Against All Hate

Behold, the vicious misanthrope,
The hater of the differences in skin,
The hater of the differences in kin,
The hater of what others would believe,
The hater who would hate without reprieve.

Behold, the vicious misanthrope,
The hater of the greatness man achieves–
When faced with man-made beauty only grieves–
The hater of the makers and the wealthy,
Who’s only happy when you are unhealthy.

Behold, the vicious misanthrope,
Who sees man as a plague upon the earth,
Denying humans have inherent worth,
Repulsed at all mankind has built–
Who wants us to dissolve in shame and guilt.

The ones who want us full of guilt and shame,
Inventing reasons humans are to blame–
From poverty to wealth and exploitation
To laziness, defenders of the nation–
This is the vicious misanthrope.

The nihilist denying life has meaning,
That value, values are a lie–those leaning
On nothing for support would dare deny
All beauty, justice, truth–say they’re a lie–
This is the vicious misanthrope.

You lovers of mankind, the rich and poor,
The individual–open the door
Of greatness, creativity and life–
Deny life’s haters, creators of all strife–
Oppose the vicious misanthrope!

Shelley, Spontaneous Order, Beauty

Rereading Percy Bysshe Shelley’s Hymn to Intellectual Beauty, I noticed in the first stanza that Shelley seems to be describing a spontaneous order:

The awful shadow of some unseen Power
Floats through unseen among us, — visiting
This various world with as inconstant wing
As summer winds that creep from flower to flower, —
Like moonbeams that behind some piny mountain shower,
It visits with inconstant glance
Each human heart and countenance;
Like hues and harmonies of evening, —
Like clouds in starlight widely spread, —
Like memory of music fled, —
Like aught that for its grace may be
Dear, and yet dearer for its mystery.

This certainly sounds like Adam Smith’s “Invisible Hand,” or Hayek’s Spontaneous Order. Most striking is that Shelley connects this to beauty:

Spirit of Beauty, that dost consecrate
With thine own hues all thou dost shine upon
Of human thought or form, — where art thou gone?

In connection to this, I would direct you to my posting where I connect beauty and spontaneous order.

Perhaps it is not surprising that the poet who said that “Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world” in his A Defense of Poetry should have had this insight.

On the Prophets of Beauty

In ancient times the prophets were the wise —
They saw into the unity of things —
There’s nothing human they could not surmise —
They promised people but eternal Springs.

In modern times the prophets only know —
But knowledge brought a power and a call
For specialty, diversity to grow —
But somehow people felt it brought the Fall.

And now the time has come for prophets who
Preach beauty — wisdom, knowledge both combined —
To unify our senses with our reasons,
And show how old and now create the new,
So in this wealth humanity can find
Appreciation of all of the seasons.