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Lyssa
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Lyssa

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyTue Jan 14, 2014 7:52 pm

Lyssa wrote:


perpetual wrote:
How woman act as a metaphor for Nietzsche is really interesting.

One such functional metaphor to Nietzsche is Distance;

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An interesting parallel between N. and Weininger;

Quote :
"Women and their Effect in the Distance. Have I still ears? Am I only ear, and nothing else besides? Here I stand in the midst of the surging of the breakers, whose white flames fork up to my feet; from all sides there is howling, threatening, crying, and screaming at me, while in the lowest depths the old earth-shaker sings his aria hollow like a roaring bull; he beats such an earth-shaker’s measure thereto, that even the hearts of these weathered rock-monsters tremble at the sound. Then, suddenly, as if born out of nothingness, there appears before the portal of this hellish labyrinth, only a few fathoms distant, a great sailing-ship gliding silently along like a ghost. Oh, this ghostly beauty! With what enchantment it seizes me! What? Has all the repose and silence in the world embarked here? Does my happiness itself sit in this quiet place, my happier ego, my second immortalised self? Still not dead, but also no longer living? As a ghost-like, calm, gazing, gliding, sweeping, neutral being? Similar to the ship, which, with its white sails, like an immense butterfly, passes over the dark sea! Yes! Passing over existence! That is it! That would be it! —— It seems that the noise here has made me a visionary? All great noise causes one to place happiness in the calm and the distance. When a man is in the midst of his hubbub, in the midst of the breakers of his plots and plans, he there sees perhaps calm, enchanting beings glide past him, for whose happiness and retirement he longs they are women. He almost thinks that there with the women dwells his better self; that in these calm places even the loudest breakers become still as death, and life itself a dream of life. But still! but still! my noble enthusiast, there is also in the most beautiful sailing-ship so much noise and bustling, and alas, so much petty, piti able bustling! The enchantment and the most powerful effect of women is, to use the language of philosophers, an effect at a distance, an actio in distans; there belongs thereto, however, primarily and above all, distance!" [N., JW, 60]

Quote :
"On the other hand, the high esteem in which virginity is held originally came from men, and still does so where there are any men left: it is Man’s projection of his own immanent ideal of immaculate purity on the object of his love.
Man demands chastity both from himself and from others, and he demands it most from the being that he loves.

Beauty itself is a projection, or emanation, of the desire to love. Therefore, the beauty of Woman is not something different from love, not an object to which love is directed. The beauty of Woman is the love of Man. Love and beauty are not two different facts, but one and the same. Just as ugliness derives from hate, beauty derives from love. The fact that beauty has as little to do with the sexual drive as love, and that both love and beauty are alien to desire, expresses the same thing. Beauty is something untouchable, inviolable, which cannot be mixed with other things. It can only be seen as if it were near from a long distance, and it retreats before any approach. The sensual drive, which seeks union with Woman, destroys her beauty. A woman who has been handled and possessed is no longer worshipped by anybody for her beauty." [Weininger, Sex and Character]


You could say Distance provides that sense of Being, of a Culture - which woman represents,,, while a closer approach exposes the Turmoil of Becoming, the ugliness, the transition, the impurity, the volatility of Nature...
At a distance, Woman is the Apollonian illusion, perfection of a steadfast grade of a culture; she IS the veil hiding the dionysian transitions of man's be-coming. Woman:Culture = Man:Art/Artist




"Masks. There are women who have no inner life wherever one looks for it, being nothing but masks. That man is to be pitied who lets himself in with such ghostly, necessarily unsatisfying creatures; but just these women are able to stimulate man’s desire most intensely: he searches for their souls – and searches on and on." [JW, 405]

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

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perpetualburn

perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyTue Jan 14, 2014 11:32 pm

Quote :
The Gaze of Orpheus (Maurice Blanchot)

The split in the Orpheic world is predetermined: there is light and there is darkness; life (above) and death (below). "The power that causes the night to open", the force that enables Orpheus to cross the boundaries of light and life, and to descend to Eurydice, according to Blanchot, is that of art. And yet, he continues,

   Orpheus has gone down to Eurydice: for him Eurydice is the limit of what art can attain; concealed behind a name and covered by a veil, she is the profoundly dark point towards which art, desire, death, and the night all seem to lead. She is the instant in which the essence of the night approaches as the Other night. (p.99)

Rendering this dark point, the lure, the point in which the artist's control is undermined, is also the object of the work of art:

   Orpheus' work does not consist of securing the approach of this "point" by descending into the depth. His work is to bring it back into the daylight and in the daylight give it form, figure and reality. Orpheus can do anything except look this "point" in the face, look at the center of the night in the night. (p.99)

The superimposed triangles depicted by Lacan in his article on the gaze figure the path undertaken by Orpheus, as well as the evasion, at each end, of the object of (artistic) desire:



Rather than obtained, the object of desire is always displaced. Drawn from darkness to light, its absence or invisibility is re-articulated as a gap, a notion of loss, a signifier, within the frame of language, within a poem of lament.

Whether looking back into the darkness or blindly entering light, Orpheus never sees his Eurydice outside her daily mask or beyond appearance, never, that is, sees her in accordance with his impulse which

   [...] does not demand Eurydice in her diurnal truth and her everyday charm, but in her nocturnal darkness, in her distance, her body closed, her face sealed, which wants to see her not when she is visible, but when she is invisible, and not as the intimacy of a familiar life, but as the strangeness of that which excludes all intimacy; it does not want to make her live, but to have the fullness of her death living in her (p.100)

Ordinary, social life merely fragments and stifles the desire to assimilate with, or possess the other's otherness as such; it attempts to decode that which is sought after as incomprehensible, to grasp or control that which is desired as undefined. The turning away from light and from language is desire's "only way [to] approach [its object]: this is the meaning if concealment revealed in the night" (Ibid., 99).

Both directions, down into the darkness and back into the light, are determined by desire. Yet, concealment is exposed at each end. It is depth that the subject desires, a perception of itself through the gaze's depth of field. But "Depth [ the three dimensional world which as such embodies Orpheus' descent] does not surrender itself [to a] face to face" (surface) encounter. It does not yield to the eye's perception in the dark, or to the mind's construction in the light. On the one end, the eye, entering the realm of the gaze, becomes an object, thus losing itself to itself as subject/ as eye. On the other, it is reduced to a geometrical point: a subject, a Cartesian consciousness trapped within its own bounds.

Between these two modes, between perception and consciousness, says Lacan, the encounter with the real is forever missed: Eurydice slips back into the night.

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Quote :
Blanchot characterizes inspiration’s costs as merely superficial, covering over a priceless depth:

"All we can sense of inspiration is its failure, all we can recognize of it is its misguided violence.  But if inspirations means that Orpheus fails and Eurydice is lost twice over… it also turns Orpheus towards that failure and that insignificance and coerces him, by an irresistible impulse, as though giving up failure were much more serious than giving up success, as though what we call the insignificant, the inessential, the mistaken, could reveal itself… as the source of all authenticity." (102)

Despite its syntactical convolutions, what is astonishing here is the conceptual ease with which this passage moves from the “misguided violence” of the gaze to its potential status as “the source of all authenticity,” an ease made possible, I would argue only by its elision of the body which underpins its celebration of failure and loss.  Blanchot represents Eurydice’s annihilation as a loss sustained only by Orpheus, and only measurable in terms of his artistic project.  We can’t see her loss from any point of view but Orpheus’s (not to say Blanchot’s) because Eurydice’s point of view has been foreclosed even before she disappears.  Blanchot’s violent blotting out of Eurydice’s perspective curiously mirrors the violence of Orpheus’s gaze, which requires her destruction in order to discover a higher order of “authenticity.”

The route Blanchot traces leading to this higher order follows a kind of boomerang effect, in which Orpheus’s flight away from the work leads inexorably back to its place of origins: “Orpheus’ gaze is Orpheus’ ultimate gift to the work, a gift in which he rejects the work, in which he sacrifices it by moving towards its origin in the boundless impulse of desire, and in which he unknowingly still moves towards the work” (102-3).  Orpheus is borne along by the “boundless impulse of desire” – the desire to see and know, to possess Eurydice more than to restore her light.  The linkage between vision and phallic power, the “substitutive relation between the eye and the male member” that Freud posited, is recapitulated in Blanchot where the gaze, like the phallus, defines the point of origin of symbolic activity, that threshold between worlds – imaginary and symbolic, lower and upper – where Eurydice functions as a placeholder until those realms are tentatively divided.  Orpheus both discovers and institutes the terms of division through his gaze; relationally, through his split from Eurydice and his “magical dependency” on her, and topographically, as they respectively take up their assigned places in the pre-Oedipal/symbolic hierarchy.  At the same time, his gaze recovers the work’s “origins” in the depths, and wrestles them back up to the light.

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Quote :
Inspiration is bound to desire by Orpheus’ gaze.  Desire is bound to unconcern by impatience.   A person who is not impatient will never reach the point of being unconcerned – that moment when concern merges with its own transparency;  but a person who does not get beyond impatience will never be capable of Orpheus’ unconcerned, thoughtless gaze.  This is why impatience must be the heart of deep patience, the pure bolt of lightning which leaps out of the breast of patience because of its infinite waiting, its silence, and its reserve, not only as a spark lit by extreme tension, but also like the glittering point which has eluded that waiting: the happy chance of unconcern.

-Blanchot - The Gaze of Orpheus & The Essential Solitude

pdf here:

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Quote :
This, of course, throws another light on the eternal question of why Orpheus looked back and thus screwed things up. What we encounter here is simply the link between the death-drive and creative sublimation: Orpheus' backward gaze is a perverse act stricto sensu, he loses Euridice intentionally in order to regain her as the object of sublime poetic inspiration (this idea was developed by Klaus Theweleit1). But should one not go here even a step further? What if Euridice herself, aware of the impasse of her beloved Orpheus, intentionally provoked his turning around? What if her reasoning was something like: "I know he loves me; but he is potentially a great poet, this is his fate, and he cannot fulfill that promise by being happily married to me - so the only ethical thing for me to do is to sacrifice myself, to provoke him into turning around and losing me, so that he will be able to become the great poet he deserves to be - and then she starts gently coughing or something similar to attract his attention... Examples are here innumerable: like Euridice who, by sacrificing herself, i.e. by intentionally provoking Orpheus into turning his gaze towards her and thus sending her back to Hades, delivers his creativity and sets him free to pursue his poetic mission, Elsa in Wagner's Lohengrin also intentionally asks the fateful question and thereby delivers Lohengrin whose true desire, of course, is to remain the lone artist sublimating his suffering into his creativity. Wagner's Bruenhilde, this "suffering, self-sacrificing woman," is here the ultimate example: she wills her annihilation, but not as a desperate means to compensate for her guilt - she wills it as an act of love destined to redeem the beloved man, or, as Wagner himself put it in a famous letter to Franz Liszt: "The love of a tender woman has made me happy; she dared to throw herself into a sea of suffering and agony so that she should be able to say to me 'I love you!' No one who does not know all her tenderness can judge how much she had to suffer. We were spared nothing - but as a consequence I am redeemed and she is blessedly happy because she is aware of it." Once again, we should descend here from the mythic heights into the everyday bourgeois reality: woman is aware of the fact that, by means of her suffering which remains invisible to the public eye, of her renunciation for the beloved man and/or her renunciation to him (the two are always dialectically interconnected, since, in the fantasmatic logic of the Western ideology of love, it is for the sake of her man that the woman must renounce him), she rendered possible man's redemption, his public social triumph - like Traviata who abandons her lover and thus enables his reintegration into the social order.

