Starting in the late-Victorian period, American society began to question the existence of beauty. Overtime our culture accepted the notion that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” Despite warnings by writers such as CS Lewis (Abolition of Man), Christians had adopted this idea by the mid-1950’s. Early on this move was seen as freeing to the individual. In fact, the loss of objective beauty led many Christian to adopt a reactive and statist solution to cultural problems. Traditional Christians became what they were accused of being. There are good philosophical and theological reasons to return to objective beauty and even better cultural ones.
John Mark Reynolds, Ph.D. is the President of The Saint Constantine School, a K-college classical Orthodox school in Houston. He is also a Senior Fellow of Humanities at The King’s College in New York City, and a Fellow of the Center For Science and Culture at The Discovery Institute. He is the former provost of Houston Baptist University and was the founder and director of the Torrey Honors Institute, the Socratic, great books-centered honors program at Biola University. He received his Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Rochester, where he wrote his dissertation analyzing cosmology and psychology in Plato’s Timaeus. Dr. Reynolds is the author of numerous books, including When Athens Met Jerusalem: an Introduction to Classical and Christian Thought (2009) and is the editor of The Great Books Reader. He is a frequent blogger and lecturer on a wide range of topics including ancient philosophy, classical and home education, politics, faith, and virtue.
John Mark attends St. Paul Orthodox Church in Katy, Texas with his parents, brother, wife, and children. An avid technophile, the lights, speakers, and computers in his house can all be controlled by his phone, to both cool and disastrous effect. He loves Disneyland, Star Trek, and the Green Bay Packers. John Mark and his wife Hope have four homeschool-graduate children: L.D., Mary Kate, Ian and Jane.