In short, Poussin’s reason got him trapped in fantasy. His striving for legibility backfired: the pious Madame du Housset , who owned the Vergilian Shepherds of Arcady, had placed it in her chapel thinking it was an altarpiece. ….
Poussin had been caught at his own game, but only because he had played it so very seriously. Thereby he brought to light the contradictions latent in his procedure. And the very act of facing them honestly carried him beyond the limits before which other artists were brought up short. Poussin’s radicalism forced him to realize that action and thought were incompatible. Action is movement, a passing, an appearance; thought is stable, immobile, essential. A gesture, even rationalized and idealized, is not an eternal truth but an awkwardly frozen moment, a feeble attempt to capture “the in-between”. Hence Poussin now tries to reduce action to immobility. The canvas remains a stage, but it shrinks, and the actors become fewer.
A new problem must now be solved: how to reconcile the old need for expression with the new demand for fixity. The answer is masks, which are both meaningful and motionless. The faces of the protagonists now seemed covered by plaster casts taken from ancient sculpture. Another answer consists in transforming the drama, in taking it from the physical to the interior, or psychological level. The limbs quiet down; the eyes become the sole instruments of action, and action gradually gives way to contemplation.
Of course, much of this reflection brought Poussin back to the Greek philosophers and the issue of free will and the perception that we act as if there was free will. But how to pictorially represent an absence of free will beyond a reductionism to mathematics and geometry? …”all beginnings are involuntary.” “whether or not they exist, we are slaves to the gods” – Fernando Pessoa. So, the issue became, that if things in the world move toward goals,seen as fluid and variable coordinates, how does one explain an arrow moving toward its goal except by the archer’s directing it. Hence, there must be an intelligent designer who orchestrates all things to their goals, and this is God. Though, if you ask the arrow it may respond that it is flying through the air because it likes to. ….”We are free to chose what we want, but we are not free to want what we want. That was Schopenhauer’s synthesis to explain the illusion of freedom of the will.” (Hune at Martin Buber Dialogical Ecology )
Contemplation was the prime occupation of the Greek gods; and the Olympians were, along with the Holy Family, Poussin’s favorite subjects. For us, accustomed by contemporary painting to disregard subjects or at least to consider them as pretexts, it is, perhaps, not easy to realize their importance to the classic master. For him, they must be fully appropriate to his aesthetic and moral preoccupations. His subjects are in every sense loaded. His choice of themes is as significant as are his abstentions . If the Old Testament themes give way little by little to New Testament ones, and if his Moseses are outnumbered by his Madonnas, it is because physical action prevails in the former, psychological nonaction in the latter.
The growing concern with immobility finds a fitting outlet in the themes, so frequent in Poussin’s later years, of his Rest during the Flight Into Egypt and of The Holy Family, as it does in the unruffled serenity of his Olympians. Subject matter thus underscores the total reconcilement of aesthetics with religious belief and philosophic thought.
For the Hellenic deities do not in Poussin’s eyes conflict with god. To his syncretic mind, Christ might well have been the last of the Greek divinities, a latter day Apollo, as indeed He appears on the early Christian sarcophagi that Poussin could see in Rome.
This much is sure: Poussin took his gods seriously. His was, in Joshua Reynolds words, a man thrown back two millennia, “and as it were naturalized in antiquity.” For him, antiquity was no thing of the past. There are no ruins in his work. In Poussin’s day everybody invoked the ancients, as today everyone invokes democracy. Unlike that of his contemporaries, however, Poussin’s homage was no lip service. Where they saw but a convenient reservoir of mythological ornaments, he recognized pregnant myths.
The ontological argument has had a long and stormy history. It has appealed to some of the finest minds in Western history, usually mathematicians like Descartes, Spinoza, and Leibniz. However, it fails to persuade most people, who seem to harbor the same suspicion as Kant that “the unconditioned necessity of a judgment does not form the absolute necessity of a thing.” That is, perfection may not be a true predicate and thus a proposition can be logically necessary without being true in fact. Read More:http://mb-soft.com/believe/text/argument.htm
It appears that Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello is really not a design based on an “antique temple” – - it is one. A pagan illuminist temple in the heart of Virginia…the Virgin. The roman villa at Nimes visited by both Poussin , suspected Grand Master of the Priory of Sion, and Thomas Jefferson had the concept of beautiful girls imbedded in it as symbols of columns . Clearly, Monticello was placed where it was due to sacred geometry – the 23.5 of the Bloodline of Jesus and Mary Magdalene more linked to the golden ratio, called the Divine Ratio or a code embedded by God himself in the creation of Nature – more .Read More:http://www.scoreboard-canada.com/babylon-goldenratiopoussincode.htm
Adding to this, Schopenhauer concludes in The World as Will and Representation that we create the violent state of nature, for he maintains that the individuation that we impose upon things, is imposed upon a blind striving energy that, once it becomes individuated and objectified, turns against itself, consumes itself, and does violence to itself. His paradigm image is of the bulldog-ant of Australia, which when cut in half, struggles in a battle to the death between its head and tail. Our very quest for scientific and practical knowledge creates a world that feasts upon itself.
This marks the origin of Schopenhauer’s renowned pessimism: he claims that as individuals, we are the unfortunate products of our own epistemological making, and that within the world of appearances that we structure, we are fated to fight with other individuals, and to want more than we can ever have. On Schopenhauer’s view, the world of daily life is essentially violent and frustrating; it is a world that, as long as our consciousness remains at that level where the principle of sufficient reason applies in its fourfold root, will never resolve itself into a condition of greater tranquillity. As he explicitly states, daily life “is suffering” and to express this, he employs images of frustration taken from classical Greek mythology, such as those of Tantalus and the Danaids, along with the suffering of Ixion on the ever-spinning wheel of fire. Read More:http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/schopenhauer/