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Lyssa wrote:
Amphion in his reply (frr. 190, 192, 198, 200) praises music and song, decries a philistine absorption in the management of an estate, and declares that brain does more to save a city than brawn. The opposition between toil, combined with athletic and military training, and artistic or intellectuc.l pursuits is a thread that runs through the history of Greek literature; obviously it is always open to people like Zethos to reproach their adversaries for effeminacy, since music and singing do little to develop the muscles of the legs, and their indulgence does not help to accumulate wealth. Phaidros in Pl. Smp. 179d is scornful of Orpheus, who according to the legend was not willing to die himself in order to be with his dead wife in the underworld; he was 'faint-hearted, as you'd expect of a kitharoidos'. Misgolas 's predilection for musicians may imply a distaste on his part for young athletes and warriors of the kind portrayed in earlier vase- painting." [ib.]

Does it mean more that he doesn't kill himself?

A look at Orpheus's dismembering:

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perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 12:25 am

The incorrigible desire to reconnect with the source of creation/destruction (woman).  Art losing significance and regaining significance in the endless search for woman.  Art as maybe just a byproduct of the eternal attempts to close distance.  Metaphors will always be unfulfilling and the sublimated woman will always be a shadow of the real thing( but that too is a shadow)... yet too close contact with the real thing can become dull and unfulfilling.  So knowing how to keep the right distance.  Giving back from the source so only as to reconnect and give back some more.   Woman as a place of heat gained and lost.
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perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 12:30 am

Orpheus in pop music:

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Lyssa
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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 2:11 pm

@Perpetual, I haven't managed to read all your links yet, but speaking of Woman as Be-ing, and Eurydice, more properly, Eury-Dike - "great Justice", Heidegger uses the Anaximander idea of flux or "becoming as a penalty paid" with Orpheus' dis-memberment in the "face" of eury"Dike"; interesting paper:

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

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Lyssa
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Lyssa

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 2:14 pm

Orpheus

"When Orpheus turned
and looked back and knew
that genius wasn’t enough,
I wonder which he regretted most:
the failure of will,
Eurydice lost,
or what it must mean for her
to remain
a fraction of darkness?

Did he still tame animals
with his songs,
or would that seem a child’s game now?
Did he tune his lyre
to a minor key,
the last notes falling
like darkened leaves
to drift toward Lesbos?

In Balanchine’s ballet
the failure seems Eurydice’s fault
who tempted his blindfold off,
as if the artist must be absolved,
as if what matters
is the body itself –
that instrument stringed
with tendon and bone
making its own music."
[Linda Pastan, A Fraction of Darkness]

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*
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Lyssa
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Lyssa

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 2:16 pm

Eurydice by H.D. [a feminist rage version].



I

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] you have swept me back, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] with the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
above the earth, 
I who have [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] among the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
at last;


so for [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
and your [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
I am [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
where [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] drip 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] cinders upon moss of ash;


so for your arrogance 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] at last, 
I who had [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
who was [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.];


[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]you had let me wait 
I had grown from[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
if you had [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] with the dead, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] you 
and the past.




II


Here only flame upon flame 
and [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] among the red sparks, 
streaks of black and light 
grown [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]


[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] did you turn back, 
that hell should be reinhabited 
of myself thus 
swept into [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]


why did you turn back? 
why did you glance back? 
why did you [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] for that moment? 
why did you bend your[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
caught with the flame of the upper earth, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]?


what was it that [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
with the light from yours 
and your glance? 
what was it you saw in my face? 
the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] of your own face, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] of your own[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]?


what had my face to offer 
but[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] of the earth, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] colour 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] from the raw fissure in the rock 
where the light struck, 
and the colour of [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
and the bright surface of [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
and of the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
and as[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]




III

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]Saffron from the fringe of the earth, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]wild saffron that [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]has bent 
over the sharp edge of earth, 
all the flowers that cut through the earth, 
all, [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]all the flowers are lost;

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] is lost, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
black upon black 
and worse than black, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]




IV


Fringe upon fringe 
of blue crocuses, 
crocuses, walled against blue of themselves, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
blue of the depth upon depth of flowers, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
flowers, [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] of them, 
more than earth, 
even than of the upper earth, 
had passed with me 
beneath the earth;


[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] of the flowers of the earth, 
if once I could have breathed into myself 
the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
and [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
and the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
the whole of the golden mass, 
the whole of the great fragrance, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]




V

So for your arrogance 
and your ruthlessness 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]I have lost the earth 
and the flowers of the earth, 
and the live souls above the earth, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]and you who passed across the light 
and reached 
ruthless;

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
who [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
who need no presence;


yet [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
and your glance, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]:


[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
such terror, such coils and strands and pitfalls 
of blackness 
such terror 
is no loss;


[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
above the earth, 
hell is no worse, 
no, nor your flowers 
nor your veins of light 
nor your presence, 
a loss; 
my hell is no worse than yours 
though you pass among the flowers and speak 
with the spirits above the earth.




VI

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]Against the black 
I have more fervour 
than you in all the splendour of that place, 
against the blackness 
and the stark grey 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]I have more light;

and the flowers, 
if I should tell you, 
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
toward hell, 
turn again and glance back 
and I would sink into a place even more terrible than this.






VII

At least [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]I have the flowers of myself, 
and my thoughts, no god 
can take that; 
I have [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]the fervour of myself for a presence 
and my own [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]spirit for light;

and[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] with its loss 
knows this; 
though [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] against the black, 
small against the formless rocks, 
hell must break before I am lost;


[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
hell must open like a red rose 
for the dead to pass.

_________________
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*
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Lyssa
Har Har Harr
Lyssa

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 3:27 pm

Perpetual wrote:

Lyssa wrote:

Amphion in his reply (frr. 190, 192, 198, 200) praises music and song, decries a philistine absorption in the management of an estate, and declares that brain does more to save a city than brawn. The opposition between toil, combined with athletic and military training, and artistic or intellectuc.l pursuits is a thread that runs through the history of Greek literature; obviously it is always open to people like Zethos to reproach their adversaries for effeminacy, since music and singing do little to develop the muscles of the legs, and their indulgence does not help to accumulate wealth. Phaidros in Pl. Smp. 179d is scornful of Orpheus, who according to the legend was not willing to die himself in order to be with his dead wife in the underworld; he was 'faint-hearted, as you'd expect of a kitharoidos'. Misgolas 's predilection for musicians may imply a distaste on his part for young athletes and warriors of the kind portrayed in earlier vase-painting." [ib.]

Does it mean more that he doesn't kill himself?



If we define what is Masculine as that which stands apart, distinguishes itself, etc., from the bolded parts, its plain why the perception of Orpheus among the Greco-Romans is not the typical masculine ideal from the point of view of raising a culture. The "Great Refusal" towards total integration is a feminine tendency.

There's a paper called [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] which I haven't read, but the title of it made me think, to me gay science / joyful wisdom was N. using Orpheus' trope to present a reverse image.
Orpheus in myth is one who suspects Hades of tricking him, and turns back to check.
Its a mistrust in oneself, of the plutonic sub-conscious.
Nietzsche plays on this in JW, 377, which I think is the heart of JW - calling out "we homeless ones", like the Orphic Wanderer singing songs and new tunes for a new order of reality, yet saying,

Quote :
"The ice which still carries has become very thin: the thawing wind blows; we ourselves, the homeless ones, are an agency that breaks the ice, and the other too thin "realities".  We "preserve" nothing, nor would we return to any past age; we are not at all "liberal" we do not labour for "progress" we do not need first to stop our ears to the song of the market-place and the sirens of the future their song of "equal rights", "free society" "no longer either lords or slaves" does not allure us!  We do not by any means think it desirable that the kingdom of righteousness and peace should be established on earth (because under any circumstances it would be the kingdom of the profoundest mediocrity and Chinaism); we rejoice in all men, who like ourselves love danger, war and adventure, who do not make compromises, nor let themselves be captured, conciliated and stunted; we count ourselves among the conquerors; we ponder over the need of a new order of things, even of a new slavery for every strengthening and elevation of the type "man" also involves a new form of slavery."

The new Orpheus knows no 'turning back' to all that's been "lost"; there's an icy Distrust only of all those things that promise of a new happiness...

Orphic redemption of all dualities, of all animosities through his songs,, is here re-instated, slavery is affirmed.

Nietzsche will Not look back to cling to the past... he "knows", willing the future he envisions will definitely have his euryDike, the past eternally-recur in contrast to the orphic reincarnation mysteries.


Marcuse wrote:
"When Freud emphasized the fundamental fact that phantasy (imagination) retains a truth that is incompatible with reason, he was following in a long historical tradition. Phantasy is cognitive in so far as it preserves the truth of the Great Refusal, or, positively , in so far as it protects, against all reason, the aspirations for the integral fulfillment of man and nature which are repressed by reason. In the realm of phantasy, the unreasonable images of freedom become rational, and the "lower depth" of instinctual gratification assumes a new dignity. The culture of the performance principle makes its bow before the strange truths which imagination keeps alive in folklore and fairy tale, in literature and art; they have been aptly interpreted and have found their place in the popular and academic world. However, the effort to derive from these truths the content of a valid reality principle surpassing the prevailing one has been entirely inconsequential. Novalis' statement that "all internal faculties and forces , and all external faculties and forces , must be deduced from productive imagination" has remained a curiosity -- as has the surrealist program de pratiquer la poésie. The insistence that imagination provide standards for existential attitudes, for practice, and for historical possibilities appears as childish fantasy.


More specifically, we look for the "culture-heroes" who have persisted in imagination as symbolizing the attitude and the deeds that have determined the fate of mankind. And here at the outset we are confronted with the fact that the predominant culture-hero is the trickster and (suffering) rebel against the gods, who creates culture at the price of perpetual pain. He symbolizes productiveness, the unceasing effort to master life; but, in his productivity, blessing and curse, progress and toil are inextricably intertwined. Prometheus is the archetype-hero of the performance principle. And in the world of Prometheus , Pandora , the female principle, sexuality and pleasure, appear as curse--disruptive, destructive. "Why are women such a curse? The denunciation of the sex with which the section [on Prometheus in Hesiod] concludes emphasizes above all else their economic unproductivity; they are useless drones; a luxury item in a poor man' s budget."  The beauty of the woman, and the happiness she promises are fatal in the work-world of civilization.

