Essentials Of Unification Thought - The Head-Wing Thought
III. The Dual Purpose of Artistic Activity: Creation and Appreciation
Artistic activity consists of two aspects, namely, creation and appreciation. These are not separate activities; rather they are united activities. This means that, while engaging in creation, one engages in appreciation as well, and while engaging in appreciation, one creatively adds to the work of art one's own subjective perspective (called "subjective action," which will be explained below).
Why must creation and appreciation exist side by side? From the viewpoint of Unification Thought, creation and appreciation are practical activities carried out on the basis of the dual desires to realize value and to seek value. Specifically, creation is performed on the basis of the desire to realize value, and appreciation is performed on the basis of the desire to seek value. And where do these desires come from? They come from the dual purposes-that is, the desire to realize value comes from the purpose for the whole, and the desire to seek value comes from the purpose for the individual.
The purpose for the whole, even when not conscious, is latent in a person's subconsciousness. For that reason, everyone, consciously or subconsciously, seeks to serve a larger whole-the country, humankind, God-and strives to live a life of trueness, to do good deeds, and to create beauty. Accordingly, creation is an act to fulfill the purpose for the whole. But people live for their own sake as well. This means that everyone seeks to obtain joy by finding value in an object. This is where appreciation is manifested. Accordingly, appreciation in art is an act to fulfill the purpose for the individual.
The purpose for the whole and the purpose for the individual come from God's purpose of creation. God created human beings in order to obtain joy; this is the purpose of creation from the standpoint of God. From the standpoint of human beings, however, it is the purpose of being created, which is both to please God and to find joy for themselves. Together, these are the purpose for the whole and the purpose for the individual.
In this way, creation in art is the act whereby an artist, in the position of object, manifests value for the sake of God and humankind, whereas appreciation is the act whereby an appreciator, in the position of subject, finds value in a work of art. Both actions are derived from God's purpose of creation. Today, however, it is often the case that artists have deviated from the original proper position and have fallen into self-centered art. This has become a deplorable situation. If the true meaning of creation and appreciation becomes clear, artists will come to see their activity with a sense of mission, and will pursue artistic activities as in the original ideal.
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