Many of us have long heard the phrase, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”
Recently, some 35,000 people learned they were not beheld.
The 35,000 had applied to become part of a cyber dating service for “beautiful men and women” called beautifulpeople.com.
They were informed they would not be allowed on the site because they weren’t as attractive as they thought. Beautifulpeople.com’s staff dropped the group, and their head shots, from their site, for not being pretty enough or handsome enough to make the cut.
A spokesman for the site said, “We can’t just sweep 30,000 ugly people under the carpet.”
You read correctly. He said ugly. He told 35,000 people that they are ugly.
In a day when the messaging of our culture focuses so much attention on outward appearance and creates so much pressure for young people to live up to a standard of beauty, we have it all wrong.
Americans spend billions of dollars annually on beauty products, fitness solutions, and fashion trends – all to pretty up the external. There is nothing wrong with this, of course. Yet, inevitably, outward beauty fades with the passing years.
Inner beauty never wanes.
The beast of our culture strains to convince us otherwise. From magazine covers, to commercials, to red carpets, to selfies, messaging is clear: if you aren’t beautiful (or perhaps digitally manipulate?), you are in trouble, bud and bud-ette.
Yet, people are like Christmas presents. While the wrapping may be appealing to the eye, the true gift is inside, beneath the paper and ribbons and bows (Yes, you can tweet or retweet this).
Beauty of the heart, beauty of the soul, is a most precious treasure. It endures beyond the effects of time.
True beauty is expressed in unconditional love. It is found in a joyful smile, a peaceful spirit, unwavering patience, kind words, gentle touch, unshakable loyalty, and lives that steer clear of criticism and condemnation. It is expressed in the sacrifice of honoring others above one’s self. In displays of compassion for those in need.
We have heard another common proverb, which tells us that beauty is only skin deep?
Actually, it is much deeper.
And doesn’t need a website.