If Prometheus is the culture-hero of toil, productivity, and progress through repression , then the symbols of another reality principle must be sought at the opposite pole. Orpheus and Narcissus (like Dionysus to whom they are akin : the antagonist of the god who sanctions the logic of domination, the realm of reason) stand for a very different reality. They have not become the culture-heroes of the Western world: theirs is the image of joy and fulfillment; the voice which does not command but sings; the gesture which offers and receives; the deed which is peace and ends the labor of conquest; the liberation from time which unites man with god, man with nature. Literature has preserved their image. In the Sonnets to Orpheus...

Or Narcissus, who, in the mirror of the water, tries to grasp his own beauty . Bent over the river of time, in which all forms pass and flee, he dreams:


The climate of this language is that of the revolt against culture based on toil, domination, and renunciation . The images of Orpheus and Narcissus reconcile Eros and Thanatos. They recall the experience of a world that is not to be mastered and controlled but to be liberated -- a freedom that will release the powers of Eros now bound in the repressed and petrified forms of man and nature. These powers are conceived not as destruction but as peace, not as terror but as beauty. It is sufficient to enumerate the assembled images in order to circumscribe the dimension to which they are committed: the redemption of pleasure, the halt of time, the absorption of death; silence, sleep, night, paradise - - the Nirvana principle not as death but as life. Baudelaire gives the image of such a world in two lines:

"Là, tout n' est qu 'ordre et beauté, Luxe, calme, et volupté."

This is perhaps the only context in which the word order loses its repressive connotation: here, it is the order of gratification which the free Eros creates. Static triumphs over dynamic; but it is a static that moves in its own fullness -- a productivity that is sensuousness, play, and song. Any attempt to elaborate the images thus conveyed must be self-defeating, because outside the language of art they change their meaning and merge with the connotations they received under the repressive reality principle. But one must try to trace the road back to the realities to which they refer.

In contrast to the images of the Promethean culture-heroes, those of the Orphic and Narcissistic world are essentially unreal and unrealistic. They designate an "impossible" attitude and existence. The deeds of the culture heroes also are "impossible," in that they are miraculous, incredible, superhuman. However, their objective and their "meaning" are not alien to the reality; on the contrary, they are useful. They promote and strengthen this reality; they do not explode it. But the Orphic-Narcissistic images do explode it; they do not convey a "mode of living"; they are committed to the underworld and to death. At best, they are poetic, something for the soul and the heart. But they do not teach any "message" -- except perhaps the negative one that one cannot defeat death or forget and reject the call of life in the admiration of beauty .

Such moral messages are superimposed upon a very different content. Orpheus and Narcissus symbolize realities just as do Prometheus and Hermes. Trees and animals respond to Orpheus' language; the spring and the forest respond to Narcissus' desire. The Orphic and Narcissistic Eros awakens and liberates potentialities that are real in things animate and inanimate, in organic and inorganic nature--real but in the un-eroticreality suppressed. These potentialities circumscribe the telos inherent in them as: "just to be what they are," "being-there," existing.

The Orphic and Narcissistic experience of the world negates that which sustains the world of the performance principle. The opposition between man and nature, subject and object, is overcome. Being is experienced as gratification, which unites man and nature so that the fulfillment of man is at the same time the fulfillment, without violence, of nature. In being spoken to, loved, and cared for, flowers and springs and animals appear as what they are -- beautiful, not only for those who address and regard them, but for themselves, "objectively." "Le monde tend à la beauté."
In the Orphic and Narcissistic Eros, this tendency is released: the things of nature become free to be what they are. But to be what they are they depend on the erotic attitude: they receive their telos only in it. The song of Orpheus pacifies the animal world, reconciles the lion with the lamb and the lion with man . The world of nature is a world of oppression, cruelty, and pain, as is the human world; like the latter, it awaits its liberation. This liberation is the work of Eros. The song of Orpheus breaks the petrification, moves the forests and the rocks -- but moves them to partake in joy.

The love of Narcissus is answered by the echo of nature. To be sure, Narcissus appears as the antagonist of Eros: he spurns love, the love that unites with other human beings, and for that he is punished by Eros. As the antagonist of Eros, Narcissus symbolizes sleep and death, silence and rest. In Thracia, he stands in close relation to Dionysus. But it is not coldness, asceticism, and self-love that color the images of Narcissus; it is not these gestures of Narcissus that are preserved in art and literature. His silence is not that of dead rigidity; and when he is contemptuous of the love of hunters and nymphs he rejects one Eros for another. He lives by an Eros of his own, and he does not love only himself. (He does not know that the image he admires is his own.) If his erotic attitude is akin to death and brings death, then rest and sleep and death are not painfully separated and distinguished: the Nirvana principle rules throughout all these stages. And when he dies he continues to live as the flower that bears his name.

In associating Narcissus with Orpheus and interpreting both as symbols of a non-repressive erotic attitude toward reality, we took the image of Narcissus from the mythological-artistic tradition rather than from Freud's libido theory. We may now be able to find some support for our interpretation in Freud' s concept of primary narcissism. It is significant that the introduction of narcissism into psychoanalysis marked a turning point in the development of the instinct theory: the assumption of independent ego instincts (self-preservation instincts) was shaken and replaced by the notion of an undifierentiated , unified libido prior to the division into ego and external objects.  Indeed, the discovery of primary narcissism meant more than the addition of just another phase to the development of the libido ; with it there came in sight the archetype of another existential relation to reality.

Primary narcissism is more than autoeroticism; it engulfs the "environment ," integrating the narcissistic ego with the objective world. The normal antagonistic relation between ego and external reality is only a later form and stage of the relation between ego and reality:

Originally the ego includes everything, later it detaches from itself the external world. The ego-feeling we are aware of now is thus only a shrunken vestige of a far more extensive feeling -- a feeling which embraced the universe and expressed an inseparable connection of the ego with the external world.

The concept of primary narcissism implies what is made explicit in the opening chapter of Civilization and Its Discontents - - that narcissism survives not only as a neurotic symptom but also as a constitutive element in the construction of the reality, coexisting with the mature reality ego. Freud describes the "ideational content" of the surviving primary ego-feeling as "limitless extension and
oneness with the universe" (oceanic feeling). And, later in the same chapter , he suggests that the oceanic feeling seeks to reinstate "limitless narcissism." The striking paradox that narcissism , usually understood as egotistic withdrawal from reality, here is connected with oneness with the universe, reveals the new depth of the conception: beyond all immature autoeroticism , narcissism denotes a fundamental relatedness to reality which may generate a comprehensive existential order.
[/colour]

In other words, narcissism may contain the germ of a different reality principle: the libidinal cathexis of the ego (one's own body) may become the source and reservoir for a new libidinal cathexis of the objective world -- transforming this world into a new mode of being . This interpretation is corroborated by the decisive role which narcissistic libido plays , according to Freud, in sublimation . In The Ego and the Id, he asks "whether all sublimation does not take place through the agency of the ego , which begins by changing sexual object-libido into narcissistic libido and then, perhaps, goes on to give it another aim."  If this is the case, then all sublimation would begin with the reactivation of narcissistic libido, which somehow overflows and extends to objects. The hypothesis all but revolutionizes the idea of sublimation: it hints at a non-repressive mode of sublimation which results from an extension rather than from a constraining deflection of the libido.

The Orphic-Narcissistic images are those of the Great Refusal: refusal to accept separation from the libidinous object (or subject). The refusal aims at liberation -- at the reunion of what has become separated.


Orpheus is the archetype of the poet as liberator and creator: he establishes a higher order in the world -- an order without repression. In his person, art, freedom , and culture are eternally combined. He is the poet of redemption, the god who brings peace and salvation by pacifying man and nature, not through force but through song:

Orpheus, the priest, the mouthpiece of the gods,
Deterred wild men from murders and foul foods,
And hence was said to tame the raging moods
Of tigers and of lions...

In times of yore it was the poet's part --
The part of sapience -- to distinguish plain
Between the public and the private things,
Between the sacred things and things profane,
To check the ills that sexual straying brings,
To show how laws for married people stood,
To build the towns, to carve the laws in wood.

But the "culture-hero" Orpheus is also credited with the establishment of a very different order -- and he pays for it with his life:

... Orpheus had shunned all love of womankind, whether because of his ill success in love, or whether he had given his troth once for all. Still, many women felt a passion for the bard;

He was torn to pieces by the crazed Thracian women.

The classical tradition associates Orpheus with the introduction of homosexuality. Like Narcissus, he rejects the normal Eros, not for an ascetic ideal, but for a fuller Eros. Like Narcissus, he protests against the repressive order of procreative sexuality. The Orphic and Narcissistic Eros is to the end the negation of this order -- the Great Refusal. In the world symbolized by the culture-hero Prometheus , it is the negation of all order; but in this negation Orpheus and Narcissus reveal a new reality, with an order of its own, governed by different principles. The Orphic Eros transforms being: he masters cruelty and death through liberation. His language is song, and his work is play. Narcissus' life is that of beauty, and his existence is contemplation. These images refer to the aesthetic dimension as the one in which their reality principle must be sought and validated." [Eros and Civilization]

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 4:01 pm

perpetualburn wrote:

Quote :
Inspiration is bound to desire by Orpheus’ gaze.  Desire is bound to unconcern by impatience.   A person who is not impatient will never reach the point of being unconcerned – that moment when concern merges with its own transparency;  but a person who does not get beyond impatience will never be capable of Orpheus’ unconcerned, thoughtless gaze.  This is why impatience must be the heart of deep patience, the pure bolt of lightning which leaps out of the breast of patience because of its infinite waiting, its silence, and its reserve, not only as a spark lit by extreme tension, but also like the glittering point which has eluded that waiting: the happy chance of unconcern.

-Blanchot - The Gaze of Orpheus & The Essential Solitude

pdf here:

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Nice quote; and exactly what I tried to say in the Han thread, except I approach it in the opp. direction and so don't call it "impatience", I call it "being ruthless".


