small. All that there is is matter and energy operating in space and time. There is nothing else.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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Nothing to do? The world is physical from top to bottom. From the very large to the very small. All that there is is matter and energy operating in space and time. There is nothing else.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Do you have peer reviewed evidence in support of that statement? What predictions does that statement make? Can that statement be falsified?

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We know beauty , also truth.

Truth is the lie that ugly is beauty... is ugly.

Can you possibly be clear because even I am getting tired of your apparent semantic psycho-babel, or, worse, your inability to clearly communicate with several of the posters that have asked you very targeted questions.

Sorry. That sentence needed a comma.

Truth is, (meaning it is the truth)

Claiming that ugly is beauty is an ugly lie.

what is ugly or beautiful is a matter of judgement or opinion, not a matter of fact.

I totally agree with your statement..

...and our totally subjective judgments or opinions will either agree or disagree with what is objectively ugly or beauty.

There is nothing in the physical laws of the cosmos that defines beauty or ugliness.

Again, I totally agree this has nothing to do with objective physical laws...

...but it has everything to do with objective moral law.

Nothing to do? The world is physical from top to bottom. From the very large to the very small.

...just as human behavior is morality from top to bottom. From very large acts to the very small.

All that there is is matter and energy operating in space and time. There is nothing else.

Ba'al Chatzaf

If that is really true...

...then there is no good or evil, and your life is of no more value than that of a cockroach.

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...then there is no good or evil, and your life is of no more value than that of a cockroach.

That kind of value is relative and subjective. The value of a roach or a human depends on who or what is doing the valuing.

The True, The Good and The Beautiful live upstairs in the brains of humans.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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...then there is no good or evil, and your life is of no more value than that of a cockroach.

That kind of value is relative and subjective. The value of a roach or a human depends on who or what is doing the valuing.

The True, The Good and The Beautiful live upstairs in the brains of humans.

Ba'al Chatzaf

In the brain of the jihadist, a suicide bomb is the Good and the Beautiful. And using your belief of only energy and matter space and time, their subjective opinion carries exactly as much weight as your own... or even of a cockroach for that matter.

With no objective morality... there can be only cockroaches.

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How do know that it wasn't beautiful, and that your current subjective opinions about it aren't wrong?

The same way I know that Ayn Rand was beautiful and that M Cyrus is ugly.

Do you understand that you're being asked to identify the "way" that you know that your judgments of beauty are consistent with what you're calling "objective beauty"? What ~method~ did you use to determine that your past judgments were wrong, and that your current judgments are not just as mistaken as you admit that your past ones have been?

It's your own responsibility to deal with your own interpretations of ugliness and beauty, I can't make your decisions for you... only for myself.

How did you manage to get it twisted around in your head that I was asking you to make decisions for me? You're being challenged to back up your assertions with logic and proof, not to make anyone's decisions.

It's like if you were to claim that you've, say, discovered cures for the common cold, cancer and AIDS, and then I challenged you to prove it. A rational response would be for you to offer proof, not to offer some insane comment that has nothing to do with the discussion, like, "It's your own responsibility to deal with your own illnesses, I can't make your medical choices for you."

You still need to identify and explain how it is that you imagine that you're accessing knowledge of "objective beauty."

Your request is too full of mistaken premises to even begin to try to answer. "Imagination" has nothing to do with it, and neither does "accessing knowledge".

You're on your own.

If you misunderstood my use of the word "imagine" and "accessing knowledge," let me rewrite the sentence to see if I can help you to understand what I'm challenging you to do:

You still need to identify and explain how it is that you believe that you've acquired knowledge of the existence of "objective beauty," especially since your position is that we (including you) are limited to making subjective judgments of beauty.

Does that help?

J

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Jonathin:

Unfortunately, I am coming to the conclusion that he is beyond help.

I even tried a painting and got the same disconnected responses.

He, apparently, cannot, or, will not provide a verifiable and objective standard for determining "objective beauty" and "ugliness."

