The Path of Contemplation

  1. Lemma
  2. Путь созерцания
  3. Russian
  4. Saprykin, Dmitry
  5. Theological works of scientists and engineers - Co-existence
  6. 1997
  7. Rauschenbach Boris [Author]. The Path of Contemplation
  8. Синтез двух систем познания академика Раушенбаха. : Synthesis of the two cognition systems by academician Rauschebach
  9. Logic - Icons - gnoseology
    1. The article by Academician Rauschenbach is devoted to contemplation as a path of knowledge, a way to comprehend the truth, primarily to the contemplation of icons. The famous physicist, founder of astronautics, turned to study icon world while investigating the perception of space by human eye and developing optical instruments for observing the docking of spacecraft.

      The author of the article examines two ways of cognition: the path of logical thinking and the path of contemplation. Logical thinking possessing obvious advantages has, according to the academician, an essential flaw: it is always “a prisoner of the particulars under consideration”. Contemplation gives a picture, although devoid of details, but possessing the property of completeness. The unconditional advantage of contemplation before logical thinking, consists, from the author’s point of view, in enabling direct cognition not only of direct but also of the higher meaning and does not need to be commented upon.

      The icon, says Rauschenbach, should be "beautiful", because it reflects as well as the nature the beauty of the Creator. The need to display both meanings (literal and ascending to the higher being) to one contemplating the icon required the masters to use a number of specific techniques. It might be necessary to visualize the events invisible to the physiological sight of man; it might be necessary to cover in a single act of contemplation several different events united by the higher essence of the represented; finally, various deformations of the depicted objects might be needed, if it seemed to be useful for conveying the higher meaning presented by the icon. The author represents these techniques to be applied by the example of four icons: "Crucifixion", "Assumption", "Nativity of Christ" and "Meeting".

      As through the path of contemplation one knows the world, the author argues, the icon appeals to reason, meditation, comprehension of the world, unlike the paintings of modern times that appeal to the senses, call for empathy. Simultaneous transmission of direct and higher meaning of the event cannot, as the author shows, be carried out by methods born in the Renaissance. In this respect, icon painting is, undoubtedly, higher than the Renaissance painting, which plays a predominantly illustrative role, concludes Rauschenbach.