On the importance of Beauty
I would like to speak a little about the importance of beauty. I do not mean the drive for some form of distorted perfection that the media or Zeitgeist of the moment demands us to inspire to, and encourages us to pursue at the full cost of our happiness if not our health. This actually only leads to an increase in the blindness to beauty, in the ‘green eyed monster’ of jealousy and envy and the hopeless, endlessly painful path of comparison amongst each other and within our hearts.
No, I am talking about the beauty of the miracle that is your body: your senses, skin, the magic of your organs and the way they function, the orchestra of hormones and delicately finely tuned communication of chemical compounds, the majesty of hair, of voice and body fluids, and the mystery contained in the spiralling of your DNA . I am speaking into the wonder of the aliveness in your body, the profoundly erotic love affair that existence is having with it self right here in you right now.
The deep mystery of our bodies, our physical form, is a way into experiencing yourself as the reflection of the Lover Goddess at any moment, and The Goddess of Love is Beauty. Beauty is Love manifested in physical form. So often we do not have the eyes to truly see and honour our beauty, though we find it easy to see it in the landscape of rocks and fields, rivers and trees all around us, still somehow we are blind to the beauty of our own ‘sacred earth’, our body.
The lack of importance given to the true meaning of beauty actually physically hurts our being, as we continuously dishonour our own sacred nature and form.
It is the grace of the Goddess which gives us the ‘eyes of love’ with which we see the good in the world, our own being or each other. As in when we are first in love and see our beloved as the most beautiful, the shining one, a flawless soul in a body that is beautiful and desirable to us. Beauty opens and softens our heart. This is because of the ability of beauty to make us feel and become more alive, as it draws more of our soul into our body and heart so that we may feel more connected to our physical presence, to our life’s purpose and to that which is outside of us.
With the opening of our heart, our soul feels its wings of possibility and wants to soar. This gives us greater ability to feel empathy, to be compassionate, to love. Beauty is one of the great gateways through which more soul enters our physical body. There are other gateways as well of course: grief, pain, love, orgasm, birthing and death to name a few. Beauty is a particularly delicious gateway, and open to us all at all time if we choose to have the eye to see, for beauty is everywhere, even if not always ‘pretty’.
“Where shall you seek beauty, and how shall you find her unless she herself be your way and your guide? And how shall you speak of her except she be the weaver of your speech? Beauty is not a need but an ecstasy. It is not a mouth thirsting nor an empty hand stretched forth, But rather a heart enflamed and a soul enchanted. It is not the image you would see nor the song you would hear, But rather an image you see though you close your eyes and a song you hear though you shut your ears…. Beauty is life when life unveils Her holy face. But you are life and you are the veil. Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror. But you are eternity and you are the mirror”.
Khalil Gibran, The Prophet on Beauty
When the Goddess of Love touches us, beauty manifests all around us and opens us to the mysteries. This is why we go soft and fluid, more at ease with the flow of life when we ‘fall in love’ and why we are moved by beauty. We feel more, become more alive when we are in the presence of beauty, Her mirror. It is the root of human longing to share this experience of the opening of the heart in love that expresses in ways as varied as the Valentine’s card, the Taj Mahal, Mona Lisa and the most profound love poetry ever written.
The best of these expressions capture and communicate the beauty of love so that all who meet it can experience the feeling also. And the world becomes a little more enhanced with beauty, a better place, with each such creation.
This is also why the deliberate destruction of beauty or the creation of that which is ugly is so ‘soul destroying’ to us as a species, and to our heart-full place in our interactions with the natural world. For example, one only has to be surrounded by the deliberate monstrosity and sameness of Soviet architecture to feel the closing of the sensual aliveness of the heart. This, more than any social ideology, is precisely the purpose of this way of building, to numb the population. After all, it is a well-known patriarchal strategy which teaches that those who are hardened, afraid or less open, less alive in their heart, are so much more easily manipulated and controlled. When we feel less, we are much more likely to BE less as well, especially less compassionate, and therefore more capable of unkindness and cruelty.
The Goddess of Love allows for compassionate and loving behaviour by opening us through Her beauty, so that we can feel such kindness and goodwill we belief our self to be in love with the whole world.
Let us start by honouring the beauty of our body, just as it is, in this moment, and thank it for all it’s beautiful ways it connects us to life, dances with sensual experience of what it means to be alive as a human being, enhances our experience of aliveness through pleasure and joy, and shines with the beauty of our uniquely individual expression of the Devine manifested in physical form.
Allow yourself to see the beauty that is you, and notice that not only your heart can relax a little and your mind can let go a little of the old story of ‘not good enough’, but that the world around you actually begins to become a more beautiful place because of it.
With love and blessings, Katinka Soetens
Extract from the e-book: Teachings of Rhiannon, part one of Sacred Sexual Priestess Empowerment, available on Amazon.