A...

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With no objective morality... there can be only cockroaches.

Or Chimpanzees which is us. We are Chimp Version 3.0. We eat, we sleep, we shit, we fuck and sometimes we think. Do not attribute to much glory to to our species. In the long run we are a happenstantial glitch in the Cosmos.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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Jonathin:

Unfortunately, I am coming to the conclusion that he is beyond help.

I even tried a painting and got the same disconnected responses.

He, apparently, cannot, or, will not provide a verityable and objective standard for determining "objective beauty" and "ugliness."

A...

I think you're probably right, but I thought that I'd give it one more shot.

He's displaying an attitude/tactic that I've seen a few times in the past. Here on OL, I've seen Newberry and Coates use it, and a few of the kids at OO have used it too. I find it very fascinating. It's a specific act of posing as a genius: When caught in an irrational, incoherent position and challenged to explain it, one offers no substance, but just acts as if one is being bothered with personal requests to do others' thinking for them.

It's kind of a doubly irrational misidentification of how the burden of proof works. Rational people understand that they have the burden of supporting their assertions with evidence and logic. Irrational people think that they can make assertions and that others then have the burden of refuting them with evidence and logic. Well, these doubly irrational poseurs act as if they believe that when they make an assertion, it is their opponents' burden to help them support it with evidence and logic!

It's like this:

Doubly Irrational Person: My theory is that X is true.

Rational Person: Then prove that X is true.

Doubly Irrational Person: I'm not going to do your thinking and your homework for you!!!

Somehow we are being lazy and shirking our burdens by not proving his assertions!

J

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Interesting, I did not notice it worked that way, but now I think I see it a lot... maybe I have done it myself at times!

My understanding is that to prove an argument you must test it against the strongest counter-arguments. Moralist put himself in an impossible position by agreeing that aesthetic judgment is subjective, yet insisting that his subjective judgments correspond with an objective truth.

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Yep to both Carol and Jonathan.

I stopped arguing with Coates and even that did no good.

Some folks insist on believing their own assertions.

One of the places where I, literally, watched the explosive Objectivist movement's growth die, was the manner in which the split became so toxic that a philosophy built on rational self interest, was placed in the hands of a person who exhibited neither reason, nor, self interest.

The "it is valid because I say so" has never been a path that I will ever follow.

I posted this article in order to learn more about art critiques, from folks like you, Carol and Sephen.

Never expected to see moralist's "arguments," for lack of a better word appear on the thread.

Howver, he has been quite elucidating to me.

A...

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Yep to both Carol and Jonathan.

I posted this article in order to learn more about art critiques, from folks like you, Carol and Sephen.

Never expected to see moralist's "arguments," for lack of a better word appear on the thread.

Howver, he has been quite elucidating to me.

A...

Adam, you honour me to put me in such company, perhaps you meant "art" as all the arts - I know a fair bit about litcrit , but am also here to learn about visual art "seeing" and theory from such as J and Stephen (and Ellen).

Interesting how philosophy seems to clash with the power of art sometimes... is Aesthetics a true branch of philosophy at all?

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Doubly Irrational Person: My theory is that X is true.

Rational Person: Then prove that X is true.

Doubly Irrational Person: I'm not going to do your thinking and your homework for you!!!

Somehow we are being lazy and shirking our burdens by not proving his assertions.

Jonathan,

This is contextual.

Sometimes you get the equivalent of a "why-baby" in grown up form. You know, the game young kids play when you explain something. Then they ask, "Why?" You explain, then they ask, "Why?" You explain that, then they ask, "Why?" And so on. The "whys" never end and what's worse, the child doesn't learn anything from this. He's just trying to see how far you will go before exploding. :)

In the adult version, there is usually an agenda in the place of the "get-your-goat" "why" game the child plays. For example, if a person's agenda is to preach a determined ideology (let's say Marxism for the sake of argument so we don't get sidetracked by talking about specific topics that occur on OL), he will challenge everything you say with a reference to Marx or a bash of any view Marx bashed (or anything that is contrary to Marx's views). When you try to define terms, he will hit you with definitions and conundrums based on dialectical materialism. If you try to inject, say, Rand, he will reference Marx and ask you where in Marx's works does xxxxx occur. And on and on.

