I do not know whether the people who hold such views (that is to say the great majority of writers on resthetics) further maintain, on analogy with what I have just said about truth, that the axiological value of beauty is wholly in the beholder's mind. They seem to me to speak with a divided voice; but many of them would say that the value of beauty is entirely in the fine and high experience of beauty althoug;h that experience implies a relation of the admiring mind to tlle thing that is admired. Others, when they say that the value is relative, may mean that it is a relation between mind and thing.,
(c) Omne ens est honum. In this proposition there is apt to be cloudiness regarding the relations between maintenance-values and axiological values, between fulness or strength of being on the one hand, and excellence or fineness of being on the other. "Perfection", in a large assemblage ()f traditional arguments, was equated with fulness, development with aggrandizement, reality with opulence of characteristics. That was characteristic of the Ontological Proof in nearly all its forms. Thus according to Spinoza, perfection, reality and power ,vere identical and were also identical with goodness in one (atld, as he thought, in the most accurate) of its meanings. Thus also Descartes (and Kant too) regarded man's reason as his strongest medicament. Their "reason", they thought, was literally the principle of their lives, their rational conceptions caused the continuance of their existence. Queen Christina's comment is very well known. "His oracles have let him down", she said when Descartes died of
pneumonia at Stockholm at the age of fifty-three. In Kant's case the oracles were rather more careful. The tiny desiccated frame of that philosopher defied dissolution up to its eightieth year. But four score years is a brief space, and Kant's powers had waned before the end.