Nietzsche wrote:
""It is still a long way from this morbid isolation, from the desert of these experimental years, to that enormous, overflowing certainty and health which cannot do without even illness itself, as an instrument and fishhook of knowledge; to that maturefreedom of the spirit which is fully as much self‑mastery and discipline of the heart, and which permits paths to many opposing ways of thought. It is a long way to the inner spaciousness and cosseting of a superabundance which precludes the danger that the spirit might lose itself on its own paths and fall in love and stay put, intoxicated, in some nook; a long way to that. excess of vivid healing, reproducing, reviving powers, the very sign of great health, an excess that gives the free spirit the dangerous privilege of being permitted to liveexperimentally and to offer himself to adventure: the privilege of the master free spirit! In between may lie long years of convalescence, years full of multicolored, painful magical transformations, governed and led by a tough will to healthwhich already often dares to dress and disguise11 itself as health. There is a middle point on the way, which a man having such a fate cannot remember later without being moved: a pale, fine light and sunny happiness are characteristic of it, a feeling of a birdlike freedom, birdlike perspective, birdlike arrogance, some third thing in which curiosity and a tender contempt are united. A "free spirit"--this cool term is soothing in that state, almost warming. No longer chained down by hatred and love, one lives without Yes, without No, voluntarily near, voluntarily far, most preferably slipping away, avoiding, fluttering on, gone again, flying upward again; one is spoiled, like anyone who has ever seen an enormous multiplicity beneath him--and one becomes the antithesis of those who trouble themselves about things that do not concern them. Indeed, now the free spirit concerns himself only with things (and how many there are!) which no longer trouble him." [HATH, Preface, 4]


I think you can only afford to possess this kind of "patient impatience" or ruthless "concern" with things that "no longer concern you", if you already have a premonition of what you desire; and that's how it makes sense, when N. writes,

"Since I grew tired of the chase
And Search, I learned to Find;
And since the wind blows in my face,
I sail with every wind." [JW, Rhymes, 2]

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*


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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 4:02 pm

Perpetual wrote:
Rather than obtained, the object of desire is always displaced. Drawn from darkness to light, its absence or invisibility is re-articulated as a gap, a notion of loss, a signifier, within the frame of language, within a poem of lament.

Whether looking back into the darkness or blindly entering light, Orpheus never sees his Eurydice outside her daily mask or beyond appearance, never, that is, sees her in accordance with his impulse which

  [...] does not demand Eurydice in her diurnal truth and her everyday charm, but in her nocturnal darkness, in her distance, her body closed, her face sealed, which wants to see her not when she is visible, but when she is invisible, and not as the intimacy of a familiar life, but as the strangeness of that which excludes all intimacy; it does not want to make her live, but to have the fullness of her death living in her (p.100)

Ordinary, social life merely fragments and stifles the desire to assimilate with, or possess the other's otherness as such; it attempts to decode that which is sought after as incomprehensible, to grasp or control that which is desired as undefined. The turning away from light and from language is desire's "only way [to] approach [its object]: this is the meaning if concealment revealed in the night" (Ibid., 99).
Between these two modes, between perception and consciousness, says Lacan, the encounter with the real is forever missed: Eurydice slips back into the night.

Correct, except Heid. came to the opposite conclusion in 'Elucidations of Holderlin's poetry';

Heidegger wrote:
"The dark light does not deny clarity, rather, it is the excess of brightness which, the greater it is, denies sight all the more decisively. The all-too-flaming fire does not just blind the eyes; rather, its excessive brightness also engulfs everything that shows itself and is darker than darkness itself.
...The dark light of the wine does not take away awareness; rather, it lets one's meditation pass beyond that mere illusion of clarity which is possessed by everything calculable and shallow, climbing higher and higher toward the loftiness and nearness of the highest one.
...The intoxication is that sublime elevation of mood wherein that single voice that can be heard that sets a tone, and where those are attuned to it may be led most resolutely beyond themselves."

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 4:39 pm

perpetualburn wrote:
The incorrigible desire to reconnect with the source of creation/destruction (woman).  Art losing significance and regaining significance in the endless search for woman.  Art as maybe just a byproduct of the eternal attempts to close distance.


If Woman is Be-ing, eternity, and Man is forever a Be-coming...,
"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." [Proust]

Art can be what Else that Distance can give you, without trying to even 'want to' close it.
Good desire is Greek desire, and it stops at the surface;

Nietzsche wrote:
"One should have more reverence for the shame-facedness with which nature has concealed herself behind enigmas and motley uncertainties. Perhaps truth is a woman who has reasons for not showing her reasons? Perhaps her name is Baubo, to speak in Greek?... Oh, those Greeks! They knew how to live: for that purpose it is necessary to keep bravely to the surface, the fold and the skin; to worship appearance, to believe in forms, tones, and words, in the whole Olympus of appearance! Those Greeks were superficial - from profundity ! And are we not coming back precisely to this point, we dare-devils of the spirit, who have scaled the highest and most dangerous peak of contemporary thought, and have looked around us from it, have looked down from it? Are we not precisely in this respect Greeks? Worshippers of forms, of tones, and of words? And precisely on that account artists?"[JW]

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 4:40 pm

perpetualburn wrote:
Orpheus in pop music:




Eurydice?...


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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 15, 2014 9:09 pm

Lyssa wrote:
perpetualburn wrote:
   The incorrigible desire to reconnect with the source of creation/destruction (woman).  Art losing significance and regaining significance in the endless search for woman.  Art as maybe just a byproduct of the eternal attempts to close distance.



If Woman is Be-ing, eternity, and Man is forever a Be-coming...,
"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." [Proust]

Art can be what Else that Distance can give you, without trying to even 'want to' close it.
Good desire is Greek desire, and it stops at the surface;

Lyssa wrote:
Nietzsche will Not look back to cling to the past... he "knows", willing the future he envisions will definitely have his euryDike, the past eternally-recur in contrast to the orphic reincarnation mysteries.

Is it the nature with Eros that desire demands one attempt to close the distance?

When I wrote that I wasn't thinking that in wanting to close the distance, you want to close the distance forever, or that in attempting to close the distance you're not perpetually dumbfounded when the object keeps slipping away... maybe the energy(tension) from this thought process of reaching fuels interpretations... The "wanting" to close it while you "know" you can't seems at the heart of the paradox, of the tension...it almost seems like you'd be giving something up of your core in not "wanting" to.  And in "knowing" you can't truly close the distance, you don't really want to(because that would be like voluntarily giving up the tension that helps you give to that which you want)... Yet you still "want"....I'm not sure that can/should be considered "clinging" either...insomuch as the process doesn't depend on getting the object.  Or maybe that's just an artist and not a philosopher.

Lyssa wrote:
The new Orpheus knows no 'turning back' to all that's been "lost"; there's an icy Distrust only of all those things that promise of a new happiness...

Orphic redemption of all dualities, of all animosities through his songs,, is here re-instated, slavery is affirmed.

Nietzsche will Not look back to cling to the past... he "knows", willing the future he envisions will definitely have his euryDike, the past eternally-recur in contrast to the orphic reincarnation mysteries.

Orpheus should know Eurydice is always "with" him then.

Quote :
"One should have more reverence for the shame-facedness with which nature has concealed herself behind enigmas and motley uncertainties. Perhaps truth is a woman who has reasons for not showing her reasons? Perhaps her name is Baubo, to speak in Greek?... Oh, those Greeks! They knew how to live: for that purpose it is necessary to keep bravely to the surface, the fold and the skin; to worship appearance, to believe in forms, tones, and words, in the whole Olympus of appearance! Those Greeks were superficial - from profundity ! And are we not coming back precisely to this point, we dare-devils of the spirit, who have scaled the highest and most dangerous peak of contemporary thought, and have looked around us from it, have looked down from it? Are we not precisely in this respect Greeks? Worshippers of forms, of tones, and of words? And precisely on that account artists?"[JW]

Nietzsche wrote:

There is something contrary to nature in wisdom that is revealed by its hostility to art: to ask for knowledge where illusion alone gives deliverance, salvation - this in-deed is perversion, the instinct for nothingness!

Quote :
"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." [Proust]

There's a quote somewhere in WTP where N talks about the ability or strength to re-interpret the past, give it new meaning ( Obviously a common theme with N, but it specifically went well with that Proust quote)

I don't think it's this.. maybe it is..

Nietzsche wrote:
That the value of the world lies in our interpretation (--that other interpretations than merely human ones are perhaps somewhere possible--); that previous interpretations have been perspective valuations by virtue of which we can survive in life, i.e., in the will to power, for the growth of power; that every elevation of man brings with it the overcoming of narrower interpretations; that every strengthening and increase of power opens up new perspectives and means believing in new horizons--this idea permeates my writings.

Lyssa wrote:
Phaidros in Pl. Smp. 179d is scornful of Orpheus, who according to the legend was not willing to die himself in order to be with his dead wife in the underworld; he was 'faint-hearted, as you'd expect of a kitharoidos'. Misgolas 's predilection for musicians may imply a distaste on his part for young athletes and warriors of the kind portrayed in earlier vase-painting

More of the same:

Quote :
In the model Phaedrus presents, it is erôs which “generates that extreme philia which leads to self-sacrifice” (Dover 1980 93).  It is clear that in this case Phaedrus envisions Alcestis as an erastês and Admetus as the object of her lover.  For a woman to be characterized in this way in classical Greek literature is highly unusual, and at the very least, aberrant ( women, like boys, were means to be objects, not subject of erôs).  According to Phaedrus’ argument, erôs is so powerful that it can motivate even women to perform extraordinary acts.

Orpheus is presented as a counterexample – he was not brave enough to die for his beloved and so the gods rejected his supplication.  Phaedrus then says it was Achilles who provided the greatest example of self-sacrifice motivated by love by dying for Patroclus.   Although Achilles’ divine mother Thetis had told him that his own death would follow soon after killing the Trojan Prince Hector, he still chose to avenge Patroclus by doing so, and in that sense sacrificed his life for him (179e).  Phaedrus believes that it was this act which led the gods to honor Achilles and send him to the μακάρων νῆσοι, the “Islands of the Blessed,” because for an erômenos to die for his erastês is an extraordinary thing.

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyThu Jan 16, 2014 6:07 pm

Lyssa wrote:


Quote :
"They wish to "cultivate" her in general still more, and intend, as they say, to make the "weaker sex" STRONG by culture: as if history did not teach in the most emphatic manner that the "cultivating" of mankind and his weakening--that is to say, the weakening, dissipating, and languishing of his FORCE OF WILL--have always kept pace with one another, and that the most powerful and influential women in the world (and lastly, the mother of Napoleon) had just to thank their force of will--and not their schoolmasters--for their power and ascendancy over men. That which inspires respect in woman, and often enough fear also, is her NATURE, which is more "natural" than that of man, her genuine, carnivora-like, cunning flexibility, her tiger-claws beneath the glove, her NAIVETE in egoism, her untrainableness and innate wildness, the incomprehensibleness, extent, and deviation of her desires and virtues.
That which, in spite of fear, excites one's sympathy for the dangerous and beautiful cat, "woman," is that she seems more afflicted, more vulnerable, more necessitous of love, and more condemned to disillusionment than any other creature. Fear and sympathy it is with these feelings that man has hitherto stood in the presence of woman, always with one foot already in tragedy, which rends while it delights--What? And all that is now to be at an end? And the DISENCHANTMENT of woman is in progress? The tediousness of woman is slowly evolving? Oh Europe! Europe! We know the horned animal which was always most attractive to thee, from which danger is ever again threatening thee! Thy old fable might once more become "history"--an immense stupidity might once again overmaster thee and carry thee away! And no God concealed beneath it--no! only an "idea," a "modern idea"!" [BGE, 239]

You could also compare her [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] nature to your earlier comment,

Perpetual wrote:
The male form arouses the feeling of temperance itself. It's more concrete, angular and statuesque in appearance. A woman's form seems more deceptive, necessarily, and arouses the most extreme emotions. Everything about a woman's form is meant to draw you in and spit you back out. It can be both the most intoxicating and most abject thing. A man's form is more reflective. A man's form build's to a peak and this is part of its beauty (short-lived as it may be). It would seem nihilistic to divorce philosophy from a love of physical beauty considering European beauty runs side by side with it.



