What’s the nature of beauty? What does it mean to be beautiful? What does it mean to beautify oneself? What does beauty itself mean? What does it mean to experience beauty? What does it mean to introject beauty? What does it mean to project beauty? What is the ethical nature of beauty? Does beauty inspire virtue, semi-vice or vice? How do we that know something is beautiful or is it like pornorgraphy, namely that we know it when we see it without being able to define it?
Of course these are quite a few questions and some might resort apophatic epistemology to avoid investigation in implying that this belongs to the repressed domain of the feminine and so is ostensibly is beyond the scope of the scientific. The answer to that is that ignorance is no sin but deliberate ignorance surely is. What does this mean? It means that acting on doubt despite certainty is not the way of righteousness just as it is surely not virtuous to act upon any other irrational emotion.
Let first inquire first inquire as to the motives of beautifying oneself. Primping is performed by females for several reason. 1) To become well-treated, to get access to more selection of potential partners in love, 2) to inspire respect, 3) to respect oneself, 4) to recognize one’s personality in one’s image in the mirror, 5) self-expression, 6) create emotions of pleasure in others, 7) activate virtues in others, 8) project love, desire, intimacy, taste and loving kindness.
It is clear, indeed indisputable that these are all virtues. Yet acts are performative and so primping may of course be a cover for vice by the primping person. This is also not uncommon. Nearly all contemporary females have hardcore fantasies about becoming raped, prostituted, sexually harassed and sexually molested in public space.
This brings us to the question of erotic imagination and the nature of erotic imagination in heteroculture. Males typically have hardcore social fantasies and softcore sexual fantasies. Females typically have softcore social fantasies and hardcore sexual fantasies. It is typically assumed that females are softcore altogether and that males are hardcore altogether and this of course is a stereotype and patently untrue.
Sigmund Freud suggested that males derive pleasure from observing women and that females conversely derive pleasure from being observed by men. This of course fundamentally true about heteroculture, yet of course certainly not so in every individual.
Is it a sin to walk around primped and giggling in the city with wet panties? It certainly is no sin but rather lovely and virtuous self-expression. The primped female does not only seek aesthetic nobility,as she wished to inspire noble conduct from fellow persons of all genders. It is true that being primped risks the danger of being raped and it may also risk the danger of becoming sexually harassed. Why is this so and how is this so? If a female is primarily perceived as sexually appealing may that risk the risk of rape and sexual harassment. If a female looks innocent may that increase the risk of rape and sexual harassment. If a however a female looks so extremely beautiful that others dare not approach out of shyness, fear of being being rejected, sexual desires of a selfish nature and so one does this mean that the sublime nature of her primping protects her from rape, sexual harassment, etc.
This brings us to the question of virtue. Primping is to be sure not an act of innocence, it is a performative act whose motive may be those of virtue, vice or semi-vice. The motives of an intelligence seduction agent may have any nature as ranging from the most ethical to the most evil. The motives of a sex worker may have any nature as ranging from the most ethical to the most evil. The motives of primping females may have any nature as ranging from the most ethical to the most evil. The motives of primping males may have any nature as ranging from the most ethical to the most evil. The motives of flirtation may have any nature as ranging from the most ethical to the most evil. The motives of charm may have any nature as ranging from the most ethical to the most evil. The motives of seduction may have any nature as ranging from the most ethical to the most evil.
This clearly proves that all these things are performative in nature and therefore not necessarily virtuous, yet that is the nature of all nominal acts of virtue which may be the reverse of what they seeming nominally imply to express.
Generally speaking is beauty and beautification virtuous but as all virtue need we be conscious that the mere appearance of virtue is not identical with virtue itself. The seemingly pious may be a complete hypocrite. The good deed may be enacted out of evil intentions. Generosity may be a cover for greed. Love may be a cover for radical evil. This is generally true of the performance of what outwardly seems to be virtuous and usually, yet but not necessarily is so. Hitler’s pope was named Pius, a clear mockery of virtue.