People like that tend to get snarky, too. They will say things like, "It's obvious to anyone with a brain that Rand's politics is based on Marxism, except she wasn't smart enough to know it. But look at her progeny like the Tea Party. Ugh! Only a fool would believe such tripe."

These people tend to mix everything up in a tangle and I believe they do it on purpose. They have 2 goals:

1. To cheapen and discredit any idea that is contrary to their agenda, irrespective of fact or logic. By "cheapen and discredit," I'm talking about public perception here, not actual logic or reasoned evaluation.

2. To gather converts.

And generally, in my experience, they are not as interested in converts as they are in wearing down others by wearing them out with an unending string of bullshit that questions every word.

I believe it is wise to tell such a person to do his own homework. Otherwise you will get sucked into a discussion that will go nowhere, ultimately become irritating, and most likely get personal (like a flame war).

Sometimes I have seen actual lazy people appear who don't want to read anything, but instead get the bullet-point version of a complicated issue from a discussion forum so they can posture as an expert. They generally make all kinds of confusion and repeat mistakes galore. A person like that literally needs to do his own homework, especially after he has been provided with explanations, quotes, and so on, and he still gets it wrong. (I'm talking about the actual understanding of an idea, not his evaluation of it.)

Other than that, I agree that "do your own homework" is often a ruse a person uses for bolstering his posture and covering over a lack of thought-out argument.

Michael

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Sometimes I have seen actual lazy people appear who don't want to read anything, but instead get the bullet-point version of a complicated issue from a discussion forum so they can posture as an expert. They generally make all kinds of confusion and repeat mistakes galore. A person like that literally needs to do his own homework, especially after he has been provided with explanations, quotes, and so on, and he still gets it wrong. (I'm talking about the actual understanding of an idea, not his evaluation of it.)

Other than that, I agree that "do your own homework" is often a ruse a person uses for bolstering his posture and covering over a lack of thought-out argument.

Michael

Hey MSK,

I understand that there are people who try to bog down a discussion with bickering over bullet-point minutiae. That's not what's going on here. We're not dealing with anything about which anyone could do any "homework." This argument isn't about Moralist's opponents needing to get up to speed by doing research and informing themselves of information that's readily available out there, but of getting Moralist to explain the essence of his position. He is the only one who can explain it, since he is the only person who holds his position, but he refuses to do so. The information is not available anywhere else out there, and therefore no one can do any "homework" via any method other than asking Moralist to explain his position.

The problem appears to be that Moralist has a delusional way of looking at himself and the validity of his ideas. He appears take the position that it is an axiomatic fact of reality that he is currently unerringly rational and brilliant, and therefore any opinion that he arrives at after a few seconds of thinking and emoting is the correct opinion, and, therefore, anyone else who is honest and rational will also arrive at the same opinion if they only put in a few seconds of effort. The fact that they are disagreeing with Moralist or asking him to prove his case is seen by him as proof that they are intellectually lazy, and that they are asking him to do their thinking for them! All they have to do is think, and if they think properly, they will find the proper answer and agree with Moralist!

Also, if you'll notice, Moralist doesn't have any actual knowledge or understanding of the field of aesthetics, but only an interest in ethics, and therefore he is attempting to replace aesthetics with ethics. It's the old "to a hammer, everything looks like a nail" scenario. Moralist apparently feels most confident arguing ethics, and is therefore trying to turn aesthetics into ethics (much in the way that Dr. Comrade Sonia, PhD, tried to turn aesthetics into health and fitness).

