I know which gaze I think more beautiful


Spiral Galaxy NGC 1512: The Inner Ring


Leonardo da Vinci, ‘Mona Lisa’, oil on poplar panel, c. 1503-06, Musée de Louvre

‘Let art be content with its lofty, splendid mission of being a substitute for reality in case of its absence, and of being a textbook of life for man. Reality stands higher than dreams, and essential purpose stands higher than fantastic claims.’

N.G. Chernyshevsky, ‘The Aesthetic Relation of Art to Reality’, MA thesis, 1855, in Selected Philosophical Essays, Foreign Languages Publishing House, Moscow, 1953, 379


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Hegel’s God: the Neoplatonic Self, and the world He creates within

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), Vitruvian Man, c. 1490. Pen, ink and wash on paper, Gallerie dell’Accademia, Venezia

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), Vitruvian Man, c. 1490. Pen, ink and wash on paper, Gallerie dell’Accademia, Venezia

‘It is I who produce that beyond; the finite and the infinite are equally my product, and I stand above both of them, both disappear in me. I am lord and master of this definition: I bring it forth. They vanish in and through me – and thus the second position is established: that I am the affirmation which at first I placed outside in a beyond; the infinite first comes into being through me. I am the negation of negation, it is I in whom the antithesis disappears; I am the reflection that brings them both to naught.’

G.W.F.Hegel, Lectures on the Philosophy of Religion, Volume 1 Introduction and the Concept of Religion, ed. Peter C. Hodgson, trans., R.F.Brown, P.C.Hodgson and J.M.Stewart, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 2007, 295

“Each ‘I’ is a whole world, and this whole world is contained within this simple point, within the ‘I’, which has in itself the energy of all that comes forth from it.”

G.W.F.Hegel, Lectures on the History of Philosophy 1825-6 Volume I: Introduction and Oriental Philosophy, Together With the Introductions from the Other Series of These Lectures, Trans. Robert F.Brown and J.M.Stewart, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 2009, 50