The World Explored, the World Suffered Education Issue Nr. 22 September 2019 - Page 6

The third Lecture is entitled Introduction to Philosophical Psychology. Aristotle Part Six: Aristotle on Art and Tragedy: “Aristotle insisted upon a threefold distinction of sciences: Theoretical, Practical and Productive. But he did not envisage that the practical and the productive sciences would have no connection with the truth. The human activity of Art, is an activity of mimesis or imitation. Art is imitation Aristotle argues, not of external nature but rather of mans mind, in particular his character, emotions and actions. But why does one desire to imitate? Because firstly,there is both an instinct to imitate demonstrated in the fact that humans distinguish themselves from animals partly in the fact that they learn from other humans by imitating them and secondly because we take delight in imitations. But what then is the telos, the purpose of these mimetic productions? The creation and appreciation of art must be related of course to the flourishing life and its explorations of regions of our mind that seek for understanding with universal intent. The idea of the good object is obviously of major significance in the arena of artistic activity and must be related to both its intellectual and emotional aspects. "Universal intent" here obviously refers to organising our experiences such that we connect emotions and actions that should be connected and differentiate between emotions and actions where there are real differences. Such organisation also entails an understanding of the role of the subject and the role of the object in this process of trying to fathom the depths of the mind. If we are to believe Psychoanalysis, at the bottom of these depths lie the shipwrecks of our experience scattered on the ocean bed and the connection of these fragmented experiences are often not real or as Freud put it, in accordance with the Reality Principle. Death trumps life in such scenes of the unreal.” The work of Adrian Stokes is then evoked : "Structure is ever a concern of art and must necessarily be seen as symbolic, symbolic of emotional patterns, of the psyche's organisation with which we are totally involved......Patterns and the making of wholes are of immense psychical significance in a precise way even apart from the drive towards repairing what we have damaged or destroyed outside every instance of art we receive a persuasive invitation...we experience fully a correlation between the inner and the outer world which is manifestly structured. And so the learned response to that invitation is an aesthetic way of looking at an object." The connection between the work of Aristotle is then discussed: “Hylomorphic theory has been haunting aesthetics from the time of Aristotle up to and including the Critical writings of Adrian Stokes. In this theory we have a theory of how the complex human being is teleologically driven in a process of actualisation/development where powers build upon and integrate with other powers beginning from the level of the biological moving to the level of self consciousness via perception, memory and language and terminating in the telos of the actualisation of the potential of rationality in the spheres of practical and theoretical reasoning. This process will obviously involve the holistic organisation of the sensible and intellectual parts of the mind that occurs in symbolic aesthetic encounters with symbolic aesthetic objects. The Desire to