عنوان مقاله [English]
Aesthetics is one of the most important and essential issues in the literature of nations, therefore it is necessary to study this issue in the authentic works of Persian literature based on other aesthetic theories. Mathnavi Manavi is one of the most outstanding treasures of Persian literature and mysticism, which can be considered in order to understand the concept and function of beauty. In this valuable work, the most important fundamentals of mystical aesthetics are explained. The issue under study is to examine the deep structure concepts of aesthetics based on proportion, perfection, taste and pleasure in Mathnavi Manavi.
Considering the concept of "proportionality and harmony" from Movlana's point of view, the origin of existence of all creatures of the universe is from God almighty, and all the creatures are illustrations of the divine soul and spirit, thus in their nature there is proportion and harmony and there are no defects or disproportion in them and they have all been created in complete balance and harmony. Movlana considers two aspects to the concept of pleasure, that is, external and internal pleasure. He defines pleasure as a pleasant and desirable sense that is derived from the meaning of something, and he only considers a kind of pleasure as authentic which is derived from the wisdom of human beings. Considering perfection, from Movlana's point of view beauty is a stage and means towards perfection. He considers the perfection of creatures in reaching their real potentials and origin, and the closer they get to that real potential and origin, the more beautiful and perfect they are.
In this article, first, the sources related to aesthetics have been studied thoroughly. After studying Mathnavi, the characteristics and components of aesthetics have been extracted from this work by considering the view point of scholars in this field and attempts have been made to study aesthetics in Movlana's thoughts and words based on the concept of "proportionality, usefulness, pleasure and perfection" and Mathnavi Manavi verses have been investigated by content-analytical method.
Beauty is one of the most important and difficult concepts that has been considered and studied in the field of philosophy and mysticism for a long time, and comprehending what it is and how to obtain and understand it has had an important role in the formation of literary.
and artistic creations and their characteristics in different ages for different schools of thoughts. Islamic scholars and mystics have expressed their opinions on beauty based on their specific epistemological concepts and principles and worldview, and their views cover all the elements of human life, and these works of art are emerged and reflected in individual and social activities. In other words, in Islamic wisdom and mysticism, beauty is mostly an ontological concept, so much that in mysticism, "the discussion of beauty is the discussion of existence and creatures ... [because in this view] beauty is the emergence of existence and truth" (Pazouki, 2003, p. 4).
One of the most outstanding and magnificent literary and mystical texts that can be used to comprehend the truth of beauty is Mathnavi Manavi. This work is considered a great masterpiece in the history of literature and is one of the most complete philosophical and wisdom works in verse in Persian language and can be studied in the field of philosophy of art and philosophical aesthetics.
The poet aims at evoking the feelings and emotions and manifesting true spirit in a human being. The whole beauty of the poem is also a production of joining and creating harmony between each of its elements. The coordination between different parts of the poem including surface beauty (surface structure section) and in-depth beauty (deep structure section) constructs the whole principle of poetic aesthetics.
"The different parts in the surface structure section include language (phonemes, words, phrases, and syntactic forms), music (external, side, internal and spiritual) and imaginary forms. The deep structure section includes what is related to the content or deep meaning of the poem and includes emotions, the thought underlying the emotion and the subject or message or whatever which is proposed in classical literature as the meaning of the poem” (Sehba, 2005, p. 93). This study has a philosophical approach to beauty and aesthetics and goes beyond external and structural forms. The concept of beauty and aesthetics has various dimensions which cover a wide range of in-depth meanings, including materialistic (superficial) and spiritual meanings.
Here are some general definitions of beauty:
Aesthetics based on good proportion (harmony) and usefulness; "Plato's closest definition of beauty is the definition of beauty in proportion and harmony, which applies to both tangible and over-tangible beauty". He certainly acknowledged that there were two, and one covered the other one" (Madadpour, vol. 2, 2004, p. 182).
Aristotle also considers proportionality as a criterion for beauty, as Will Durant puts it: "Aristotle's answer to the question of beauty is the unique answer of the Greek; beauty means the coordination and proportionality and excellent order in the components which make the whole. Whether we are talking about beauty in living beings or objects which are composed of different parts, among these parts there must be an order and coordination, there must also be a limit and certain size to each part , because the criterion for beauty is having a certain size and order” (Durant, 1995, p. 217).
Imam Mohammad al-Ghazali has also expressed his views on beauty. He considers the real beauty to be in proportionality and believes that everything that is proportionate is a manifestation of the beauty of the afterlife world and believed: "The essence of man is connected with the afterlife world - which is called the world of souls - and the afterlife world is the world of goodness and beauty. Goodness and beauty are proportionate, and whatever is proportionate is an illustration of the beauty of the afterlife world, since the beauty and proportion that is observed in this world is all the production of goodness and beauty and proportion of the afterlife world” (Balkhari, 2008, p. 46).
Attention to beauty and aesthetics is one of the main and important principles of Persian love poetry and mystical poetry, and Movlana is no exception in this issue. According to him, there are no defects or disproportion in God's creations. All the living beings in the universe are created by the God almighty who has created them in the right proportion and in a balanced and compatible way. So they are all beautiful. Since all the creatures of the universe have received the origin of their existence and soul from God and thus are illustrations of the divine soul and spirit, so in their essence there is order and proportion.
Movlana also associates proportionality with efficacy. In his view, a living being is beautiful and proportionate when it is beneficial and useful. In this case, the more distant the creature from its goal and end, the more disproportionate and ugly it will be. For example, a tree is proportionate when it is green with plenty of fresh fruits and not just upright in appearance.
