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Thread: What is beauty?

  1. #1 What is beauty? 
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    The pursuit of beauty in human civilisation has created spectacular phenomena in our lives, such as those of fashions, arts and many others. Beauty is a common language for all human beings. Every single human being can sense beauty no matter what their culture or background. However, can we really explain what beauty is? So far, the most well known explanation is the "symmetry theory" but it fails to explain many beautiful things without symmetrical features. This intriguing topic has drawn much debate yet no convincing explanation has been delivered. The old saying, "beauty is in the eye of the beholder", still holds its grip on people's minds and the mystery of beauty remains as illusive as ever.


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    Forum Professor Pendragon's Avatar
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    In a philosophical sense, maybe we can't explain the concept of beauty because the word 'beauty' is simply wrong :wink:

    People often come up with words which can mean many things, with different causes and effects. The word 'love' is another example: loving your partner means something different then loving humanity, or loving hamburgers :P In the same way 'beauty' can mean anything from a kind of abstract beauty (like symmetry in architecture or the beauty of a nearly perfect circle) or the abstract beauty of a beautiful mind or idea, to purely physical and sexual attraction. If we brake up the word 'beauty' to all it's different manifestations, it'll probibly be easier to understand how beauty works.


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    Forum Sophomore CaveatLector's Avatar
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    Beauty = 1:1.618
    .
    .
    .
    Cogito, ergo doleo.

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    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaveatLector
    Beauty = 1:1.618
    ah the Golden Proportion :-D old Leonardo Fibonacci found a diamond there

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    Forum Isotope Zelos's Avatar
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    beauty is in the lookers eyes
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

    On the eighth day Zelos said: 'Let there be darkness,' and the light was never again seen.

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  7. #6  
    墨子 DaBOB's Avatar
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    Beauty is truth. Truth being: everything in it's true form. This, I guess, would bring up another question.
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
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    if thats so, why is some Beautyfull ppl nothing but a big fat lie?
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

    On the eighth day Zelos said: 'Let there be darkness,' and the light was never again seen.

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  9. #8  
    Forum Professor Zwolver's Avatar
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    Beauty is a combination of the following

    Beauty is health.. if a person's skin is soft smooth without any roughness
    Beauty is taste.. it's body and the form of it's face (everybody has their own demands)
    Beauty is fertility.. curves on the right places and a sexy attitude
    Beauty is personality.. it should about how your are like, what your think, and why.
    Beauty is power.. sounds strange, but anyone with influence is instantly more desirable

    anyone ad's??
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    Forum Freshman Leukocyte's Avatar
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    Symmetry.
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  11. #10  
    Forum Isotope Zelos's Avatar
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    beuty is in the watchers eyes
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

    On the eighth day Zelos said: 'Let there be darkness,' and the light was never again seen.

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    Forum Freshman TheThinker's Avatar
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    I think that this discusion is a open and closed case. Zelos is 100% corect in this matter


    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder
    When the wires are all down and your heart is coverd with the snows of pessimism and the ice of cynicism, then, and only then, are you grown old.
    From an address by General MacArthur
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pendragon
    In a philosophical sense, maybe we can't explain the concept of beauty because the word 'beauty' is simply wrong :wink:

    People often come up with words which can mean many things, with different causes and effects. The word 'love' is another example: loving your partner means something different then loving humanity, or loving hamburgers :P In the same way 'beauty' can mean anything from a kind of abstract beauty (like symmetry in architecture or the beauty of a nearly perfect circle) or the abstract beauty of a beautiful mind or idea, to purely physical and sexual attraction. If we brake up the word 'beauty' to all it's different manifestations, it'll probibly be easier to understand how beauty works.

    Pendragon is right in his approach. But I think I have an answer to the myth "beauty lies in the eye of the beholder". For example when you look at the face of a beautiful woman what makes you think she is beautiful? I think it is because that's the kind of face you want to see. When I look at Charlize Theron I find her very very beautiful. But when I look at Paris Hilton I don't find anything of beauty. Now some people will tell you exactly the opposite. They will tell you that Paris Hilton is beautiful and Charlize Theron is not. I think its a matter of what you want to see. I want to see Charlize Theron because I like her movies. If you see what you want to see it is beautiful else not.

