Argument from beauty

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Autumn foliage

The argument from beauty argues the existence of beauty in the natural world testifies to the existence of God who both designed natural beauty and who possesses a divine beauty. Objective beauty exists and beauty is not merely subjective in nature.[1]

The psalmist David wrote: "One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD And to meditate in His temple."(Psalm 27:4). The fall of man caused death, disease and suffering to enter into the world. The Bible also declares that Sarah, Abraham's wife, had both inner and outer beauty.[2]

Author John C. Wright wrote in his 2014 essay How We’ve Been Robbed of Beauty by the Left:

The strongest argument against the atheism so beloved of the Left is not an argument that can be put in words, for it is the argument of beauty. If you see a sunset clothed in scarlet like a king descending to his empurpled pyre, or wonder at the gleaming thunder of a waterfall, if you find yourself fascinated by the soft intricacy of a crimson rose or behold the cold virgin majesty of the morning star, much less see and enter a cathedral or a walled garden...or Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, if indeed you see real beauty and for a moment you forget yourself, then you are drawn out of yourself into something larger.

In that timeless moment of sublime rapture, the heart knows even if the head cannot put it into words that the dull and quotidian world of betrayal, pain, disappointment and sorrow is not the only world there is. Beauty points to a world beyond this world, a higher realm, a country of joy where there is no death. Beauty points to the divine.

The Left hates this argument, because – since it is not put into words – it cannot be refuted in words.[3]

"Natural selection has no reason to produce beauty," Ann Gauger says in Metamorphosis about a principle that applies to flowers as well as butterflies. "Beauty is a sign of the transcendent. It's purely gratuitous. We all recognize it. We just have to acknowledge what it points to."[4]

Carl Sagan declared: “I find that a chilling, spine-tingling, exciting, perspective-raising, consciousness-raising experience. It’s said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience.”[5]

Christendom has created a vast collection of beautiful Christian paintings, yet the atheist community, which has been in the world for thousands of years (since at least the time of ancient Greece), has yet to create one beautiful painting depicting their ideology nor have they created a large body of atheist art.

Atheists/evolutionists often engage in hypocrisy on the issue of beauty in God's universe and engage in self-refuting arguments which argue that beauty is merely subjective, yet non-beauty/ugliness is an objective reality (non-beauty arose after the fall of man).[6][7][8]

Furthermore, prominent atheists/agnostics/skeptics have exhibited great feelings of transcendency when examining nature.[9] For example, the agnostic and evolutionist Carl Sagan declared: “I find that a chilling, spine-tingling, exciting, perspective-raising, consciousness-raising experience. It’s said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience.”[10] Richard Dawkins' website quotes the atheist swimmer Diana Nyad declaring: "I can stand at the beach's edge with the most devout Christian, Jew, Buddhist — go on down the line — and weep with the beauty of this universe...".[11] Even in atheistic Japan, children see the world as designed.[12]

God, the creator of beauty, and the folly and ugliness of atheism

see also: Resources for leaving atheism and becoming a Christian

The psalmist David wrote: "The fool has said in his heart, 'There is no God.'"

The writers of the Bible considered the existence of God to be self-evident and Moses simply wrote: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." (Genesis 1:1).[13]

Accordingly, the psalmist David declared:

"The fool has said in his heart, 'There is no God.' They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good." - Psalms 14:1 (KJV)

The psalmist David also wrote "The heavens declare the glory of God..." - Psalms 19:1

In his letter to the Romans the Apostle Paul declared:

"For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse..." - Romans 1:19-20 (NKJV)

Atheism: Art, music and poetry

Stain glass depiction of the Apostle John Ritualistic atheists find beauty in certain religious traditions, symbols or rituals.[14] See also: American atheists and church attendance

See also: Atheist art and Atheist music and Atheist poetry

Despite existing since ancient Greece, relative to Christianity, which has a large collection of art, music and poetry associated it, atheism has a very small collection of art, music and poetry associated with it (see: Atheist art and Atheist music and Atheist poetry).

A common explanation for the relatively smart amount of atheist art/music/poetry is the uninspiring nature of atheism (see: Atheism and inspiration).

The Christian Post reported:

In a new study of the various types of nonbelievers, researchers from The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga say "one of the most interesting and unexpected" types they examined is the "ritual" atheist or agnostic, who finds some value in religious teachings and practices.

Those who fall into this category, according to the researchers, are nonbelievers who may have a philosophical appreciation for certain religious teachings, who like being part of a community, who want to stay in touch with their ethnic identity or who simply find beauty in certain religious traditions, symbols or rituals.

"The implication of this particular typology is that you could be sitting next to somebody in church right now who may, in fact, not buy into the theology that the rest of the congregation buys into," said principal researcher Christopher F. Silver in an interview with The Christian Post.[15]

See also: American atheists and church attendance

For more information please see: Atheism and culture

Atheist worldview, nature and futility

See: Atheist worldview, nature and futility and Atheism and wonder

Although Bertrand Russell was an agnostic, he had favorable views towards atheism.[16] Bertrand Russell wrote in 1903 about entropy and the universe:

That man is the product of causes that had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve individual life beyond the grave; that all the labors of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man's achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a universe in ruins- all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand.

"Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding dispair, can the soul's habitation henceforth be safely built." [17]

See also: Hopelessness of atheism and Second law of thermodynamics and Fall of man

Atheism and a lack of appreciation for the beauty of the human body

See: Atheism and a lack of appreciation for the beauty of the human body

See also

Articles on the argument from beauty

Notes