J

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The problem appears to be that Moralist has a delusional way of looking at himself and the validity of his ideas. He appears take the position that it is an axiomatic fact of reality that he is currently unerringly rational and brilliant, and therefore any opinion that he arrives at after a few seconds of thinking and emoting is the correct opinion, and, therefore, anyone else who is honest and rational will also arrive at the same opinion if they only put in a few seconds of effort. The fact that they are disagreeing with Moralist or asking him to prove his case is seen by him as proof that they are intellectually lazy, and that they are asking him to do their thinking for them! All they have to do is think, and if they think properly, they will find the proper answer and agree with Moralist!

J

Have we seen that before? With the alterations of deleting "and that they are asking him to do their thinking for them" and changing "lazy" to "dishonest."

Part of the next paragraph almost applies too, but she did have some interest in and knowledge of aesthetics, particularly in literature (little knowledge of other areas).

Ellen

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There is nothing in the physical laws of the cosmos that defines beauty or ugliness.

Again, I totally agree this has nothing to do with objective physical laws...

...but it has everything to do with objective moral law.

Nothing to do? The world is physical from top to bottom. From the very large to the very small. All that there is is matter and energy operating in space and time. There is nothing else.

Ba'al Chatzaf

What's the physicality of meaning?

Ellen

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What's the physicality of meaning?

Ellen

Neurons zapping in your brain. Next question?

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The True, The Good and The Beautiful live upstairs in the brains of humans.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Are they physical? (If not, then according to you, they don't exist.)

Ellen

Do as I did. Get a functional MRI of the brain at work. A PET scan and an EEG. Then you will see what is what.

All there is to us is ions going through a semi-permiable membrane.

We are bundles of charged particles with delusions of grandeur. We are bags of mostly water with a high opinion of ourselves.

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What's the physicality of meaning?

Ellen

Neurons zapping in your brain. Next question?

I.e., you're declaring all your thoughts contentless and of no relevance to what you say. You're a computer spinning and spitting out sounds and motions. Nothing more. 'Tis the program running, nothing more.

Ellen

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The True, The Good and The Beautiful live upstairs in the brains of humans.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Are they physical? (If not, then according to you, they don't exist.)

Ellen

Do as I did. Get a functional MRI of the brain at work. A PET scan and an EEG. Then you will see what is what.

All there is to us is ions going through a semi-permiable membrane.

We are bundles of charged particles with delusions of grandeur. We are bags of mostly water with a high opinion of ourselves.

Interesting. Particles with delusions. :laugh:

Ellen

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What's the physicality of meaning?

Ellen

Neurons zapping in your brain. Next question?

I.e., you're declaring all your thoughts contentless and of no relevance to what you say. You're a computer spinning and spitting out sounds and motions. Nothing more. 'Tis the program running, nothing more.

Ellen

It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury ---- signifying nothing (in the long run everything we do is nothing and the cosmos is running down, as indicated by the Second Law of Thermodynamics .

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The True, The Good and The Beautiful live upstairs in the brains of humans.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Are they physical? (If not, then according to you, they don't exist.)

Ellen

Do as I did. Get a functional MRI of the brain at work. A PET scan and an EEG. Then you will see what is what.

All there is to us is ions going through a semi-permiable membrane.

We are bundles of charged particles with delusions of grandeur. We are bags of mostly water with a high opinion of ourselves.

Interesting. Particles with delusions and opinions. :laugh:

Ellen

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The True, The Good and The Beautiful live upstairs in the brains of humans.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Are they physical? (If not, then according to you, they don't exist.)

Ellen

Do as I did. Get a functional MRI of the brain at work. A PET scan and an EEG. Then you will see what is what.

All there is to us is ions going through a semi-permiable membrane.

We are bundles of charged particles with delusions of grandeur. We are bags of mostly water with a high opinion of ourselves.

Interesting. Particles with delusions and opinions. :laugh:

Ellen

delusions and opinions are also physical processes. What else could they be?

I do not let my phenomenal self become too bothered by its essential physicality.

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