I have a friend who's an artist and has sometimes taken a view which I don't agree with very well. He'll hold up a flower and say "look how beautiful it is," and I'll agree. Then he says "I as an artist can see how beautiful this is but you as a scientist take this all apart and it becomes a dull thing," and I think that he's kind of nutty. First of all, the beauty that he sees is available to other people and to me too, I believe. Although I may not be quite as refined aesthetically as he is ... I can appreciate the beauty of a flower. At the same time, I see much more about the flower than he sees. I could imagine the cells in there, the complicated actions inside, which also have a beauty. I mean it's not just beauty at this dimension, at one centimeter; there's also beauty at smaller dimensions, the inner structure, also the processes. The fact that the colors in the flower evolved in order to attract insects to pollinate it is interesting; it means that insects can see the color. It adds a question: does this aesthetic sense also exist in the lower forms? Why is it aesthetic? All kinds of interesting questions which the science knowledge only adds to the excitement, the mystery and the awe of a flower. It only adds. I don't understand how it subtracts.
~ Richard P. Feynman
- Code Golf 21.5k 21.5k 66 gold badges6262 silver badges156156 bronze badges
- Worldbuilding 2.2k 2.2k 22 gold badges1313 silver badges3131 bronze badges
- Area 51 1.2k 1.2k 11 silver badge1717 bronze badges
- Stack Overflow 765 765 11 gold badge55 silver badges2020 bronze badges
- Astronomy 719 719 33 silver badges1414 bronze badges
- View network profile →