This paper attempts to provide perspective in understanding the human being’s aesthetic perception by synthesizing Thomas Aquinas’s thoughts on aesthetic perception, Thomist Jacques Maritain’s philosophy of art, and Umberto Eco’s analysis and expansion of the aesthetics of Aquinas. Based on this understanding, I reflect on the union of body and spirit as a whole and its possible meaning for aesthetic education in our global age. Reflections will proceed along the following three directions: 1) How is the human being as a whole open to the artifact through which he or she encounters the other (the author/the artist) in aesthetic perception? 2) How can this openness in aesthetic perception help one to accept others and enrich oneself through others? 3) What can we do in aesthetic education to cultivate this openness, which plays a meaningful role in our global age?

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