The Hard Work of Being a Sensualist

“Live in the moment” has been the advice of sensualists from Epicurus to Camus. Peak experiences, moments of extreme pleasure or catalyzing emotion, can nourish life especially when not burdened with a guilty past or an anxious future. Wine lovers and culinarians (“foodies” in the vernacular) are sensualists or at least we strive to beContinue reading “The Hard Work of Being a Sensualist”

Epicurus On Wine Education and Its Perils

Posted initially at Edible Arts The ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus not only gave his name to the enjoyment of food and wine. He thought deeply about the nature of pleasure with some lessons that we wine lovers probably ought not forget. The highest aim in life for Epicurus was to achieve a state of mindContinue reading “Epicurus On Wine Education and Its Perils”

Is Life Like a Work of Art?

I’m a great admire of philosopher Bence Nanay’s work on perception and aesthetics. But I am less enamored with this brief article  he wrote for Psychology Today about the thesis that life ought to be lived as a work of art. Nanay is skeptical of this idea. Taking a quote from Robert Musil as hisContinue reading “Is Life Like a Work of Art?”

The Silent Art

We often think of imagination as an ability to invent fantastic images or create original patterns in media such as musical notes, words, or images. But I think this misses the heart of imagination. The most important role of imagination is a capacity to create new possibilities, to create new structures of experience and discloseContinue reading “The Silent Art”

The Art of Gastronomy

Some forms of art, such as painting and sculpture, are relatively fixed and static anchored by the stability of vision and the persistence of visual objects. Other more musical works unfold in time or, like performances and environmental art, change with the passage of time. Where does gastronomy fit? With the temporal arts, I think.Continue reading “The Art of Gastronomy”