Even as a child, forcibly marinated in progressive culture and lies, one of the Blue Pills Parallax Optics could never quite swallow was the notion that one’s perception of beauty was predominantly subjective – i.e. “in the eye of the beholder”.
Indeed, Parallax Optics can remember being off school – stuck at home, either sick or on holiday – watching the naked / inchoate feel-good-about-yourself-everybody-is-beautiful propaganda beamed out to the masses – in this case disproportionally consisting of middle-aged / working-class women.
Kilroy, in particular, was exemplary for promoting an incoherent narrative that “everyone is (equally) beautiful / it’s what’s on the inside that counts” – the obvious implication being that everyone is not equally beautiful – a fact quickly ascertained with one look at the studio audience.
But still, the progressive party lie line was clear – “beauty is subjective”.
To the extent that beauty was acknowledged to be derived from the interplay of intersubjective forces, this was attributed to the evil capitalist media’s nefarious agenda to influence our perceptions – in order to sell us things by establishing normative aspirational models we could fall short of, and therefore reflexively consume more, in pursuit of largely unrealizable ideals.
Subjective | Intersubjective | Objective
Now, in Parallax Optics formulation there are three primary ways to conceive our apprehension of beauty:
- Beauty is subjective (i.e. we predominantly derive our own tastes and concepts of what is beautiful from internal thought processes, which may be more or less conscious / unconscious, examined / unexamined, but that these have little ‘objective’ basis in reality – anything can be beautiful.)
- Beauty is intersubjective (i.e. we derive our taste and concepts of what is beautiful from exposure to high-status examples of what our society deems to be beautiful, which are manufactured / amplified by the media / Internet, frequently forming self-reinforcing feedback loops.)
- Beauty is objective (i.e. there is a strong objective / neuro-typical component to what we consider to be beautiful, which can only be deviated from by degree. This is rooted in evolutionary psychology and preferences that have been ‘hardwired’ through selection bias / pressure.)
It is important to note that, in a non-zero-sum conception of their explanatory power, none of the above categories are necessarily exclusive. As in the Nature / Nurture debate, the correct framing of the question is not ‘Nature or Nurture’, but what percentage of explanatory power do we attribute to factors predominantly connected to Nature and what percentage of explanatory power do we attribute to factors predominantly connected to Nurture?
And furthermore, what characterises / shapes the cybernetic feedback circuit between these factors?
In light of the above, Parallax Optics would suggest that, in the domain of facial aesthetics, beauty is predominantly objective. Downstream of objective measures are intersubjective forces, but these largely serve to reinforce our ‘natural’ or ‘biological’ preferences. Downstream of intersubjective forces are subjective preferences, but these are a comparatively weak force – analogous to the vocal inflections of an actor reading a prewritten script.
Outside the domain of facial / body aesthetics, intersubjective forces become vastly more powerful / determinative, even if objective / mathematically derived factors such as the Golden Ratio / symmetry still have a significant degree of influence on the underlying structure of our perceptions.
This is because we haven’t been pre-programmed by millennia of evolution to give two shits about aesthetics in art. In fact, aesthetics in art are merely a bastardised offshoot of our evolutionary developed ability to identify and attract the best reproductive mate within the scope of our means / power. This is why the art world was ripe for aesthetic revolution in the 20th century, and why concepts of beauty in contemporary art have been so radically reconfigured in its wake
Meanwhile, despite the best efforts of feminists / progressives, notions of who is beautiful have, by comparison, proven relatively intractable – for example, ancient Greco-Roman depictions of human beauty map quite precisely onto contemporary ideals.
That’s a bit of background. Now let’s focus on some of the hallmarks of good facial aesthetics, the aspects which are so fundamental to attraction they can only be deviated from by degree, before getting whooped by the ugly-stick…
So, what are the most significant factors determining good facial aesthetics?
There is a large amount of interesting technical theory and literature on the subject, as well as lots of informal insights from Red Pill websites, which Parallax Optics will proceed to draw on from memory, in scatter shot fashion.
