Wednesday, April 27, 2016

What is beauty?

(Caveat: I am by no means saying I am a handsome man, nor someone who is an authority upon the true standards of beauty.  This is a work of opinion, however much research it is guided by, and in the end, I am responsible for my own words.)

“It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness.” LEO TOLSTOY

“Youth is happy because it has the capacity to see beauty. Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.”  Franz Kafka

Sandro Botticelli The Birth of Venus
As defined by Wiktionary: BEAUTY
Noun:  beauty ‎(countable and uncountable, plural beauties)

The property, quality or state of being "that which pleases merely by being perceived" (Aquinas); that which is attractive, pleasing, fine or good looking; comeliness.

Brigitte Bardot
I don't know what beauty is other than it is.  I've been trying to write for hours and I know what I like, and know that the world's view of what is, is not the same as my own.  So, instead of bullshitting, I am going to post some images, and some quotes, and shrug my shoulders.

"We have exiled beauty... the Greeks took up arms for her."
Albert Camus

“Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.”

I believe that Celine Dion is a great singer, who sings songs I don't like, and is not at all pretty, but is a very beautiful human.  She seems like a person with great compassion for others and kindness.  So when people call her beautiful I can accept that.  But they don't usually just limit it to that.  They say she is beautiful regarding her looks.  Beauty to them, therefore, is not a constant, definable, pure, objective standard, instead it is a throw away term.  This happens a lot when a popular and talented celebrity is famous.  Media equates popular with beautiful, and beautiful does not equal successful, that just isn't the case.  It is nearly the same with the morons who will tell you popular equates quality.  It does not, not by any means. It equates what it does, that someone likes it.  That is not quality.

Elizabeth Taylor
So, in this windmill tilt I go, like Don Quixote before me... Beauty is not popularity, and it must have some sort of way of determining it beyond likes on a facebook page...  I am not suggesting that I am the king of determining beauty.  I haven't a clue.  I only know what I find to be beautiful, and what I find to be ugly as sin.

This poem is my standard of soft ethereal beauty.   Nothing really compares to it.

"She Walks in Beauty
By Lord Byron

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
Thus mellowed to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impaired the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o’er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express,
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

And on that cheek, and o’er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!"

I was told at a time, long ago it seems now, that it seemed that I preferred blondes.  But, that really isn't true.  I was told by another person that I seemed to like tiny girls, with elf like features.  Not true.  I think my wife is beautiful, and she is red-haired and well bosomed.  She had been in my office looking at my wall art and smiled.  I said what.  She said in all your paintings that you have framed there is one constant.  I said, oh?  She said, there is a knight, and a red-haired woman who looks like me.  I am guessing that is my standard of beauty.

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