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In my never-ending quest to make sense of a nonsensical world, this is the first post in what will be a series where I try to make logical and emotional sense of things that are viewed in myriad ways throughout the world.
The topic of beauty is a contentious one. It’s said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I don’t go in for clichés, but I do happen to believe that particular cliché is reasonably bang on. How many times has a friend told you they’re attracted to someone only for you to pull that face? And vice versa? There’s always that little thing in mind where we wonder if those closest to us will see the same beauty in a person that we do.
What even is beauty though? I don’t think there’s a set answer to that question. In technical terms, the ‘Golden Ratio’ is what I’ve always understood to be beauty. The Golden Ratio is 1:1.6. The more that ratio appears across the human body the more beautiful that person is. In a beautiful leg, the lower part will be 1 to the upper part’s 1.6. Same with the arms. Same with the facial features. What a person looks like actually has little to do with it because it’s all about this ratio.
Of course, that’s just silly. It’s not unlikely that a person can be in perfect proportion according to the Golden Ratio yet look like the lovechild of Venus Williams and Iain Dowie. Beauty, in a non-technical sense, is very much about what we as individuals find visually, mentally, and emotionally appealing.
I’ve had my taste in women judged quite harshly by some down the years. I’ve never been one to feel drawn in by stereotypical beauty or by whatever FHM tells us are the best-looking women around. There’s always something more to it with me. Usually, one thing will draw me in about a woman. More often than not, it’s been her eyes and/or smile.
There have been those times, though, where I’m unsure myself what has captivated me about the person. In such circumstances, I assume it’s perhaps something in her personality or attitude that grips me. In a lot of cases, my attraction for them fades. In a few, it remains. It remains for years and years. There are one or two for whom the attraction hasn’t gone away at all since my youth.
Aesthetic beauty definitely does come in all forms for me. I’ve found myself physically drawn to a lot of women of varying shapes, sizes, and appearances. Some have been tall; some have been short; some have been slim; some have been large; some have been white; some have been black and all stops between; they have been blonde, brunette, redhead, even multicoloured. When I say I have no physical type I really do mean it. The only thing I really don’t find aesthetically pleasing is when a woman wears so much makeup that it dramatically alters her appearance. I find that deceptive and anything but beautiful.
Beauty, then, is something of a debatable subject for me. It would seem, by my yardstick, you’ve either got it or you haven’t and there’s no criteria for a person to meet. Luck of the draw I suppose (or unluck depending on which way you look at it).
Inner beauty is perhaps more contentious than physical beauty. Where does the line get drawn when it comes to that?
You could say that a person who possesses ‘good’ traits in abundance is a beautiful person. Someone who is kind, friendly, generous, selfless, empathetic, headstrong, independent, and so on. Even this comes down to personal perception though. Some may see a person as kind; others may see them as gullible or even guilty of buying people. Some may see a person as headstrong; others may see them as arrogant and stubborn. So, inner beauty is, again, something a person either sees in another or doesn’t. The same traits some might admire, others might loathe.
I’ve met people with similar characteristics and felt different things about them. I have a friend whose cousin is more or less the same as them in personality; I think my friend is ace, but I can’t really stand their cousin and it’s entirely to do with the delivery of the personality they each possess. You can have the same traits as other people and act them out in totally unique ways.
Couple the above with the aforementioned perception and we’re starting to get a handle on why people seem so different. When you think about it, there aren’t really that many character traits a person can have in comparison to the number of people there are on this planet, so how we all come to be so varied is actually astonishing. Variety in of itself is something pretty beautiful to me.
Beauty has no definite yardstick. It isn’t a thing in the physical sense; it’s more a thought process. It’s something you either see or you don’t. We all exude our beauty in an entirely original way and we all encounter beauty in a manner that is personal to us depending on our tastes. I’ve come across some truly beautiful people whilst blogging and I can say they’re beautiful in ways that no other person I’ve ever come across are. I’ve also come across some rather un-beautiful people and they never lasted too long as an entity in my blogging life. Luckily, they have been few.
My quest for beauty is endless. I think the quest for beauty is endless in all of us. We’re all looking for it in one form or another, whether it be in other people, fauna, flora, or objects. Beauty is everywhere because it’s an arbitrary thing that people either see or don’t see. I think that is pretty amazing. I think that is pretty beautiful!
7 thoughts on “The Way I See It… (Beauty)”
I love this post. So glad I’m able to catch up on your blogs. I’ve missed reading them!
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It’s good to see your name popping up again. I know I’ve missed a few of your recent ones. They’re on my list as ever. Don’t you worry about that 🙂
It’s ok hun. I’ve not been an active blogger for ages. I’m having a total breakdown tonight so my latest one is a total rant 🙈🤪
Another great post Paul. I agree with you. Something I also like to keep in mind is that no matter how ugly the day is, there’s always something beautiful that we can find and appreciate.
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Absolutely. Beauty can be found everywhere if we look deeply enough for it. It isn’t always visible as well.
Hello Paul; I am excited to read your thoughts about beauty. I find so much of our world breathtakingly beautiful that I can identify with your struggle to find a “type” when it comes to the opposite sex. To my mind, the mentality of the viewer affects their perception of beauty, however I would also posit there is a temporal aspect to beauty, as in, the specific circumstances in which we find beauty has as much affect on our perception of it as does the characteristics of the form being viewed. My mood or openness of attitude drastically impact how I might feel about the same stretch of my neighborhood, for instance, on my morning walk. Likewise, I discover new beauty when I reread my favorite books or re-watch my favorite movies; the form has not changed, but my perception has. Beauty isn’t only in the eye of the beholder, it is squarely within us, and it is something, I think, we can bring forth or keep to ourselves. Of course, I advocate for the former, hence my excitement about this new series.
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In hindsight, I would have gone into more detail about beauty as a general thing rather than only really the beauty we see in other humans. There is an awful lot of it out there; after all, we live on the most diverse body in the solar system.
Typically, I agree with what you’ve said. I always do because you’re unfairly erudite. Haha. I think we each possess our own beauty and it’s something we can regulate in terms of how much of it we present. Too many people nowadays rely on cosmetics to enhance their beauty when all they really need to do is display more of the beauty they naturally possess—to themselves more than to others.
Thanks for offering your take. I always smile when I see you’ve interacted 🙂