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Hybrids... The Sphinx...


Beauty by Charles Baudelaire

"I AM as lovely as a dream in stone,
And this my heart where each finds death in turn,
Inspires the poet with a love as lone
As clay eternal and as taciturn.

Swan-white of heart, a sphinx no mortal knows,
My throne is in the heaven's azure deep;
I hate all movements that disturb my pose,
I smile not ever, neither do I weep.

Before my monumental attitudes,
That breathe a soul into the plastic arts,
My poets pray in austere studious moods,

For I, to fold enchantment round their hearts,
Have pools of light where beauty flames and dies,
The placid mirrors of my luminous eyes."

_________________
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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*
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Lyssa
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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptySun Jan 19, 2014 8:34 pm

Not cosmetic surgery, but 'aesthetic surgery':


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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*
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perpetualburn

perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyThu Jan 23, 2014 9:36 pm

Quote :
Nietzsche’s teaching of amor fati must be conceived as erotic affirmation.  The key to such an affirmation will be consummation, i.e., works not faith.  As eros, such affirmation has no part in the resignation endemic either to vulgar nihilism or to positivist determinism. Independently of one another, Howard Caygill and Tracy B. Strong have recently emphasised the secret to this teaching as what everyone, Nietzsche too, would call love.18 And yet the word of love alone is meaningless. As an erotic, Dionysian affirmation of life, Nietzschean  amor fati teaches an eros more demanding than agape and perhaps an eros even more impossible for the devotees of the cult of sexual distraction.19  Love, just love, or the idea of sex (the image of eros or pornog-raphy) is meaningless unless immediately, really affirmed in praxis, declared, enacted in what we do. Whatever one’s confessional standpoint on the ques-tion of faith and works, it is the working or the practice, that is: the act of love that counts in the real world.

Quote :
In a reading that is anything but anti-Christian, Nietzsche reads the life of
Jesus as “one of the most painful cases of the martyrdom of knowledge about love” (BGE 269 cf. 270).38  To negotiate the inadequacy of our human ability to love and the deiform infinity of desire (Cartesian, Augustinian “will”), Nietzsche dares an extraordinary question as he asks in a strained query poised within a painful series of reflections and therewith raises the hardest of ques-tions posed within and thus apart from all mockery or reproach, what it is that a god who comes to be the very God of love, would be condemned to know about love? What echoes in Nietzsche’s question here is a shattering sensi-tivity to the divine, forsaken and abandoned, a divine indigence. As the non-erotic god of love, the God of the Jews fell from nomadic jealousy and a thunder or sky-god’s vengeance to the cloying nuzzling of Christian need. Love becomes the supreme characteristic of God, thus, the need for love becomes the supreme passion, agony, or suffering of the divine. And because, this is the catch, the banal and ordinary run of humanity is anything but divine when it comes to the matter of passionate (that is the works of) love, human love has never deserved its name. Nevertheless, in the economy of seduction omni-present in eros, it will be this infinitesimal mite of human love which is to be transfigured as the measure of redemptive potential or salvation. Thus it seems – and this will be the key to Milton’s twist on the same Hesiodic eros, from Lucifer’s light to God’s deep blue sea, moving over the waters of Genesis – the somehow always embarassing sentiment of the 68 generation ideal that repeats in its enduring disappointment that the world needs love is a foregoing and foregone point of departure for Nietzsche and for every theogony and for every story of love

Quote :
What is telling is abundance, that is: potency or sovereign not slavish desire.
Immortalisation can be an apotheosis of flux and destruction can be the pre-condition for creation. Nietzsche’s consciousness of the tragic insight colors both the affirmative and the reactive dispositions of abundance and need. What-ever is replete with overflowing energy cannot be conserved – this is the economy of expenditure or expression: affirmation. The will to power that is a capacity for expression can only be given out without reserve.52 In contrast with art, knowledge merely seeks to tell itself a story: justifying and enduring its own impotence. Thus Nietzsche speaks of the gap between “know” and “can” (BGE 253) and suggests that what can act must perhaps exclude knowledge. The will lacking power is the will to power that does (and can do) nothing but conserve itself in the power it lacks, already played out, already without reserve. The difference is between the will to expend and the will to save. If no one can spend more than one has, expenditure remains the point at issue. In any case: in the economic dynamic of life as erotic love, power can only be kept if it is continually spent, lost, given out. This is the energetics of eros, the erotic dy-namic, as it is an exact economy of discharge. It is the impotence of fear which cannot imagine and can never believe that such power, such great health, “one does not merely have, but also acquires continually, and must acquire because one gives it up again and again, and must give it up” (GS 382). The course of desire sacrificed is the eternal return of the same.


Quote :
At the same moment and drawn into the same breath with which Nietzische teaches love of life, he underscores every last reason for despair, frustration, impossible desire. This is the tragic condition of life, where life always “pre-supposes suffering and sufferers.” What is transformed in the possibility of love is the disposition of suffering, a transformation as rare as that same (impossible) possibility. Only lovers fully alive to everything in life means those arched not with right feeling but by what I have deliberately been calling ‘wrong feeling,’ commanded by eros beyond themselves (not in imaginative projection) but exactly incarnate in what and how they are. Lov-ers, bodily, physically representing ‘the over-fullness of life,’ are able to de- sire the Dionysian, wholly erotic art Nietzsche consecrates as presupposing “a tragic view of life, a tragic insight.” As an erotically charged being, the lover, precisely ecstatic, can “not only afford the sight of the terrible and questionable” as a spectacle to be admired at an aesthetic distance, but such a ‘Dionysian god and man” can also face the actuality of the “terrible deed and every luxury of destruction” (GS 370)

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perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptySun Jan 26, 2014 4:40 pm

Quote :
To get the young men to risk their lives in the hoplite line, the poet uses a visual
aesthetic of death, preferring the beauty of one corpse over another. An
older man who has fallen is ugly: the spectacle of his white head and grey
chin while he gasps his life out onto the sand, skin stripped naked, “holding
his bloody private parts with his own two hands,” is “ugly [aischron] to the
eyes and nemesis to see.”27 By contrast, the blossom of a youthful soldier
arouses eros in his onlookers even after he is dead (10.29–30):

To males [he is] worth gazing at; to females, lovely [eratos]
while alive, and a beauty after falling in the front ranks.

Pericles’ Funeral Oration may be said to borrow this trope from Tyrtaeus’
or related poetry: the tradition of the beautiful death.28 The ones who died
perceived that it was better to go out on top, to slip away while still at the
peak of their powers (meta romes, 2.43.6), having performed the deed that
constitutes the height of their reputation (akme tes doxes, 2.42.4), than to
outlive their prime and to be remembered as something less than they once
were. It is as if a young man had the opportunity to step into eternity, into
memory, at the moment of his own choosing, an act by which he could
make of his life exactly what he wanted, or at least what he had been taught
to want. In one stroke he makes up for all faults, as Pericles says (2.42.3), or
he simply “becomes good,” as Tyrtaeus says (12.10, 12.20West). The young
men are ripe for death and memory the way maidens are ripe for marriage;
the season is now.29

It is not so much that the young men fall in love with death as that
death is the means by which they can make the community “fall in love”
with them, or at least appreciate or esteem them. The young men seek
to become attractive; they desire to be desirable. By risking, and receiving,
death, the young citizen–soldier seeks to awaken a yearning on the part
of the community, a yearning for himself. Callinus expresses it as a laoi
sumpanti pothos (1.18West), a longing that the whole community experiences.
Because pothos is a regret or longing for things absent, early death is almost
a necessity if one is to achieve this honor; one who dies at home of old age
is simply not of equal value and cannot be missed (demoi potheinos, 14–16) in
the same way. This desire to be desirable oneself, as opposed to desiring
another person, is not eros simpliciter but a vanity or eros mixed with
thumos. The most erotic description of vanity is “a desire for a desire.”30
We may first feel eros for another person, and then, in order to be erotically
successful, a desire to be loved back. The desire to be loved back would then
be purely instrumental or utilitarian. But the desire to be loved back may
also have a life of its own, as the thumos itself does. We recognize the merit
or beauty in others that provokes our eros, and we covet those qualities
for ourselves. The aim of this desire is not physical gratification but the
inculcation of a positive idea about ourselves in the mind of another, in
short, honor.

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hǣþen
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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Jan 29, 2014 12:53 pm

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Lest we forget that they were once/are an Indo-European people. I'm not sure how factual the video link in the link is.
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perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyTue Feb 04, 2014 9:02 pm

"Ambiguus Sexus: Epic Masculinity in Transition in Statius' Achilleid"

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Feb 05, 2014 12:20 pm

"Homosexuality & Civilization"

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptySun Feb 09, 2014 1:52 pm

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_________________
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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*
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perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyMon Feb 10, 2014 5:32 pm

Beauty as potentially ensnaring, beauty as instigator, imposing itself on your will …a beautiful landscape, a perfect day, perfect light, you get to a place where you can really appreciate on a very fine, distinguished rare level, you could almost die in that hard won exalted moment(you are separate from the crowd and that must mean something), but at it’s at that very moment that you feel ever more active to give back, or rather push back…doesn’t even seem like paying back for the gift of beauty as much as the intensity of the moment hits the very nerve for self-determination. Time matters most now, life isn’t just about getting to high places of appreciation and dissection…the awe of beauty in a individual might be the very point of an active/destructive/creative tenacity. The surge of beauty from outside (that intense moment of awe) produces an immediate surge (almost anger) in your will to over power any external effect that might glaze over a desire for clarity or continued active domination and organization. Beauty itself is competitive; it’s why it’s confident, why it’s noble. To be lost in beauty is to be lost from your self, to be undistinguished. Yet beauty is the distinguishing characteristic of higher types.

Beauty felt isn’t just something to be observed but recruited, put into service of your will, taken advantage of, worked with. It almost demands it be taken advantage of like a woman, that’s why it’s there. Appreciation becomes the deadly deception… Getting to comfortable places (economically or spiritually), to relax and appreciate and feign an aristocratic outlook as anti-heroic…having the time to analyze without vitality or pressing immediacy.