    Personally I don't find any beauty in buildings and man made forms. But I find trees, birds and animals very beautiful. To me the countryside is beautiful than the city. For you it may be the exact opposite. Hence it is all a matter of what you want to see and what you do not want to see. Where you want to be and where you do not want to be.
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    Forum Freshman TheThinker's Avatar
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    Personally I don't find any beauty in buildings and man made forms. But I find trees, birds and animals very beautiful. To me the countryside is beautiful than the city. For you it may be the exact opposite. Hence it is all a matter of what you want to see and what you do not want to see. Where you want to be and where you do not want to be.[/quote]

    But you are beholding the beauty of nature correct
    When the wires are all down and your heart is coverd with the snows of pessimism and the ice of cynicism, then, and only then, are you grown old.
    From an address by General MacArthur
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    Forum Professor Pendragon's Avatar
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    Good to see that this discussion is still alive

    There was a thread with the same name in social sciences. I actually like one of my posts there, so I'll just shamelessly quite myself then :wink:

    Quote Originally Posted by Pendragon
    I think the recognition of beauty has much to do with positive associations. During everyday life people create associations with everything they see, some associations are stronger then others (and can be either positive or negative). I think especially those associations established during childhood are very important. Now when you see some person or object or feel or taste something, you'll get all those associations back which you ever attached to it, making your experience either pleasent or annoying. In case it's a purely visual experience (without feeling or tasting anything), you may call a pleasent experience 'beauty'.

    Just my guess, but it would explain why 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder': everyone collects different associations during his/her lifetime, so some may experience something like a country cottage positively (they spent a vacation there or maybe tv advertisements gave them positive associations with it) while others may find it a horrible sight (could remind them of a bad youth in the poor countryside or so).
    --
    that thread is here btw, but let's limit ourselves to one thread instead of two.
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    Beauty is just mathematical elegenace and in correlation with the "Phi" proportions of symmetry. There is psychological research done that infants are attracted and more responsive to symmetricat things and humans naturally search for symmetry without even knowing it. That's why this is a plausible subject for defining beauty.

    But, I gotta say, I agree with "Beauty is in the eyes of the Beholder".
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    Beauty is my Elizabeth.
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    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    Beauty is my Elizabeth.
    That's either deeply and cryptically philosophical or offtopic :P
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    墨子 DaBOB's Avatar
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    I am beauty, or am I thinking of narcissism. :?
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
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  20. #19  
    Forum Professor Pendragon's Avatar
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    Guys pls keep this discussion interesting. Read earlier posts and comment on them, or present your own idea's.
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  21. #20  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pendragon
    Guys pls keep this discussion interesting. Read earlier posts and comment on them, or present your own idea's.
    It can only be summed up by saying that 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder' - When we talk about 'the beauty of something' we are indicating that in our opinion it has an attractive feature. Almost everything can be considered beautiful by someone.

    We all know what it is in our opinion.

    Simply beauty is an attribute assigned by man to objects that add to his sense of wellbeing.
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    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    pretty much what has been said, to me beauty is what is asthetically attractive to the person viewing it, which is the same as the eye of the beholder

    or to open it up a bit

    eg beauty is in the eye/ear/nose/touch or taste of the beholder if beauty isn't just seen as a visual thing

    which makes it something that is pleasing to the senses
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  23. #22  
    Forum Junior Artemis's Avatar
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    My believes:

    Beauty is something that has a certain effect on us. Everything we see, (art, other humans, animals, flowers etc.) , or can hear (music etc.) has a certain emotional effect on us. When this effect is the strongest and it gives us a remarkable feeling, we call it Beauty. This feeling can be a happy as well as a sad emotion and our state of mind is also on influence on or concept of beauty. When you feel happy, you find something that coincides with that happy feeling beautiful. And when you feel sad that works the other way round. So beauty is a very personal thing and yet some things are beautiful in everybody’s eyes.
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  24. #23  
    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artemis
    My believes:

    Beauty is something that has a certain effect on us. Everything we see, (art, other humans, animals, flowers etc.) , or can hear (music etc.) has a certain emotional effect on us. When this effect is the strongest and it gives us a remarkable feeling, we call it Beauty. This feeling can be a happy as well as a sad emotion and our state of mind is also on influence on or concept of beauty. When you feel happy, you find something that coincides with that happy feeling beautiful. And when you feel sad that works the other way round. So beauty is a very personal thing and yet some things are beautiful in everybody’s eyes.
    true, the beauty in many peoples eyes has a lot to do with symmetry. remember some studies on pictures of people with symmetrical faces and they scored higher. also proportions also have something to do with it also. If you were symetrical with a huge nose you wouldnt be nessacerely(can never spell that )be beautiful to the masses
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  25. #24  
    Forum Senior Imaplanck.'s Avatar
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    Shit I meant that for my girlfriend
    "A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeeded be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death." Albert Einstein
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    'beauty is in the eye of the beholder'

    I love this one! Nice.
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    Beaty is biologicly defined (geneticly) as things that shows good health.
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

    On the eighth day Zelos said: 'Let there be darkness,' and the light was never again seen.