Aesthetics based on the meaning of taste; in the contemporary literature on aesthetics, taste is a broad concept from which the aesthetic aspect of a phenomenon can be gained. Early writers such as Shaftesbury and Hutcheson believed that aesthetic judgment relied on an "inner feeling" close to one's moral conscience. Those who consider taste to be a form of aesthetic perception or intuition generally accept that taste is a kind of inner feeling by which the beauty or glory and extraordinary attributes of a phenomenon can be discerned, and the obvious aspect is the feeling of satisfaction and pleasure that a person gains.
Beauty in the sense of "pleasure," is also rooted in ancient Greek and Epicurean philosophy. "Epicureans described beauty as something enjoyable." (Balkhari, 2008: 45) As Epicure said, "Every creature is looking for pleasure, and happiness is in pleasure" (Copleston, vol. 1, 1989, p. 467).
There are many theories about the discussion of pleasure in beauty, and some experts in this field have included "pleasure" in their definition of beauty. One of them is William Ahaloureny. This is his definition of beauty: "Beauty is something that is inherently enjoyable, and in other words beauty is something which gives pleasure to mind and arouses love" (Tolstoy, 1971, p. 329) .
Movlana has used the concept of pleasure with the words "joy", "taste" and "pleasure", and he considers pleasure to be of two kinds: superficial and inner pleasure. He defines pleasure as a pleasant and desirable feeling derived from the meaning of something.
According to Movlana, pleasure is the hidden meaning in things, and this gives motivation for the man to acquire everything. In fact the motivation to move and try to achieve different things derives from the hidden and shapeless taste and pleasure in their meaning. This aspect of pleasure is sometimes immaterial and sometimes material and visible and Movlana believes that some people are misled by material and physical pleasures which bring about their destruction , and he considers only immaterial pleasure to be genuine which is the result of shrewd evolved mind.
Aesthetics based on the meaning of perfection; from view point of Muslim scholars and philosophers, beauty and aesthetics are always associated with perfection, because " every perfection requires beauty and there is a very strong connection between them and beauty should not be separated from perfection. Beauty is inherently related to perfection" (Avani, 1996, p. 321). From Farabi's point of view " God is the source of beauty since he created the man and this world from his own beauty. God is the most perfect being, and all the goodness and beauty is from him" (Bahrami, 2015, p. 137).
Considering perfection as beauty Plato says: " God wanted the creatures to be as perfect as possible, and their perfection was to be like the most perfect being, and since there was no more perfect being than God Himself, God's will was to make all things like Himself " Plato says (Durant, vol 1, 1996, p. 283).
Movlana considers beauty and attractiveness to be a stage of perfection, and the manifestation of the ultimate perfection and beauty is in God almighty. He considers all the creatures to be beautiful and he believes that each of them is created for a purpose which is beyond the visible beauty, and those beauties lead the man to ultimate beauty which God possesses. According to him, all the enthusiasm and passionate movements of the creatures of the universe are in the attainment of perfection and connection with the ultimate perfection. According to Christine Woolf, "the reason for the existence of this perfect world is to reflect the infinite perfection of God. The reason for the existence of shrewd and sensitive living beings such as man is to be able to comprehend and appreciate the perfection of God, which is crystallized in the world of creation. In a book called "Rational Thoughts on the End of Natural Affairs", he states that "the ultimate goal of the world is to find the perfection of God through it ..." (Wolff, 1726, p. 6). In Movlana's view point, perfection is the highest stage of beauty because it somehow includes all stages of beauty, such as goodness and usefulness, proportion and pleasure.
From Greek philosophy to Baumgarten, we are faced with variety and diversity of many meanings of aesthetics, which can hardly be attributed to a number of semantic variations of aesthetics; furthermore beauty is not subject to fixed rules and regulations. Thus beauty and aesthetics have different dimensions that cover a wide range of superficial (apparent) and deep (spiritual) meanings. In Movlana's view, the whole universe is a manifestation of his existence. God has various manifestations in the world. Movlana considers all the components of creation as a unique manifestation of God. Thus, in Movlana's view, existence is a mirror in which God is constantly manifested. Movlana finds all the components of existence to be full of beauty, and since the origin of all creatures is from God, there is proportion and order in their nature, and in God's creations there are no defects or disproportion. God almighty has created all the living beings in balance and therefore they are all beautiful. Furthermore, Movlana considers proportionality to be equivalent to usefulness, and in no way considers proportionality to mean the observance of numerical and mathematical proportions in the appearance of living beings, thus in his view a living being is beautiful and proportionate when it is useful and effective. A creature which is far removed from its purpose of creation will be just as disproportionate and unattractive. Regarding aesthetics based on pleasure Movlana considers pleasure to be of two kinds: superficial and inner pleasure. He defines pleasure as a pleasant and desirable feeling derived from the meaning of something. Movlana believes that some people are misled by material and physical pleasures which bring about their destruction; he considers pleasures such as the acquisition of superficial sciences and knowledge - which are the result of partial egoism and reasoning and thus devoid of true knowledge - to be phony and unstable, and he considers only deep inner pleasure to be genuine which is the outcome of shrewd evolved mind. Therefore, true pleasure is an inner and intrinsic thing, not an external and superficial thing. And in order to attain true happiness, the man on the way to real pleasure must move in the direction of spiritual life. Concerning aesthetics based on perfection, Movlana considers beauty and attractiveness to be a stage of perfection, and the manifestation of the ultimate perfection and beauty is in God almighty. He considers all the creatures to be beautiful and he believes that each of them is created for a purpose which is beyond the visible beauty, and those beauties lead the man to ultimate beauty which God possesses. According to him, all the enthusiasm and passionate movements of the creatures of the universe are in the attainment of perfection and connection with the ultimate perfection. SoMovlana believes that the perfection of all the creatures is in reaching their real potential and origin and the closer they get to that stage of perfection, the more beautiful they will be and thus they will benefit more from the real perfection.