Beauty of the 'Beautiful'

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Ganesh H Shankar
Beauty of the 'Beautiful'
The purpose of this image is not to conclude 'peacock is beautiful' which is tautological in a naive sense. The purpose is to ponder over the beauty of the 'beautiful'.

The image is a typical example for what the word 'beauty' we associate with - visual aesthetics related to symmetry, color combinations, harmonious forms, shapes and so on. No doubt it is 'beautiful' to human senses. What puzzles me is, this is 'beautiful' (probably more 'beautiful') to a peahen!! Do we share the similar sense of 'beauty' with peacocks and with other life forms in the nature? Is the concept of visual beauty universal, beyond human species with similar aesthetics? If so why so? What is its source within Nature? I am sure there must be something deeper to 'beauty' than what is visually apparent to us.

That is the beauty of the 'beautiful' I am referring to here.

In a related note, this reminds me of the two videos I shared earlier by two Noble laureates.





PS: Will be off net for a week.
Sun Jun 12, 2022 7:44 pm
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Ganesh H. Shankar
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Ganesh H Shankar  Joined CNP On 24 Apr 2008    Total Image posts 800    -   Total Image Comments 7350    -   Image Post to Comment Ratio 1:9    -   Image Comment Density 38     -     Total Forum Posts 956

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Commentby karthik_ak on Sun Jun 12, 2022 9:25 pm

Interesting discussion!
On a scientific standpoint, among the lesser species, beauty defines the genetic strength, the more vibrant and appealing the appearance it has the more stronger genes it carries.

If beauty is universal, every thing should be appear beautiful to us. But is it the case?

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Regards,
karthik AK
instagram | flickr

Commentby Ganesh H Shankar on Sun Jun 12, 2022 9:39 pm

Karthik, by 'universal' I meant universal across many different species in Nature (as in peacock appears 'beautiful' to us as well as a peahen in this case(assumption!)).

--
Ganesh H. Shankar
Wishing you best light,

Image
Fine Art Nature Photography



» Last edited by Ganesh H Shankar on Sun Jun 12, 2022 9:47 pm; edited 1 time in total

Commentby Sriharsha Ganjam on Tue Jun 21, 2022 3:32 pm

Hi Ganesh, if I may do so, I would like to point you to this little nugget below....
https://twitter.com/calvinn_hobbes/stat ... 5241568257
I believe your question is very similar and can't help but relate it to the point about "Ugly Things".

On a slightly serious note I have two topics related to Beauty that I want to list. "Desirability" exhibited in all Living Things and "Beauty" defined by Intelligence.

Desirability is exhibited in all Living animals is always aligned towards reproduction and it lies in the "EYE" of the beholder. And since that eye is always connected to a brain it's resultant outcome is always subjective to what's been inherited by genetics (More plumage makes a better mate...). The genetic definition of Desirability is hardwired and is something that cannot be altered (thankfully for the Octopuses and Hairy Bugs) and varies from animal to animal.

Beauty on the other hand is defined by intelligence is not inherited but it is learnt. This is the same intelligence that invented Art and since we Humans are the only known animals to create and appreciate Art, when we call anything beautiful, like say peacock's plumage or Vangogh's Painting (apart from the opposite human gender), we are actually using human intelligence that goes beyond the need to procreate. And since we are the only animals to have dabbled in this intelligence its difficult to generalise beauty and conclude if the patterns and colour combinations we find appealing will hold the same sway for other intelligent life forms as well.

To put it simpler, a Peahen will definitely appreciate the "Beauty" you see in your Peacock and his plumage but only she calls him "Desirable". But it will not be seen either as Desirable or as Beautiful by say an Octopus or a Hairy bug. It's just a lucky coincidence that the Peacock's plumage patterns and visual colours conform to our learnt concepts of beauty. Unfortunately for the hairy bug we haven't learnt that his hairy legs are beautiful and hence we label it ugly. But it's only in our eyes and not in a female hairy bug's eye.

At the end of it Desirability & Beauty are experienced very differently in the human body and thats where we separate the animal inside us.

Commentby Ganesh H Shankar on Sun Jul 03, 2022 2:40 pm

Thanks Harsha, for sharing your thoughts.

Beauty on the other hand is defined by intelligence is not inherited but it is learnt.


I am not sure about this though! More here.. I do think the sense of beauty is innate.

--
Ganesh H. Shankar
Wishing you best light,

Image
Fine Art Nature Photography