Pattis Zoja, Eva
THE GOOD AND THE BEAUTIFUL: KALOS KAI AGATHOS IN SANDPLAY THERAPY
Journal of Sandplay Therapy, Volume 19, Number 1, 2010
KEY WORDS: beauty, ethics, aesthetic, kallokagathia, Kant, Schiller, Kant, relativization of the ego, transcendent function, clinical examples, sandplay, children, child, reaction, indestructible good, Asia, Africa, South America, Sandplay therapy, aliveness states, natural world.
ABSTRACT: In this paper the author focuses on the history of beauty in Western culture; from the ancient Greek perspective ethics and aesthetics were united into one virtue: kalokagathia. The author discusses the current link between beauty and ethics. She addresses the sociological phenomenon of the “broken window”— studies have shown that ethical behavior is influenced by an environment of neglect and ugliness. The author concludes that children— even in environments where nobody has taught them about beauty— have an archetypal tendency to react to violence, evil, and injustice with representations of beauty, as if there were a profound knowledge that in beauty there lives an indestructible good. On a practical and clinical level the author describes how children need beauty and how they make use of it in an attempt to heal themselves. The author presents and discusses cases from China, Africa a South America.