"Oh, look at that rag-picker, he's so 'stinky' and shabby." "See that woman's face, it's scarred. She looks so terrible." "That lady's albinism gives me the chills." "He's so stupid I'm making fun of his looks and he doesn't even understand." "That boy's dark circles are so deep; I can bury someone in them." "Poor little baby, he's born so dark, how will someone ever marry him?" "The bald girl looks creepy."
The list is incomplete.
What? We all make such comments looking at some stranger. Because, we feel we're perfect? Flawless? Oh, at least our faces don't have a flaw, or we think so. Well, our skin looks pure and perfect.
Now comes the big question. Are our hearts flawless? Are our souls pure and perfect? What do we know about random strangers? Maybe, that rag-picker looks shabby because he doesn't have money to buy new clothes like all of us do and he doesn't get to bathe daily, but he still cleans up all the mess that we've created. Maybe, the woman's scarred face that has been judged by us so insensitively, is the result of some heinous acid attack. Maybe, the lady's albinism is an incurable disease which already has made her miserable. Maybe, that boy you just made fun of, has understood it, but is silent because he's used to it. Maybe, those dark circles are the result of his late nights, burning the candle, as it were, because he wants to make his family proud. Maybe, that little black baby boy grows up into a wonderful man with the best of hearts and a lovely girl marries him just because she admires his inner beauty, unlike others. Maybe, the ‘bald’ girl you just grimaced at is a strong cancer survivor.
You know what? We’ve just not grown up.
Well, if we can't change our goddamn thoughts and appreciate other peoples' virtues, let's not at least hurt them over and over for which they are not responsible. Maybe, their drawbacks could one day become their strengths and leave all of us jaw-dropped? Perhaps.
Hope this happens.
FALSEHOOD & HATE
Having said this about ‘judging others,’ we have goaded and evolved ourselves so much into this falsehood that we have started judging and hating our own selves. Now, don't get me wrong — judging our own personalities and criticising ourselves is absolutely fine and productive, but what is fallacious is our repulsiveness, or disgust, towards ourselves. We have gradually started to feel insecure with almost everything that we have — our bodies, our faces, our hair, our skin, our appearances, our figures, our lives, and our souls. We have definitely forgotten the fact that life is a gift and each day of our existence is a blessing. Instead of cherishing such priceless and divine blessings, we despair about earthly, mundane, materialistic qualities that matters not to us after a period of time.
External appearances and superficial beauty is significant to everyone these days. But, time and again, we refrain ourselves from knowing the fact that this outer beauty can be deceptive. It is also being worshipped so much that people have started losing faith in the real, natural beauty. Hence, the glut in cosmetic surgeries, laser treatments, and tonnes of make-up over our face.
Not all of us are against such practices.
Make-up is more than a basic skill, it requires so much of effort to be a 'pro' at it. But, what one fails to understand is its requisition. What it actually produces is just insecurity within us. Undoubtedly, beauty is beauty. It can't be natural versus artificial. This certainly can’t be questioned. It shouldn't matter too. Because, there's so much more to define a person than just their face and appearance.
BEAUTY IS DIVINE
Think of it all — the beauty of divinity of a loving soul who doesn't fear anyone, but the Almighty; or, beauty which is so gentle, just like a snowflake. Soft, fragile and silent; also just beautiful. A beauty which is so pure, so tender, that even the mildest of its touches can mend broken hearts and fill love into them. True beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. Everything is beautiful. Every being is beautiful.
“No matter how the faces are
Whether pretty or full of scars
Crooked, obnoxious, ugly, creepy
All are endowed with internal beauty.
The sun, the moon, or the star studded sky
Hills, or valleys, or the gentle breeze
Planets, oceans, trees, asteroids
Their beauty who can ever avoid?
Or, snakes, aliens or wild elephants
Pirates, gypsies or the little ants
If we don't look at things beautifully
Even the most beautiful would stay ugly.”
NOT JUST A WORD
Beauty is not just a word. It's a feeling. It's also emotion. It is abstract all right, yet we see it everywhere. It can't be judged [although we often prefer to], and it can't be determined. It is omnipresent. It can't be avoided. It can't be uprooted from the ones who possess it. It is born through compassion that we have for ourselves and for others. Such beauty is virtue exemplified.
What transcends, yet appeals to our thinking is the form of beauty that flows right from our hearts and minds. Shallow traits haven't warmed anyone’s blood and never will. Because, inner beauty which lies within us is like eternal bliss. It won't fade away with time; it won't wither too. And, most importantly, it will always stand strong within us, kindling the fire to keep our minds enlightened and our souls illuminated.
This is beauty, in word and deed. It has that pristine, veracious potential to astound us — and, in the process, elevate the true meaning of life for all of us too.