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174. Reviving Traditional Art

I recently sat down with Amy Mastrine, an artist who works in traditional mediums, to talk about the state of art. Finding a way to create new iterations of traditional art is something that would go a long way for our culture. Because I enjoyed this conversation, I wanted to revisit some of the great insights to discuss them more. Amy offered a lot of interesting ideas, so I thought it would be good to elaborate and offer my thoughts. Also, I’ve thought about doing this for some of my other interviews, so if you enjoy this, let me know! And, if there’s anyone I should interview, let me know here.

“Culture is the arts elevated to a set of beliefs.”

Thomas Wolfe

The Beauty of Traditional Art

Digital art lacks soul in some way. There are a lot of great things happening in digital art. For instance, video games are creating incredible scenes. Despite the beauty one can create with digital art, there is something irreplaceable about traditional art.

Beauty is Objective

Beauty is an objective reality. Although many people will argue it is subjective, it is an objective reality. However, people who argue for the subjectivity of beauty touch on something true. Because beauty is an abstraction, it does require a subject to observe it.

The highest form of art

What is the highest form of art? Is it painting, sculpting, or stained glass? In this interview, Amy called architecture the highest form of art, and I agree. Although architecture isn’t often thought of as art, I would say it is. In my opinion, art is creating beauty in an expressive way. Despite not being expressive in the same way, architecture does have this relationship to people because it is how we live.

“Eventually, my eyes were opened, and I really understood nature. I learned to love at the same time.”

Claude Monet

235. Naturalism & The Human Person | The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly Conversation of Our Generation

According to Wikipedia, Naturalism is "the idea or belief that only natural laws and forces (as opposed to supernatural or spiritual ones) operate in the universe. Adherents of naturalism assert that natural laws are the only rules that govern the structure and behavior of the natural world, and that the changing universe is at every stage a product of these laws." In this episode, I'll take a look at some of the good points and valid concerns of Naturalism. Then, I'll discuss how it falls short, and what corrections it needs. Valid Concerns and Good Points One of the good points of naturalists is that we can attribute most things to natural laws and forces. Every little thing that happens doesn't have to be a supernatural intervention. And, we know it isn't random due to the consistency of events. There is a time in pagan cultures when everything was attributed to the supernatural. Even in the Judeo-Christian world much of the natural order was attributed to angel's intervention. I don't begin to say that I know how Heaven governs this world and it's laws. But it appears to me that there are natural laws and that God created the world with a discoverable order. When looking into that order, it is good to work within it's bounds, which is why we have science. Errors of Naturalism The cause of why I burn my tongue on hot coffee or the sun rises everyday can be naturally accounted for. But, the fact that all these beings exist as well as the laws that govern them, none of which fully account for the existence of the universe, has to have some other explanation. Naturalism cannot account for that. Instead, it seeks for a self-explaining cause that's within the natural order. Furthermore, there are well-attested events that do not fit into the natural world. Inexplicable miracles are one. But, there are phenomena like love and beauty that we do experience. However, the naturalist cannot explain these fully by neurons and brain chemistry. We need a deeper, spiritual explanation if we want to cohere with our universal experience. Corrections There is one major correction a naturalist needs to incorporate all truth into his worldview. That is a recognition of the spiritual. Miracles, religious experiences, emotions, and beauty aren't simply natural phenomena. Rather, they are true experiences of something outside of the natural order. To see this in art, read The Soul of the World, C.S. Lewis, G.K. Chesterton, or Tolkien's Lord of the Rings to see how this plays out. They demonstrate that there is more to this world than the naturalist can explain. And, they do it both with philosophy and story-telling. Related Episodes in this Series What is Objective Reality? What is Subjective Reality? Unity of Subject and Object The Golden Mean for Understanding Objective and Subjective Reality — Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/conofourgen/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/conofourgen/support
  1. 235. Naturalism & The Human Person | The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly
  2. 234. The Golden Mean for Understanding Objective and Subjective Reality
  3. 233. Is Patriotism Good? | Reflections on the 4th of July
  4. 232. Unity of Subject and Object
  5. 231. What is Subjective Reality?

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