Yet this of course must not lead to rejection of a noble virtue altogether due to the risk of it being partly or entirely the opposite of its seeming appearance. Evil more often than not masquerades as goodness. A person may thus inadvertently become attracted to vice by the appearance of virtue and this attraction may have the noblest of intentions.
Enhanced beauty may be expressive of intrinsic personhood, it may serve to disguise personhood or a mixture of the two. This is a most essential aspect of the ethics of primping. Primping as every other human activity needs become subjected to ethics and of course what purports to be ethics may rather be hypocritical vice or semi-vice in disguise.
These are obvious important matters consider and not merely philosophically but crucially for purposes of an applied science of love. These are matters which furthermore need be studied interdisciplinarily in all scientific disciplines as considering how fundamental love is for the human condition and of course no less so for other animals as well.
We in the sense of human persons of all genders are certainly well advised to primp as performance of virtue in ennobling ourselves and others. How is this performed? We need not only consider how to conduct ourselves and how we primp ourselves but furthermore how we impact others. While we are not directly responsible for how others act towards ourselves can we not avail ourselves of the responsibility in that we influence how others act towards ourselves.
This is not to imply that it is wrong to be sensually attractive in public in causing emotions of intimate attraction but rather that we need endeavor to bring out the best in others. Primping hence needs be expressive of virtue in the primping person as well as endeavor to produce virtue in others by impact.
Primping as other semiotic performance is of course both projection and introjection; projection of virtue by the primping person and introjection of virtue by the Other. The reverse may of course be true true in primping causing projection and introjection of vice but that is generally speaking the exception. Nominal expression of seeming virtue is generally performative in there being parallel expressions of seeming virtue and its very opposite. Conversely, what may seem like vice may of course also be virtue in disguise and then of course there is the slippery slope of semi-vice which may either provide descent into evil, a path to virtue or permanent suffering. These matters are very clear yet it is essential to be cognizant of the performative nature of nominal acts (signifié) of virtue which may or may not be what they seem to be (signifiant).
This brings us to the question of nobility and its performative nature. What is then nobility? Nobility is to conduct what beauty is to appearance. Everything above about the performance of beauty is true of performance of nobility as well.
It is clear that the two are most umbilically connected but what is the connection and what is the nature of this connection? Nobility is beauty and beauty is nobility. Nobility is performative and semiotic and beauty is performative and semiotic.
Primping as performed out nobility, i.e. a desire to ennoble is virtue. Nobility as performed to create aesthetic sensation is virtue. Beauty without expression of nobility is not beauty. Nobility without aesthetic sensation is not nobility. Nobility in beauty and beauty in nobility are thus the yin and yang of ethical self-expression.
Is ethical primping/beautification thus an ethical imperative? It certainly is an ethical imperative for human persons of all genders with a number of qualifications. 1) First is it not imperative at all times and 2) second must it be performed out of love of virtue, loving kindness and love for the other and not out of fear of becoming mistreated for looking ordinary or unattractive without primping.
Primping as every other virtues may be vice in disguise and so is it essential to perform primping with a pure heart but we need also consider the reactions that performance of semiotic expression in beauty cause in others even if we are not directly responsible for those reactions.
This brings us to question of responsibility and the importance of responsible nobility and responsible primping alike. We have no responsibility for vice of others, but we have responsible for semi-vice of others. What does this mean? It means that semiotic expression must not be utilitarian but rather needs be responsibly calibrated in its intended expression but also in its intended impression.
Imagine that you walk around primped in the street and that evokes hatred. Do you have any responsibility for that? No you don’t, there is nothing wrong with being out of the closet about your virtues. But you are however responsible for causing more ambiguous emotions in others and you need to avoid that. You should strive to increasingly perfect semiotic expression of beauty no less than you should strive to increasingly perfect semiotic expression in nobility. This means that you should strive to cause unambiguous virtue in others by conduct and appearance alike. BEAUTY AND NOBILITY ARE THE YIN AND YANG OF ETHICAL SELF-EXPRESSION.