Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Beauty as an index of Godliness (and goodness)

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Wells Cathedral, Somerset

Since Beauty is as aspect of The Good, then it is an index of Godliness - no less than virtue.

And the creation of Beauty is something very special.

By and large, modern Man sometimes inhabits beauty:


[Merton College, Oxford - from The Meadows]

But cannot match the beauty of the past.

Well, so be it. Modern Man is not as Good as men of the past were Good - nor is he as intelligent, nor as creative; so he cannot match such Beauty.

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But what modern Man does is revealing of the state of his soul.

Modern man, sometimes from spite, but sometimes from ingrained active evil (from having come to believe that ugliness is beauty, and beauty is kitsch) does not even try to create beauty. Rather he sabotages Beauty by juxtaposing ugliness, and destroys Beauty where he dares; and makes ugliness by which he reveals the true state of his soul.

The soul-crushing vileness, the nihilism of the modern built environment - its architecture, the planning, its aspirations - is an index of the true state of modern man.

The proliferation of concrete and glass office block in drab colours, with no windows and open-plan design is a precise image of the souls of the managers, the bureaucrats, the politicians, the planners and architects who designed and built it - just as the Cathedrals and Colleges of medieval England are an exact image of the souls of those who wanted and made them.

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Modern Beauty is not so rich, deep, intense or satisfying as ancient Beauty - how could it be? - there is at best in our work a lightness, a sunny-coolness, a child-like naivete...  yet a society lives in the creation of Beauty and there is a perennial freshness in any genuine and heart-felt attempt to Make Beautiful Things whether they are pictures, movies, poems, stories, pieces of music, of buildings.


[Civic Centre, Newcastle upon Tyne]
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I find it nauseating that the anti-Good inhabitants, the thieving, monopolizing colonists of ancient and religious Beauty, appropriate and exploit it for their ugly, lying and wicked programmes. 

When the secular Leftist occupiers of the English Cathedrals and Colleges, built in the past and on devout Christianity, advertise their destructive agendas using the prestige and awesomeness of Christian creativity; they boast of that which they despise in order the better to subvert traditional values and true religion. 

They do not own Beauty, they are not even trying to make Beauty - they are a bunch of pirates, looters, carpetbaggers; who regard Beauty as - at best - a resource to be mined; and at worst and increasingly as a backdrop to gleeful vandalism.