Watching a women dance from a distance as she entrances onlookers (has not just a visual but visceral effect(but its effect is turned inward)…Confidence/desire/competition first appears to close distance(between you and dancer and you from competitors)

Actual dancing/leading with a women (heat felt up-close (taken advantaged of, you’re leading), distance closed further (apparently, more confidently) tension higher (touching).

Sexual intercourse, greatest heat transfer, the penetration of illusion(confidence higher) only opens up the most visceral illusion, the seeming act of destroying the illusion by closing distance, cutting the tension only opens up more tension/distance…Nakedness not as a killer of illusion but, as it turns out, the most desired “illusion”, the most immediate yet faraway, the most uncooperative illusion, the wild horse. The act of overwhelming her and being overwhelmed by her reactions, stronger feedback of the flesh vs the action of touching in dancing, vs the overwhelming (passive) effect of the dancer on the onlooker where to overwhelm (active) is directly purely inward… no longer tempted at a distant illusion and re-tempting yourself, but re-tempted by the flesh, a naked flesh that re-tempts the illusion with greater intensity. Flesh as a burning illusion, a burning need for action.

Sex as either a potential killer of inspiration (sexual energy) or re-charging of energy that may rival energy obtained from abstinence... affirmation of seemingly abject in moment of loss/gain (confidence highest). Possibility of the sublimated erotic and sensual. The sexual as something playful and deadly serious.


The temptation of man for woman, woman for man
The difference in the love gambit for each
The difference in how different sexual energy is organized/ordered to types of possibly mutual beneficial heights, differences in reciprocity, mutual support(different ways of supporting) shared goals(different ways of approaching, understood by each for each) but never dull, the love/need of antagonism, cooperation isn’t an end in itself


Necessity of absorption in the masculine and feminine for each

The difference in the speed/intensity of shifting between masculine/feminine roles in a woman vs a man(based on vitality/intelligence/biological destiny) and the relation this has on how man/woman approach interaction with the opposite sex, how he/she orders himself around the other… the heroic impulse potentially rejuvenated or destroyed in gender analysis… possible feminist interpretation of female reciprocation that supports a masculine heroism as misogynist, or belittling of possible female potential… female gender shifting as possibly less intense/capable of putting herself in man’s role… male gender shifting that doesn’t swell into a heroism after intense oscillation/re-coordination as effeminate , drawn out weekend warrior type approach to gender shifting in a male that doesn’t care/consider worthwhile the biological peak of a male, “analysis can go on forever with no matter to vitality or health, that’s all that matters…Nietzsche got old and remained young/vital(his peculiar biology doesn’t matter) what matter is it to me then to not consider a time-honored male peak”

woman’s responsibility towards man, man’s responsibility to woman, gravity felt by each in determining not the least of all, character
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perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyThu Feb 13, 2014 6:23 pm

Quote :
"In the “Before Sunrise” passage of Zarathustra 3, Nietzsche sings his hymn or love-song to an Eos who is clearly figurative and “rhetorical” yet also somehow actual in her striking beauty, her immediacy, momentary presence, transience:

O heaven above me, pure and deep! You abyss of light! [Oh Himmel über mir, du Reiner! Tiefer! Du Licht-Abgrund!] Seeing you, I tremble with godlike desires. To throw myself into your height, that is my depth. To hide in your purity, that is my innocence. . . . Today you rose for me silently over the roaring sea . . . and came to me . . . shrouded in your beauty. . . . Before the sun you came to me, the loneliest of all. . . . Rather would I sit . . . in the abyss without a heaven, than see you . . . stained by drifting clouds. . . . O heaven over me, pure and light! You abyss of light! . . . “Over all things now stand the heaven Accident [der Himmel Zufall], the heaven Innocence [Unschuld], the heaven Chance [Ohngefähr], the heaven Prankishness [Übermuth].” This prankish folly I have put in the place of . . . “eternal will”. . . . That is what your purity is to me now, that there is no eternal spider or spider web of reason; that you are to me a dance floor for divine accidents, that you are to me a divine table for divine dice and dice players. But you blush? Did I speak the unspeakable? . . . Or is it the shame of twosomeness that makes you blush? Do you bid me go and be silent because the day is coming now? The world is deep—and deeper than day had ever been  aware. . . . But the day is coming, so let us part. (“Vor Sonnen-Aufgang,” KSA.24 207-210; “Before Sunrise,” Kaufmann 276-279)

In this ode to the ethereal abyss of light that is the clear cloudless sky at dawn, Nietzsche catches the mythic and “romantic” aspect of Lady Dawn, this young goddess who seduced several young male mortals, including Tithonos and Orion, the handsome hunter who upon his death became the brightest constellation in the night sky. For “Seeing you, I tremble with godlike desires [Dich schauend schaudere ich vor göttlichen Begierden].” In effect Nietzsche (or his speaker, Zarathustra) has replaced Tithonos here as the male consort and lover of Eos. Yet obviously this all-too-human speaker—like Quixote riding out on his first adventure and looking up at this lady who has deserted “the soft couch of her jealous spouse” and now appears “to mortals at the gates and balconies of the Manchegan horizon” (Cervantes 30)—is not lying beside Dawn on her horizon-couch but rather gazing up at her in wonder from the earthly world of mortal men.

The “oneness” (not “twosomeness”) and “purity” of this Dawn may suggest her virginity, self-enclosure, loneliness (“the loneliest of all”) and shyness—“is it the shame of twosomeness that makes you blush?”—but this is a purity in which the (equally shy?) speaker also wants, through a powerful inversion, to “hide himself.” Of course, if he could really hide within her or even become her then there would still be no problem of (romantic) twosomeness, but Dawn (he imagines) bids him “go and be silent because the Day is coming now”—perhaps because his presence (so far hidden by the dark) would become clear to her, and/or because Eos is “ashamed” of the fact that she must lose the singularity she possesses, at this transient moment or “event” of the dawn (the “dawning”), once she transforms into Hemera (Day) in her journey toward the top of the sky.

Perhaps Nietzsche is seeking here the metaphysical essence of the dawn, of this natural phenomenon so beautiful and so pure and so momentary that it becomes an “abyss of light”—a shocking reversal or (down-up) inversion of the earth-abyss which is in itself the singularity that he seeks. The senses of Accident (Zufall), Chance (Ohngefähr), and Prankishness (Übermuth, “over-spirit,” playfulness) that Nietzsche correlates here with “heaven over me, pure and light,” that is, with the Dawn would need to be, in any case, interpreted in terms of both a human-cosmic (or human- cosmogonic) inversion and a human-cosmic singularity or identity. As for Chance (a term into which one may perhaps assimilate “Accident”) we think again of the momentary transience of dawn, the actual moment or event (Gefähr could suggest “event”) of night-becoming day. Thus we think of the day/night or earth/sky gap, difference, “horizon” from whose doubleness (as horizontality and verticality) Dawn now arises (differentiates herself) as pure verticality and pure singularity. If we also think of Dawn as Chance in her move out of and up from her horizontal couch where she is coupled with Tithonos, it is the singular chance of her sudden appearance at daybreak that draws to her the male speaker standing far below. Yet the singularity of the rising Dawn may also imply, as with the Aither of Hesiodic and Orphic myth, a neuter gender, whereas when embedded with Tithonos she obviously had a feminine one; perhaps it is within both her (its) neutrality and singularity that the speaker wishes to “hide himself.”

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptySat Feb 15, 2014 6:32 pm



Difference in music


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perpetualburn

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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptySat Feb 15, 2014 8:51 pm

Quote :
Beauty in art is inextricably entwined with this uniqueness or
originality. Hölderlin writes, “For me, originality is intensity [Innigkeit],
depth of heart and spirit” (DKV II: 255). Thus we see why Hyperion
has to irritate us, scandalize us, with his contradictions, aberrations,
his strength and weakness, his love and wrath, his mourning. Herein
lies his intensity, his originality, the sign of all his striving and his
mortality
– herein shines his beauty. For the Beautiful shines only in
the glory of its transience. So it appears in the strivings of the hero like
Achilles: “[T]he most transient bloom in the world of heroes, ‘thus
born to live only a short time’ according to Homer, precisely because
he is so beautiful” (DKV II:510). In this way, Hölderlin transforms all
heroes into tragic heroes.

Thus the age of Philia cannot be a static, Edenic state of perfection.
Such perfection has nothing to gain or lose, no fetters to struggle
against, nothing that would move it. Rather, it is a perfection that, at
the brink of its boundary and form, sounds its own demise. This idea
can also be connected with the death and earthbound tendencies of
the gods. Mortality, then, is the very condition for love. In being-moved
and moving simultaneously, love marks and tells us of time.
Both love and time are known in passing, in the movement of the
moment: in downfall and becoming. And yes, even the gods must
reckon with this when, like Zeus, they fall for a mortal. Hölderlin will
say this much later, when, in the context of his translation of Antigone,
he speaks of Niobe’s relation to Zeus:

"She counted for the Father of Time
The sounding of the hours, the golden."

Dionysus is the ‘Guest Yet to Come’ at the celebration of Aphrodite’s
birth. He is anticipated in the crucial element, the nectar bringing
about the mixis, the “mingling” between the unlikely pair, Poros and
Penia, from which love and the world of beauty arise for mortals.
Without faithful observance of the god, Poros and Penia perpetually
encircle each other, never crossing paths under the arbor resplendent
with the promise of that golden fruit. Rather, Penury goads Resource
to use its cunning to possess the fruit in any which way it can, and
Resources’ repeated attempts create an illusion of wealth that serves
merely to disguise an ever growing abyss of poverty.


With only cunning and penury in our hearts, any love or gratitude
shrivels up altogether in that garden. And yet, as Hölderlin himself
points out, even in reflecting upon the beloved, it seems we always
come up short on love. We are beggars when we reflect. Love must
love even more if it is ever going to approximate the beauty and
transience of the beloved – or the infinite debt of gratitude owed the
beloved for giving the lover life. Thus the need for a more daring love
and gratitude, like the kind of tribute only possible when intoxicated
by the dream of the beloved. In the dream we become gods. Such a
Dionysian dream suspends the human being’s impoverished resourcefulness
so that from the divine fusion and confusion he inspires,
Resource and Poverty may be fruitful and create an erotic bind that
ushers in an authentic relation to time and the age.

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Lyssa
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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptySat Feb 22, 2014 6:28 pm

perpetualburn wrote:
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Thanks for that link.

More on the relation between the feminine and mobility:
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_________________
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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*
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Lyssa
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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Feb 26, 2014 7:01 am

Quote :
In a previous post, I discussed the similarities between Baudelaire’s conception of the unattainable ideal in To A Passerby, and Swinburne’s narration of the Rudel story in The Triumph of Time. Yesterday, while thumbing through my copy of Fleurs du Mal, I perceived what I think to be another affinity between the two poets: a similarly contradiction-laden view of the intertwined concepts of beauty and love.

