On Beauty And Where We Find It

… hitherto we have been permitted to seek beauty only in the morally good – a fact which sufficiently accounts for our having found so little of it and having had to seek about for imaginary beauties without backbone! – As surely as the wicked enjoy a hundred kinds of happiness of which the virtuous have no inkling, so too they possess a hundred kinds of beauty; and many of them have not yet been discovered.

from Nietzsche’s Daybreak, s. 468, R.J. Hollingdale transl

What is your favorite scientific beauty?

  1. Hubble space deep magnification images. You suddenly realise how little we know and how great our assumptions are. What you think are stars are actually galaxies. It’s mind meltingly beautiful.

    • Thanks for commenting. THE famous Hubble deep space photo changed my view of life in many ways. Very good choice!

  2. Wicked? Your posts alludes to wickedness and then the question centers on science. Why would science be considered wickedness?
    Even in the bible, which I abhor, it is mentioned that lucifer is, was, a beautiful angel. Does this mean that such beauty is simply an illusion by which evil attracts its victims?

    My greatest interest in science is I suppose somewhat self-serving in that as I approach the age at which most concede that death is inevitable I find myself most fascinated in possible “cures” for death. Is this evil? Selfish? Well, I think it would be beautiful if humanity solved the puzzle of life allowing all to live until they tire of it.

  3. Fractals are nice

  4. Mmm…conversions. The eternally beautiful transfiguration of any facet of life, no matter where your footing.

    ~slave bri

  5. The structure of DNA is beautiful, the way it is built of simple parts to make something complex and unique. It reminds me of programming languages in a way.

    Although some nutcase commented on my old blog that it is proof of divine creation – because the great book of fairy tales states that the magician in the sky spoke the words to create the world. And DNA is like a language, therefore god created DNA. I feel sorry for people who think like that.

    • Wow, that’s a good one. The elegance and wonder of chemistry turned biology. A world of art an beauty invisible to all but those who would look deep enough

      • Exactly! And the way it can be modelled and visualized in 3D, thinking of programs like the new Cosmos… brings science to a wider audience, and hopefully instils in youth an interest in science as well as an appreciation for nature.

      • And speaking of Cosmos, there’s one episode that stands out for me, where he takes his “ship of the imagination” down to microscopic level, into the hidden world in a drop of water. Beautiful and amazing…

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