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Paper Information

Journal:   JOURNAL OF RESEARCHES IN ISLAMIC ARCHITECTURE   SUMMER 2014 , Volume 1 , Number 3; Page(s) 15 To 28.
 
Paper: 

A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF MULLA SADRA’S APPROACH AS AN ISLAMIC MASTERMIND AND THE COMMON THEORIES IN REGARDS TO AESTHETIC EXPERIENCE MODELS

 
 
Author(s):  MOZAFAR FARHANG, VATANDOUST RASOOL, SHAYEGANFAR NADER, TABATABAEI ZOHREH
 
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Abstract: 

Artworks are treated as important because they are sources of aesthetic experiences. These experiences attract audiences. The concept that all aesthetic experiences are based on is their perspective of perception.
Aesthetic experience is an artistic response. A response that requires the understanding of aesthetics features and contemplating the artwork’s form with it’s ultimate purpose. On one hand, aesthetic experience is a pleasurable feeling towards a beautiful object, and on the other hand, it is beyond the feeling and it brings along assessment and judgment; we experience the art piece in order to understand its values. But, through what stages do the audience gain this experience? The relation between the audience and a beautiful object or an artwork that has impressed them is the total origin of aesthetics. The constituent elements of aesthetics experience can be mentioned as, sensory perception, emotions, understanding, imagination and exploration.
These models are a sub-category of theories of developmental psychology. One of the primary contexts of developmental psychology is its cognitive contexts, which studies the changes regarding intellectual abilities including attention, perception and memory, reasoning, creativity and imagination. Aesthetics Development theories are also in line with individual ability for thinking, followed by promoting the understanding of aesthetics. Those who have worked in this field and their works have been discussed in the present study include Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Rick Robinson and David Perkins. As yet, in our country, no aesthetics experience model has been conducted in accordance to Islamic philosophers’ theology which is originated from Islamic culture, doctrine and theology. On this basis, the present study seeks to design an aesthetics experience model based on the theology of Mula Sadra as an Islamic mastermind.
The fundamental question is that can an aesthetics experience model be designed and explained based on Mula Sadra’s theological principles? These principles can be mentioned as the following: 1- Perception hierarchy: perception is one of the most prominent and most important acts of the human soul. Mula Sadra believes that perception is accomplished not through the soul’s reaction, but yet through the scientific creativity and imagination of the soul within the sphere of perception and imagination, and its promotion and sublimity within the domain of reason. Thus, perception leads to the soul’s evolution through the threestages of sensation, imagination and intellection. 2- Substantial motion: in Mula Sadra’s opinion, motion means “becoming” and therefore, soul’s motion is defined as “exiting potentiality to actuality”. Also, imperative motion is joining strength from weakness. In other words, imperative motion is intense. The human soul pursuits perfection and is ascending, without its constant form changing, the soul finds excellence through its substantial motion in different stages of the world. In fact sublimation in its levels is the same as the soul’s evolution motion stages according to the substantial motion principle. Meaning that first the soul is a sensory perception and is promoted to imagination perception through sensory perception reserves and according to the substantial motion. After that stage, it is ready to enter intellectual perception. 3- Love and beauty: love in Mula Sadra’s opinion starts with an image and ends with an image. The initial image is when the lover perceives the beloved and the ending image is artistic image that is the result of satisfaction and exemplification. Exemplification means portrait painting in aesthetics of imagination and this creative imagination is exemplification. Because from Mulla Sadra’s viewpoint, imagination is not a passive power, yet it is innovative and creative. 4- The union of known and unknown: based on this principle of Mulla Sadra’s epistemic principles, when an individual perceives something, the knowledge that has been created from perceiving the object becomes unified with the individual’s cognition. From his viewpoint, the soul is incomplete at first. It is through knowledge that soul is actualised and perfected, and it becomes unified.
Based on principles that have been derived from the epistemological foundations of Mulla Sadra, it can be concluded that aesthetics experience is a renewable process and based on the substantial motion principle, mankind is always growing and the soul is in the path of completion and every moment with any phenomena that mankind is faced, a new creation occurs for that person. Aesthetics experience, as like the epistemology of this world, is the epistemology of a world that opens a window or a new artwork towards its audience. When the audience start understanding the world with their senses, it is at first through their sensory perception which leads their emotions to follow the artwork; these senses and emotions don’t bring information to our perception without considering the attention and awareness elements. Awareness and attention emerge with repeating the observation process and in this case, the art piece is memorized by audience which is called “the presence of mind”. Presence of mind is defined as the shadow of knowledge and through noting and thinking in regards to the obtained forms from the artwork and from what was previously saved in the audience’s mind, with aid of imagination, the audience wi9ll be able to combine and remodel the forms.
During the sensory perception and imagination and intellectual perception stage, the art piece becomes united with the audience’s existence and spirit. In some stages such as sensory perception, noting and thinking, Mulla Sadra’s aesthetics experience process is similar to other aesthetics experience models. However, elements such as imagination and recreation, attention and awareness, and union are elements that either only a few models have taken them into consideration or have not been considered at all. The ongoing-ness of aesthetics experience without the physical presence of the object is also another difference of Mulla Sadra’s model and previous models.

 
Keyword(s): AESTHETICS EXPERIENCE MODEL, PERCEPTION, SUBSTANTIAL MOTION, IDENTITY OF THE KNOWER AND THE KNOWN, MULLA SADRA
 
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