The gift and call of beauty

Michael A. Hayes

What does it mean to say something or someone is beautiful? What does it mean to describe as beautiful say, for example, Michelangelo?s Pieta, depicting the body of Jesus on the lap of his mother Mary, or his Statue of David? What does it mean to say that the music of Tchaikovsky?s Swan Lake, or Beethoven?s Symphony no 6, or Mozart?s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, are beautiful pieces of music? What does it mean to describe another person as beautiful? Obviously something happens to the recipient?s senses when they experience something as beautiful. The ancient Greeks knew that ?beauty is in the eye of the beholder?, meaning that the perception of beauty is subjective. ?

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