That there do exist contradictions in the very nature of these concepts is nothing new. It has been a common theme for poets through the ages. As far back as the Greek lyric age, Anacreon wrote:

I love and yet I do not love,
I am out of my mind - and I am not out of my mind. (fr46)

Most famously, perhaps, the Roman poet Catullus:

I hate and I love. Why would I do this, perhaps you ask?                                                                                                        I do not know, but I realize it happens and I am tormented. (Catullus 85)

And, of course, the troubadours:

I never held it but it holds me
all the time in its bail, Love,
and makes me glad in anger, fool in wisdom (Arnaut Daniel)

And the idea perhaps reached its apotheosis with the romantics. But what, I think, is crucial to note here is that the contradictions are, in virtually all cases, mirror images of each other (something that becomes clear on a close reading of the chiasmus in each of the lines). Furthermore, all these are examples of what Parry, in his article on Virgil, calls “the sublimation of sorrow”: that is, the so-called negative emotions that love and beauty evoke – hatred, madness, the absence of self-control, rage, foolishness – are, in a certain sense, every bit as high, pure, beautiful and noble (“sublime) as their opposites. If there is pain, then it is, in its own way, as glorious and uplifting as joy, it is, in a sense, to be as much desired as joy - and both joy and pain are two integral parts of the complete and fulfilled experience.

So far, so romantic. But the fascinating thing about Baudelaire and Swinburne is how, in their poetry, they emphatically reject this entire tradition of love-and-beauty versification, and focus upon a very different kind of contradiction. Let’s start with Baudelaire’s L’Ideal (Aggeler translation):

It will never be the beauties that vignettes show,
Those damaged products of a good-for-nothing age,
Their feet shod with high shoes, hands holding castanets,
Who can ever satisfy any heart like mine.

I leave to Gavarni, poet of chlorosis,
His prattling troop of consumptive beauties,
For I cannot find among those pale roses
A flower that is like my red ideal.

The real need of my heart, profound as an abyss,
Is you, Lady Macbeth, soul so potent in crime,
The dream of Aeschylus, born in the land of storms;

Or you, great Night, daughter of Michelangelo,
Who calmly contort, reclining in a strange pose
Your charms molded by the mouths of Titans.

This piece has the first hints of what later poems make explicit: namely that, in its entirety, beauty has an aspect that resists sublimation, that isn’t simply a reflection of pure virtues. “Profound as an abyss“, “soul so potent in crime“, “… contort, reclining in a strange pose…” – all these bear not only clear suggestions of an unabashedly carnal yearning, but also an essence that escapes a simple division into opposites (love and hate, foolishness and wisdom, and so on). And it is impossible, on reading this, especially the lines about Lady Macbeth and crime, to not be reminded of these lines from Swinburne’s Dolores:

Seven sorrows the priests give their Virgin;
But thy sins, which are seventy times seven,
Seven ages would fail thee to purge in,
And then they would haunt thee in heaven:
Fierce midnights and famishing morrows,
And the loves that complete and control
All the joys of the flesh, all the sorrows
               That wear out the soul.

In Baudelaire, this theme becomes even more explicit in Hymn to Beauty:

Do you come from Heaven or rise from the abyss,
Beauty? Your gaze, divine and infernal,
Pours out confusedly benevolence and crime,
And one may for that, compare you to wine.

You contain in your eyes the sunset and the dawn;
You scatter perfumes like a stormy night;
Your kisses are a philtre, your mouth an amphora,
Which make the hero weak and the child courageous.

Do you come from the stars or rise from the black pit?
Destiny, bewitched, follows your skirts like a dog;
You sow at random joy and disaster,
And you govern all things but answer for nothing.

You walk upon corpses which you mock, O Beauty!
Of your jewels Horror is not the least charming,
And Murder, among your dearest trinkets,
Dances amorously upon your proud belly.

The dazzled moth flies toward you, O candle!
Crepitates, flames and says: “Blessed be this flambeau!”
The panting lover bending o’er his fair one
Looks like a dying man caressing his own tomb,

Whether you come from heaven or from hell, who cares,
O Beauty! Huge, fearful, ingenuous monster!
If your regard, your smile, your foot, open for me
An Infinite I love but have not ever known?

From God or Satan, who cares? Angel or Siren,
Who cares, if you make, — fay with the velvet eyes,
Rhythm, perfume, glimmer; my one and only queen!
The world less hideous, the minutes less leaden?

There are a number of different things at work, I think, in this poem. First, notice his use of the chiasmus, as compared to the example of the lyric poets. Some of them – “joy and disaster”, “governing all things, but answering for nothing” – would not be out of place in the latter – but the rest certainly would be. “Heaven and abyss”, “divine and infernal”, “benevolence and crime”, “stars and the black pit” – none of these, I think, are the images of romanticism – quite the contrary. They suggest, again, an aspect that is the very opposite of purity and sublimity, that is almost… repulsive. That brings me to the second point – the feeling of repulsion – although not very strong just yet – is reinforced by the words he appends to describe Beauty: “horror”, “murder” and “monster” cannot, by any stretch of the imagination, be sublimated in the same way that “madness” or “foolishness” or “pain” can. And this – the third point – in turn, is reinforced by his personification of Beauty – or rather, the personification of two body parts that are decidedly anti-romanticist: the “proud belly” (upon which murder is dancing “amorously”) and the foot.

There is, again, something decidedly similar in the Swinburne’s fervent declamations in Dolores:

Fruits fail and love dies and time ranges;
Thou art fed with perpetual breath,
And alive after infinite changes,
And fresh from the kisses of death;
Of languors rekindled and rallied,
Of barren delights and unclean,
Things monstrous and fruitless, a pallid
              And poisonous queen.

By the hunger of change and emotion,
By the thirst of unbearable things,
By despair, the twin-born of devotion,
By the pleasure that winces and stings,
The delight that consumes the desire,
The desire that outruns the delight,
By the cruelty deaf as a fire
              And blind as the night.

As for Baudelaire, the repulsion finally becomes unambiguous and express in this single line the final quatrain of I Adore you as much as the Nocturnal Vault:

I advance to attack, and I climb to assault,
Like a swarm of maggots after a cadaver,
And I cherish, implacable and cruel beast,
Even that coldness which makes you more beautiful.

This is a truly extraordinary image. Moths and flames is part of the standard imagery of love; but who would ever describe the pursuit as a swarm of maggots chasing after a cadaver? And that is not all: Baudelaire has a complete poem that is called, unsurprisingly, The Carcass:

My love, do you recall the object which we saw,
That fair, sweet, summer morn!
At a turn in the path a foul carcass
On a gravel strewn bed,

Its legs raised in the air, like a lustful woman,
Burning and dripping with poisons,
Displayed in a shameless, nonchalant way
Its belly, swollen with gases.

The sun shone down upon that putrescence,
As if to roast it to a turn,
And to give back a hundredfold to great Nature
The elements she had combined;

And the sky was watching that superb cadaver
Blossom like a flower.
So frightful was the stench that you believed
You’d faint away upon the grass.

The blow-flies were buzzing round that putrid belly,
From which came forth black battalions
Of maggots, which oozed out like a heavy liquid
All along those living tatters.

All this was descending and rising like a wave,
Or poured out with a crackling sound;
One would have said the body, swollen with a vague breath,
Lived by multiplication.

And this world gave forth singular music,
Like running water or the wind,
Or the grain that winnowers with a rhythmic motion
Shake in their winnowing baskets.

The forms disappeared and were no more than a dream,
A sketch that slowly falls
Upon the forgotten canvas, that the artist
Completes from memory alone.

Crouched behind the boulders, an anxious dog
Watched us with angry eye,
Waiting for the moment to take back from the carcass
The morsel he had left.

— And yet you will be like this corruption,
Like this horrible infection,
Star of my eyes, sunlight of my being,
You, my angel and my passion!

Yes! thus will you be, queen of the Graces,
After the last sacraments,
When you go beneath grass and luxuriant flowers,
To molder among the bones of the dead.

Then, O my beauty! say to the worms who will
Devour you with kisses,
That I have kept the form and the divine essence
Of my decomposed love!

I don’t think I need to say anything about this poem – it speaks for itself, far more eloquently than any critic ever could. The imagery is stark and brutal. Swinburne never goes quite this far, but he does have a stanza that is vaguely suggestive of the same idea, along with the use of the words “corpses” and “barren”:

For the crown of our life as it closes
Is darkness, the fruit thereof dust;
No thorns go as deep as a rose’s,
And love is more cruel than lust.
Time turns the old days to derision,
Our loves into corpses or wives;
And marriage and death and division
              Make barren our lives.

While highlighting the similarity between the two, I think it is also important to note that they come from very different places. Yes, both Swinburne and Baudelaire reject the romanticist conception of love as feeble, withered, incomplete, pale. But Swinburne’s poetry, as is especially evident from Hymn to Proserpine and The Last Oracle is full of anger against Christianity, which he believes has diluted and watered down real life to an unacceptable extent (“the pale god’s kingdom come“) through its emphasis on abnegnation, on a weak morality, on sinning and forgiveness, and so on. Dolores can also be read, perhaps best, as an attack on stifling Victorian morality (recall that the press in his day castigated Swinburne as “that libidinous laureate of a pack of satyrs“), and that’s why, much of the focus of Dolores is on uncontrolled and uncontrollable passion. On the other hand, one of the points that Walter Benjamin makes in his book on Baudelaire, or at least, so I gathered, is that Baudelaire was writing lyric poetry but was also, first and foremost, a poet of the city, the city and the arcades of mid-19th century Paris. This essentially is one of the causes of the seeming tension in his work, between lyric form and style and themes, and subjects and images that are entirely alien to traditional lyric poetry (the situation is somewhat similar to Byron’s Don Juan).

Nonetheless, I love to read both Swinburne and Baudelaire for precisely this reason: they fly to where other great poets fear to tread, make prey where others dare not perch, exploring the ugly and repulsive side of love and beauty to its very depths, and coming up with a very different kind of paradox: that it is precisely that ugliness and repulsiveness that is alluring, without which the experience would be, in a sense, only partial. That a decaying and putrefying corpse can nonetheless be possessed of a strange and inexplicable enchantment of its own, a kind of horrifying fascination that can’t just be rendered sterile by simply making it, like I said before, a straightforward mirror of the straightforward pleasures and joys of love and beauty that have, by now, become almost quotidian.

And lastly, the difference between Baudelaire/Swinburne and the great romantics comes out beautifully, I think, in this instance, where Baudelaire and Keats invoke precisely the same image in radically different ways. Consider:

Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art —
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
Like Nature’s patient, sleepless Eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task… (Keats, Bright Star)

For Keats, the image of the star suggests steadfastness, loyalty, beauty, splendour, eternity. But Baudelaire, in one his poems (which I have, at the moment, shamefully forgotten) finds in that same image simply the suggestion that the star, hung up in isolation in the sky, will burn for all time in utter pointlessness. It is two great poets simply looking at the world in radically different ways, and perhaps, both philosophies have something to recommend themselves.

