Beauty appears in sadness, misery and folly: An ethical perspective

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This chapter focuses on the beauty that often appears in and from (extreme) sadness, misery and folly. It argues that the experience of beauty is an ancient impulse, and that one need not progress through the lower hierarchical levels set out by the psychologist Maslow before experiencing the higher, more sophisticated level of beauty. It looks at how beauty and ugliness are often interwoven with each other, but also how each one takes its own form and style in society. Beauty calls and attracts us; it is present in everybody and all around us; there is a transformative power in beauty that invites and encourages us to become the changing music in this world and transform it through a cosmic dance that radiates further beauty. With a view of John's vision from Patmos of the New Jerusalem, we must try to transform our cities with beauty, goodness, and truth.

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