Sculpture and painting have the effect of teaching us manners and abolishing hurry.

What did Ralph Waldo Emerson mean by:

Sculpture and painting have the effect of teaching us manners and abolishing hurry.


“Sculpture and painting have the effect of teaching us manners and abolishing hurry,” is a profound statement that emphasizes the transformative power of art. In essence, it suggests that engaging with art, such as sculpture and painting, can shape our behavior, influence our attitudes, and encourage us to slow down and appreciate the world around us.

When it comes to teaching manners, this quote suggests that art can guide us in developing empathy, respect, and understanding. Art often tells stories, conveys emotions, and presents perspectives that we might not encounter in our daily lives. By engaging with these narratives and viewpoints, we can learn to appreciate diversity, understand different experiences, and develop a more respectful and empathetic approach to others.

As for ‘abolishing hurry,’ this part of the quote speaks to the power of art to encourage mindfulness and presence. In our fast-paced world, we often rush from one task to the next, rarely taking the time to truly engage with our surroundings. However, art demands our attention. It asks us to slow down, to observe, to reflect. In this way, art can help us to break free from the constant rush and develop a more mindful and appreciative approach to life.

Applying this idea in today’s world or in personal development, we might use art as a tool for fostering empathy and mindfulness. This could involve engaging with art in a more intentional way, such as visiting art exhibitions, studying art history, or even creating art ourselves. By doing so, we can learn to appreciate different perspectives, develop a more respectful approach to others, and cultivate a more mindful and present approach to life.

Furthermore, in a world where hurry and rush have become the norm, causing stress and burnout, art can serve as a therapeutic escape. It can help us slow down, reconnect with ourselves, and find balance. Whether it’s taking time to appreciate a painting, immersing ourselves in a sculpture, or expressing our emotions through creating art, these activities can serve as a form of meditation, helping us to find calm in the chaos.

In conclusion, the quote suggests that art is not just about aesthetics, but it also has the power to shape our attitudes, behaviors, and overall approach to life. It teaches us to appreciate diversity, encourages us to be present, and offers a therapeutic escape from the rush of our daily lives.

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