“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”
-Margaret Wolfe Hungerford
It’s getting close to almost a full year since I integrated myself within this wonderful community and wonderful family known as Daily Wisdom Words. This post is a celebration to that. When Samantha first approached me to write the Wisdomology section of this site, I was very grateful for the opportunity and kind of resurrected my love for writing, especially non-fiction writing as I had not done that since my days as a journalist nearly 10-12 years ago.
Since then, I would like to think that this section has grown leaps and bounds, not because of me but because of the wonderful family here at DWW as well as all the readers who have supported me by reading my posts as well as other posts on this site.
With that, I am re-posting one of my earliest articles but with added information. The original post was about looking beyond superficial attributes when discussing beauty. Back then, my posts were much shorter and much more broad. Today, I hope to add a little bit more specificity to the original article.
Without further ado, here is the article about redefining the meaning of beauty in the 21st century:
Today’s quote was a proverb first written by author Margaret Wolfe Hungerford in 1878.
Unfortunately, as time passed and pop culture became more and more inundated with stereotypical definitions of what beauty is, Hungerford’s expression, sadly, has been put out to pasture. And especially today, with social media sites taking precedence over anything else on the internet, the superficial elements tower over everything else when it comes to beauty.
Think about this. With each new photo editing app that comes out, the number of features to “fix” your selfies increases. In a sense, these apps are reinforcing the idea that you’re not good the way you look. Because if you were, what would be the need for so many fixing options? I can understand the need for features that fix the lighting, like brightness and contrast but why the need for thinning, reshaping your eyebrows and changing your skin color?
I can certainly relate to looking presentable for a picture but do we really need digital plastic surgery? Perhaps it’s time now to not only resurrect the significance of Hungerford’s proverb but also add to it.
Not only is beauty in the eye of the beholder but beauty is first born from within and then manifests itself in a more tangible manner on the outside. Before we look at anyone’s face, eyebrows, weight and/or attire, look at their personality first. How are they interacting with you?
And this is especially relevant today when there’s far more conflict on a multitude of topics on social media than the original intention; to connect with like-minded people and hence, grow.
There is such a thing as physical attraction when it comes to romantic feelings for someone. And there is nothing wrong with that. But beyond those initial sparks, and within platonic relationships, the emphasis on beauty needs to be on what we are on the inside. Good looks can go a certain distance in confidence. But at some point, personality and heart will take over and hold dominance over who you are for the rest of your life. Perhaps it’s time to acknowledge that more often and more openly.
What does beauty mean to you? By what attributes do you judge people when you first meet them and why? Do you agree with the points emphasized in this article? Why or why not? Share your thoughts and experiences by commenting below on our secure servers.