    The king of posting
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    墨子 DaBOB's Avatar
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    no zelos... We are not jsut talking about people. We are talking about beauty.

    Also, many unhealthy people are still beautiful. I think you have your tunnel vision glasses on. :P
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
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  29. #28  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelos
    Beaty is biologicly defined (geneticly) as things that shows good health.
    'Beaty' might be but beauty is not, The color of trees may be beautiful because the leaves are dying, hardly good health!. The night sky is [to most] beautiful.

    Perhaps you should get out more and see some of these things.
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  30. #29  
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    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    Quote Originally Posted by Zelos
    Beaty is biologicly defined (geneticly) as things that shows good health.
    'Beaty' might be but beauty is not, The color of trees may be beautiful because the leaves are dying, hardly good health!. The night sky is [to most] beautiful.

    Perhaps you should get out more and see some of these things.
    do you know much about astronomy?, ive just brought my wife a telescope(that shes been after for ages) and getting into it myself. stunning views and suprising how much you can see with a modest'ish scope
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  31. #30  
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    Quote Originally Posted by captaincaveman
    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    Quote Originally Posted by Zelos
    Beaty is biologicly defined (geneticly) as things that shows good health.
    'Beaty' might be but beauty is not, The color of trees may be beautiful because the leaves are dying, hardly good health!. The night sky is [to most] beautiful.

    Perhaps you should get out more and see some of these things.
    do you know much about astronomy?, ive just brought my wife a telescope(that shes been after for ages) and getting into it myself. stunning views and suprising how much you can see with a modest'ish scope
    It's an interest of mine from many years ago, I have a scope but do not use it much these days.
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  32. #31  
    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    just brought her an 8" newtonian reflector with dobsonian mount, just trying to find our way around at moment stars are dots that look bigger but obviouslt not thatmuch bigger but thats understandable, but its hard trying to find the nebula planets and galaxys at moment
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  33. #32  
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    Quote Originally Posted by captaincaveman
    just brought her an 8" newtonian reflector with dobsonian mount, just trying to find our way around at moment stars are dots that look bigger but obviouslt not thatmuch bigger but thats understandable, but its hard trying to find the nebula planets and galaxys at moment
    Where are you on the earths surface? If in/near the UK you can find Andromeda the closest galaxy to our own - You will need to find the square of pegasus, then of the 'left' start move along two stars then up one then a little higher to the right and Bingo! First learn to find Polaris.
    Get a star chart.
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  34. #33  
    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    Quote Originally Posted by captaincaveman
    just brought her an 8" newtonian reflector with dobsonian mount, just trying to find our way around at moment stars are dots that look bigger but obviouslt not thatmuch bigger but thats understandable, but its hard trying to find the nebula planets and galaxys at moment
    Where are you on the earths surface? If in/near the UK you can find Andromeda the closest galaxy to our own - You will need to find the square of pegasus, then of the 'left' start move along two stars then up one then a little higher to the right and Bingo! First learn to find Polaris.
    Get a star chart.

    year were in the uk out in the sticks, thanks the next clear night we will have a go, weve found polaris by using the two stars off the end of ursa major that line up with it.

    thanks again, weve now got somewhere to aim at. weve been told to get a book called "turn left at orion" which is supposed to help for begineers
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    I ANSWER TO NO-ONE - The wonders of athiesm

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  35. #34  
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    Quote Originally Posted by captaincaveman
    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    Quote Originally Posted by captaincaveman
    just brought her an 8" newtonian reflector with dobsonian mount, just trying to find our way around at moment stars are dots that look bigger but obviouslt not thatmuch bigger but thats understandable, but its hard trying to find the nebula planets and galaxys at moment
    Where are you on the earths surface? If in/near the UK you can find Andromeda the closest galaxy to our own - You will need to find the square of pegasus, then of the 'left' start move along two stars then up one then a little higher to the right and Bingo! First learn to find Polaris.
    Get a star chart.

    year were in the uk out in the sticks, thanks the next clear night we will have a go, weve found polaris by using the two stars off the end of ursa major that line up with it.

    thanks again, weve now got somewhere to aim at. weve been told to get a book called "turn left at orion" which is supposed to help for begineers
    Right now get this, It's important! imagine polaris is the centre of a clock, a 24 hour clock, the two stars that point to Polaris are on the 1100hrs position. The numbers go round clockwise - That's Right ascension.
    Look up any star planet etc and it will give you the RA position.

    Declination is the angle (inn any direction) directly away from Polaris(this is at +90degs the celestial north pole.) at the top of the celestial sphere. follow round 90 degs then you get to zero, 180 around is -90 (which you can never see from the northern hemisphere. Orion is only worth looking at in the winter months.

    Orion is between 5 and 6 oclock Right ascension.
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