Facial features can be assessed first in terms of their overall quality. It is possible to have a ‘good’ nose (e.g. straight) or a ‘bad’ nose (e.g. crooked / bulbous). The same is true of one’s eyes, ears, mouth, chin, etc. Every facial feature can be isolated and graded according to its quality relative to an objective ‘ideal’, which usually approximates to the average for one’s race.
Each facial feature is positioned relative to its surrounding facial features. Positioning is key to facial balance / harmony and if facial features are well positioned relative to one another this can go some way towards compensating for shortcomings in the absolute quality of individual features themselves.
The most attractive faces will naturally be comprised of high-quality features, harmoniously positioned relative to one another, in accordance with the normative dictates of one’s race and gender. They will also be relatively symmetrical, which connotes youth and is a sign of relatively low generic / mutational load and therefore a good fitness indicator.
Now, genetics / epigenetics / hormones in utero / puberty are all certainly important in terms of determining facial growth and attractiveness. But it’s important not to underestimate the influence that environmental and behavioural factors can have on achieving optimal aesthetic facial development, within the scope of one’s genetic means.
Once your genetic inheritance has been determined, developing facial attractiveness largely depends on achieving optimal (or at least sufficient) horizontal face growth. Horizontal face growth / depth depends on good oral posture and breathing through your nose instead of your mouth. ‘Mouth breathing’ is an unfortunate habit many children fall into especially if they are prone to colds / allergies and their nasal cavity becomes blocked. Breathing through the mouth causes the mandible to grow vertically, which depresses the horizontal development of the maxilla. This leads to a ‘long’ face, weak chin, sunken eyes and lack of definition in the cheekbones, as well as an overall reduction in facial symmetry, which are all detrimental to the overall attractiveness of the face.
Now, let us return to our initial claim, which is that our conception of ‘good’ facial aesthetics is primarily objective; only intersubjective within relatively defined objective boundaries; and only weakly subjective, expressing preference within tightly controlled objective and intersubjective boundaries.
Let us consider just one feature of a male Caucasian face – the chin.
In its ideal position, the chin projects 1-2mm in front of the lower lip, which connotes a desirable level testosterone exposure / hormonal development and is therefore a hallmark of masculinity. It implies genetic fitness and capacity as a provider within the ancestral environment, which is still, ultimately, the context against which such attributes are evaluated.
In comparison to female faces, male faces can tolerate relatively low levels of symmetry, but the forward position of the mandible, and therefore the chin – relative to the E-plane – is of particular importance. For example, a man can ‘get away with’ a relatively large / crooked nose, but it is virtually impossible to maintain even a medium level of attraction with a recessed chin / weak lower mandible, since this undermines the foundation of the facial structure and connotes ‘weakness’.
The fact that the difference of a few millimetres in this specific area is a necessary – though not sufficient – condition to determine capacity for attractiveness in a male, strongly indicates the presence of strict objective boundaries determining what can / can’t be considered beautiful in the domain of facial aesthetics. This observation is clearly born out in real life examples, such as the archetypal ‘square jaw’ of comic book heroes / lead actors in Hollywood, as well as the cosmetic surgery industry in Los Angeles that has grown up around it.
Therefore, intersubjective forces can ‘massage’ / ‘distort’ our perceptions of human beauty. But the underlying objective / neuro-typical criteria of valuation remains undiminished since it can only be edited on the same evolutionary timescale along which it was originally encoded. Consequently, ‘fashions’ in facial aesthetics are a relatively weak force – mere contingent changes, delimited by objective boundaries – which would be rapidly overwritten, should they deviate too far from objective standards, once the conditional factors / social context enshrining them shifted, as it inevitably would.
In light of the above, Parallax Optics would contend that the online, self-obsessed, selfie culture of Millennials is leading an ever-increasing number of young people to become more self-aware / critical of their looks. In our image-obsessed culture, they are deconstructing their facial aesthetics and frantically searching for the underlying objective factors, which determine their inherent level of attraction.
This presents an opportunity for the Right.
Just as with Game, the discovery / presentation of an underlying set of objective rules governing perceptions of beauty, in particular where these factors had previously been partially obscured by progressive “beauty is subjective” / “a capitalist construct” bullshit narratives – is potentially a powerful Red Pill – which could be employed as part of an overarching strategy to convert / return young people to a more objective relation to the Real.