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*
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Lyssa
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Lyssa

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Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptySat Mar 08, 2014 6:59 pm

Just the sight of someone's face can excite us, uplift us, liberate us, depress us; the face is the very soul of a person... Plato believed beauty that touches us, is that which pulls us back from our self-oblivion, our lethe...

Whatever else that occurs is another matter, and mental dialectics..., but I believe we "connect" with some people almost involuntarily because of some kind of Re- cognition...   a re- Awareness of self.


Sloterdijk wrote:
""The elevation of the profane face to portrait-worthy status is itself a very late and precarious operation in the interfacial space, and cannot manifest itself as such in any one portrait. Portrait art, as a protracting procedure that emphasizes  or draws out individuality, is part of a comprehensive face-producing movement that, beyond all art- and image-historical manifestations, possesses genre-historical status. The possibility of facility is connected to the process of anthropogenesis itself.

It is not the portrait that enables the face to be highlighted to the point of recognizability; rather, it is protraction that elevates faces to the threshold of portray ability in an open-ended facio-genetic process. Protraction is the clearing of being in the face; it invites us to conceive of the history of being as a somatic event. The opening up of the face - even more than cerebralization and the creation of the hand - enabled people to become animals open to the world, or, more significantly, to their fellow humans.

…It is sufficient to call to mind that human faces have pulled themselves out of their animal form simply by looking at one another, so to speak, in the course of a long-term evolutionary drama.

…That means: this turning of faces towards other faces among humans became face-creating and face-opening, because the welcome qualities of faces for the eyes of the potential sexual partner inform genetic processes via selection-effective preferences. One could thus say that in a certain sense, human faces produce one another; they blossom within an oscillatory circuit of luxuriant reciprocal opening.

…To gain an idea of the affective temperatures in the horde hothouses of early history, it is sufficient to recall how, throughout our species, many adult women - as well as those men capable of paternal feelings - are still delighted by the beautiful faces of babies and infants. What requires explanation about this spontaneous inclination to adopt a charmed and friendly posture towards children's faces is not its universality, but rather its occasional absence among individuals who, through specializations of affectivity or emotional barriers are excluded from the tender microclimate that normally ensues spontaneously between adult and infant faces. …There must have been high evolutionary prizes attached over long periods to the production of facial profiles that were more delicate, more open, more delightful and more capable of joy.

…Increasing the attractiveness of humans for humans, however, is the opposite of environmental adaptation in the sense of improving fitness: it shows the early tendency of evolution towards free flower formation in the erotic-aesthetic hothouse of humanization.

…The major groups of the sapiens family are probably separated by divergent ethno-aesthetics; hence there is no guarantee that all of them would appeal sensually to all others. But al those specific and singular aspects noted in the face as character traits, or as letters and lines of regional temperaments and acquired qualities, can only enter the facial slate once this latter has been opened up, through protraction, as a clearing for physiognomic entries and fortuitous properties. The most accurate illustration of this protraction's modus operandi is the reciprocal, delicately enlivened radiance of the mother's and the child's faces in the period of postnatal bonding. Its back-and-forth motion is rooted in old tribal-historical synchronizations between the protagonists in primal-scenic games of affection; ut belongs to an ensemble of inborn schemata for careful bipersonal participation.

…The question of the face as proof of identity would not have become significant until the formations of peoples in the early classical period, he time in which human groups were exceeding their critical size for the first time and having to develop new means of cognitive orientation in an environment of mostly unrelated, unknown people. From this point on, the eyes of humans within peoples became attuned to reading faces with a view to taking family resemblances and individual character traits. The eyes of earlier humans would have lacked this combination of facial curiosity and identificatory interest entirely; their concern for the faces of the others must largely have been of a bio-aesthetic nature.

…The absence of faces from the oldest pictures only proves one thing unequivocally, however: the concern for the faces of the others belongs in an area that neither permits nor demands representation. The early interfacial perceptions are not interested in meanings and character traits, but in qualities of familiarity and cheer; they are geared towards facial light. Mothers and children do not paint each other; they beam at each other. Evolution and its heightened form in anthropological self-breeding have evidently rewarded facial formations that portray the ability to express joy. Just as the genitals are the organic creations of an inter-genital pleasure principle, human faces are the expressive forms of an interfacial joy principle. Facial magic has a clear formula: the original separation of joy. This is what made the accommodation of faces by other faces a fundamental possibility in the human field. The reference in Phaedrus to the "godlike face" contains the first attempt in philosophical thought to approach protractive facial resonance as a point of content with happiness." [Spheres]


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A woman ought to be the embodiment of wisdom,, just the sight of her must set you free... suffuse you with power.

Evola wrote:
"Dante goes on to say: In his arms methought I saw one sleeping, naked, save that she seemed to me wrapped lightly in a crimson drapery; whom gazing at very intently, I knew to be the lady of the salutation, who the day before had deigned to salute me. And in one of his hands methought he held a thing that was all aflame; and methought he said to me these words: Vide Cor tuum [Behold thy heart!]."
The woman's "salutation," in the literature of the Worshipers of Love, has a coded meaning based on the double meaning of the terms salutation and salvation. It is said: "Let him who merits not salvation [liberation], never hope to have her company [Beatrice's or the woman's]" (8:54). The woman who extends the salutation is the same woman who bestows salvation, or better, who propitiates a crisis and an experience that leads to salvation. Thus Dante speaks of the effects of a salutation, that often go far beyond his own strength. After all, the sight of the woman almost causes one to die. Dante says about this: "I have set my feet in that region of life beyond which one cannot go with intent to return" (14:41). And more specifically: "And whoso should endure to stay and behold her, would become a noble thing or else would die: and when she findeth one worthy to behold her, he proveth her virtue; for this befalleth him, that she giveth him salutation." [Yoga of Power]

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"ἐδιζησάμην ἐμεωυτόν." [Heraclitus]

"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

*Become clean, my friends.*


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perpetualburn

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Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyThu Mar 20, 2014 1:53 am

Lyssa wrote:
I think you can only afford to possess this kind of "patient impatience" or ruthless "concern" with things that "no longer concern you", if you already have a premonition of what you desire; and that's how it makes sense, when N. writes


Jung wrote:
This fourth stage is the anticipation of the lapis. The imaginative activity of the fourth function--intuition, without which no realization is complete--is plainly evident in this anticipation of a possibility whose fulfilment could never be the object of empirical experience at all; already in Greek alchemy it was called "the stone that is no stone." Intuition gives outlook and insight; it revels in the garden of magical possibilities as if they were real. Nothing is more charged with intuitions than the lapis philosophorum. This keystone rounds off the work into an experience of the totality of the individual.
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PostSubject: Re: Beauty, Art and Appearance Beauty, Art and Appearance - Page 2 EmptyWed Mar 26, 2014 5:56 pm

Quote :
European variants of this same bharaivi principle can be found in the
grim depictions of feminine divinity that haunt ancient Nordic religion. The
great modern scholar of Northern mythology, Hilda Ellis Davidson,
describes the Valkyries, or waelcyrge ,"the choosers of the slain", in a very
different light than the familiar Romantic vision of neatly coiffed, blondbraided
beauties sporting quaint helmets. Davidson paints a grim picture of
the wild-haired Valkyries haunting the gore-drenched battlefields after
combat "weaving on a ghastly loom composed of weapons, entrails and
skulls." The similarity to Kali is striking.

Lyn Webster Wilde, in her study On The Trail Of The Women
Warriors provides us with an astute description of Shakti from a feminine
point of view:

"Shakti ... evokes a sense of this power that is at once erotic, inexhaustible,
captivating, terrifying, sensual, annihilating – the divine female in action ...
it is an active power, and you can see it very clearly in the figurines of the
snake-goddesses of Crete, or the dancing Parvati statues in your local Indian
restaurant. It is not the fecund, sleepy, peaceful earth-mother energy beloved
of sentimental goddess-worshippers. It is the bright, burning, vital power of
the archetypical feminine, whether expressed in divine or human form."

Quote :
there is a vast difference between the good soldier who follows orders as a servant of the state and the left-hand path Warrior, who fights for his or her own illumination.

into-thedarkness.tripod.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/demonsoftheflesh.pdf

The most beautiful dreams of mine involve the meeting of a woman and the radiant light and burning sensation that permeates the experience.   It’s a burning yet not burning, or rather the encounter with a gentle warmth profound enough burn.  The meeting is a closing of distance between me and her.  As distance closes, I experience an intensification of heat/burning that seems internally growing (but it’s not just internal)… the whole scene is heated… The burning is simultaneously being accompanied by a transforming, highly sensual radiant (light) vision of her form.  So a double-movement of heat and changing image, where the synergy of the process seems to impress tremendous meaning (or truth) on me… It’s as if I’m witness and apart of the activity of activity.  Her form lends itself to the playfulness of light.  The feeling of the impression is so strong that nothing else seems to matter (what does philosophy matter in the presence of a woman).  It’s the feeling of being found in transformation…Not a feeling of losing yourself but gaining yourself...a feeling so strong it demands attention and vivisection but never allows itself to be emptied of its demanding nature… a feeling strong enough to die for always without hesitation, but whose living nature necessitates hesitation, care, and continuous assertion… The relationship between you and the active, charged transforming image of her(her form) goes beyond mere fantasy… it carries itself as a burning reserve of energy into waking life… It’s as if you are carrying the source and potential for transformation itself…it’s a fated feeling… it isn’t just a passing feeling… It’s a feeling whereby all fading is mercilessly fought back…the feminine as the battleground for the assertion of images…


In a way, his body becomes a template for experimentation but isn’t her form the “light” that illuminates the process of experimentation (the “torch light…to loftier paths” (in the maze of experimentation))…his form becomes amplified (he becomes radiant himself) in the playful/serious antagonism with her form(her light…or how her form re-presents light)… i.e., his form is re-worked by way of her form…And doesn’t she delight basking in the light of her creation… isn’t there so much light reaching out from the abysmal depth of his creating.   And isn’t the reaching of life expressed best in the male form of striking balance?

Not to be deprived of light even in the dark(and never to leave her deprived), he weds the moon and becomes one of her creatures of the night , always seeking darker places and finding brighter light where nothing can hide, the sun becomes the day’s fading glory… until it rises again

The masculine/feminine encounter can also be explained in the analogy of winter… It’s the middle of winter, the day after a snowstorm, sky is clear and the sun unobstructed.   Not bitterly cold, the sun provides just enough warmth.  There’s moisture in the air.  You can appreciate the cold.   Your vision is full of direct sunlight and reflected light from the snow.  The snow starts to gradually melt giving up its compact position.  There’s a transition happening within the contrasts.  It’s a break in the action (or inaction of winter), the soul’s winter oasis, but it’s only a window… winter isn’t ready to break…yet

And doesn’t the cold woman who is extremely sparing with her warmth best serve male aspirations… Life is best stimulated by distant light
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