Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Acronyms, Idioms, Wikipedia.


McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

The very first human art we know about may have been inspired by religion. The cave paintings of ancient humans, such as those at Lascaux, France, discovered in 1940 and dating to approximately 30,000 BCE, inspire awe and wonder. What source of pigment and light did they use? Why travel a mile down into the bowels of the earth through dark, dank, dangerous passageways to produce these masterpieces?

Cave art was possibly used in religious rites associated with hunting cultures. If they were offered to the gods of the hunt, as some archaeologists believe, the cave paintings would have been religiously inspired works of art, as opposed to the art of personal adornment. Since then, religion has continued to inspire art of all kinds.

Bach, Handel, Beethoven, and Mozart are four composers among hundreds whose work is performed weekly in places of worship and regularly in secular concert halls as well. Michelangelo's paintings, not least the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, attract thousands to Rome each year. Literary works like Ben-Hur, about a Palestinian Jew battling the Roman empire at the time of Jesus, still inspire Hollywood to make epic films. John Milton's Paradise Lost is required reading at colleges and universities. The Japanese form of Haiku poetry is a distinct part of Zen Buddhism, allowing bright but fragile images to pierce through a very strict literary form. Hindu goddess statues, even a very ancient figure in the lotus position, are still being uncovered by the archaeologist's brush.

Because religious-inspired art was an early form of human expression and appears in all cultures, a good argument can be made that art is what makes us human, separates us from the rest of the animal kingdom, and provides a window through which we see that which is "other," spiritual, or eternal. In short, it can be said that art is a medium of expression by which we experience divinity.

The Religion Book: Places, Prophets, Saints, and Seers © 2004 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.


(Action Real-Time Strategy) See MOBA.
Copyright © 1981-2019 by The Computer Language Company Inc. All Rights reserved. THIS DEFINITION IS FOR PERSONAL USE ONLY. All other reproduction is strictly prohibited without permission from the publisher.
References in classic literature ?
And the art of payment has the special function of giving pay: but we do not confuse this with other arts, any more than the art of the pilot is to be confused with the art of medicine, because the health of the pilot may be improved by a sea voyage.
'Tis the privilege of Art Thus to play its cheerful part, Man in Earth to acclimate And bend the exile to his fate, And, moulded of one element With the days and firmament, Teach him on these as stairs to climb And live on even terms with Time; Whilst upper life the slender rill Of human sense doth overfill.
For love is the enemy of haste; it takes count of passing days, of men who pass away, of a fine art matured slowly in the course of years and doomed in a short time to pass away too, and be no more.
Such, then, are the differences of the arts with respect to the medium of imitation.
And it is to be noted that it is the fact that Art is this intense form of Individualism that makes the public try to exercise over it in an authority that is as immoral as it is ridiculous, and as corrupting as it is contemptible.
It is only a few of the scions of our noblest and wealthiest houses, who are able to give the time and money necessary for the thorough prosecution of this noble and valuable Art. Even to me, a Mathematician of no mean standing, and the Grandfather of two most hopeful and perfectly regular Hexagons, to find myself in the midst of a crowd of rotating Polygons of the higher classes, is occasionally very perplexing.
Joe and Delia became enamoured one of the other, or each of the other, as you please, and in a short time were married--for (see above), when one loves one's Art no service seems too hard.
This magnificent art produced by the Vandals has been slain by the academies.
In every gallery in Europe there are hideous pictures of blood, carnage, oozing brains, putrefaction--pictures portraying intolerable suffering--pictures alive with every conceivable horror, wrought out in dreadful detail--and similar pictures are being put on the canvas every day and publicly exhibited--without a growl from anybody--for they are innocent, they are inoffensive, being works of art. But suppose a literary artist ventured to go into a painstaking and elaborate description of one of these grisly things--the critics would skin him alive.
The rise of this reputation is one of the most romantic incidents in the history of art. But I do not propose to deal with Charles Strickland's work except in so far as it touches upon his character.
By these experiences his inborn passion for the beautiful and the grand in Nature and Art was early developed.
To be near the goal while the enemy is still far from it, to wait at ease while the enemy is toiling and struggling, to be well-fed while the enemy is famished:--this is the art of husbanding one's strength.