I saw something yesterday that set me to thinking. It was something I really did not ask to see. Well, let’s put it this way: it was something I would rather not have seen. It was something that having seen it, I still do not understand. I was in the dressing room of our local health club when I saw it. What “it” was- was thong underwear. The wearer was a woman of perhaps 45. The scene was not pretty. I mean, if she had had a mirror at home that could have shown her a back view, it is clear to me that she would not have worn them in the privacy of her home let alone to the health club. And what is the point of them? They have got to be uncomfortable. A cleavage is one thing… if you are the type who has one and wants to use it for some sort of advantage. After all, one can see a cleavage from a distance. It might be what attracts a man to a woman and ultimately what enables him to learn what a fascinating, educated person she is. But thong underwear??? The only person who is likely to see it is one who’s already pretty committed to the process and by then it really shouldn’t matter.
And then I started to think of all of the dumb things that women do to make themselves “attractive.” They style and color their hair, they buy expensive clothing, they get tummy tucks and facelifts and breast augmentation. They put on makeup and perfume. They learn how to be “beautiful” by reading magazines like “Glamour,” “In Style,” “Shape,” “Vanity Fair,” and “Allure.”
And then they complain that men only want one thing! That no one appreciates them for their brain!
Well, people, I have a proposal. Let’s start over again. Let’s revalue women in a different way. Let’s talk about real human values. How about kindness? compassion? caring? creativity? How about understanding? concern, selflessness, optimism? Why shouldn’t women develop their ability to understand, to teach, to experiment, to invent? How come we don’t emphasize that our daughters learn to nurture, support, encourage, and achieve? And… why can’t we teach these things to our sons?
Why aren’t there magazines that tout the values that are the least susceptible to the ravages of time and accidents of nature, those that reflect the essence of the human being? Can a disabled person act in a beautiful manner? Can an old person have charisma? Can a terminally ill person give the gift of kindness?
In the realm of real values, worth is timeless and non-contingent. In a place where there is humanity to be shared, those with character can share it. In a place where comfort is needed, it can come from old and young, wise and slow. Beauty, then is much much more than skin deep. Beauty is taking our Divinely given soul and developing it in ways that will help others and improve the world