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Sunday, February 11, 2007

Beauty Is


She taught me many lessons…a great many lessons. My high school sweetheart did. One of the most profound and life-changing things she taught me (one that I will always be grateful for) is what beauty is.

It’s not that she actually intended to educate me. I’m not even sure she herself understands what she taught me. Yet, on one hot, shimmering summer day, she taught me what beauty is.

* * *

Imagine, if you will, a young man lying on a beach. It’s an almost blinding July afternoon. He’s propped on his elbows, enjoying the sight of his friends and the friends of friends of friends frolicking.
He gazes squint-eyed upon the young, bikini-clad females with curiosity…pleasure…admiration.

He sees his former sweetheart advancing from the water. They had parted company five, maybe six, months before. She’s strongly backlit by the white-hot sun. The water smiles and laughs with diamond jewels glistening. He sees her almost in bas-relief, carving her haloed way through the sultry air.

There’s no question about it. She is stunning. She stands at almost six-feet. She is shapely, full bosomed, fertile hipped, statuesque, heavenly, free…and the water glistens on her radiantly tanned skin. Remember Bo Derek in “10”? Remember that scene when Bo comes streaming, steaming, out of the ocean? Well, Blake Edwards filmed that scene almost a decade after this afternoon of mine…even so...
the scenes are identical.

Really.

I was lying on a blanket, propped on my elbows, skin burning, staring at her vision, when it hit me like a thunderbolt: “She’s not beautiful anymore!”

Huh? She was ravishingly beautiful seven months ago. She was the most beautiful woman in the world…then. Today, in a scene worthy of a Botticelli, she approaches from the water…I could almost hear the angels sing. But she was no longer beautiful. Striking? Yes. Erotic? Yes. Desirable? Absolutely! Beautiful? No. Not to me.

On that one, shimmering, blinding, dazzling summer day, I learned something vital, something fundamental. I learned that beauty is a construct of the heart, mind and soul. The eyes will always see, but the vision in the mind’s eye is the only one of consequence. When we love, we see whom we love as beautiful…radiantly beautiful. It may or may not be an objective “truth.” Less likely so, as the years and life’s travails exact their toll on the body. But we remain ever beautiful...

in our lover’s true eyes.

Love sees what it most wants to see. Love desires to see only beauty. I, myself, am content to let love see what it will.

* * *

I wish only to love more…enough so that I see only beauty.

* * *

16 Comments:

Blogger Roly said...

Jonas, I feel like I'm missing something in my life now. I wish I had seen this type of beauty. I unfortunately have not.

Sun Feb 11, 06:19:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Roly, you are young...in the fullness of time, you will.

Sun Feb 11, 06:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jon, how great that you learned this lesson so early in life. I didn't learn it until I was in my 40s, causing me much needless grief! Better late than never, eh? Cheers!
kent

Sun Feb 11, 09:00:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Well, we can never predict when our teachers will come, can we?

Better late than never? Yes. Always yes.

Thanks for stopping by, Kent.

Sun Feb 11, 09:12:00 PM  
Blogger Sunny Delight said...

Jonas, Your life lessons are always such simple truths, that we often overlook them.

When we love the true nature of someone, their comeliness increases. Several times in my life, I have remarked on the beauty of a woman friend, and received replies of surprise from those who do not know her. I know her from within, I love her, thus when I look upon her, I see the beauty beyond the mere physical.

Sun Feb 11, 09:30:00 PM  
Blogger Green-Eyed Girl said...

The journey from objective to subjective...and back to objective is a strange one. Sometimes when you come out the other side, you feel you've taken a walk through insanity. But love is insanity.

Mon Feb 12, 08:14:00 AM  
Blogger CHIC-HANDSOME said...

good picture

Mon Feb 12, 02:21:00 PM  
Blogger Sally-Sal said...

When I love a man, I see what my heart feels. What a beautiful post!

You always write so eloquently. Thanks for sharing :)

Mon Feb 12, 05:28:00 PM  
Blogger ever_trying said...

Love both the post and the picture which accompanies it. How fitting. Excellent point you're making here, and I feel like I know what you mean :)

Mon Feb 12, 09:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see beauty. So much beauty.

~S~

Tue Feb 13, 05:05:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

My dear Delight...simple truths are about all I can handle. Complex truths simply go way over my head.

You may be right, my little imp, love could very well be insanity. But then, I always intended to die crazy.

Thanks, Ms Sally-Sal!

Oh, ET...so glad you dropped by! Thank you for the kind words (Botticelli thanks you, too).

I'm not surprised, you see beauty, -S- ...it's all in the eye of the beholder!

Tue Feb 13, 10:35:00 PM  
Blogger Heidi the Hick said...

beautifully said!

Thu Feb 15, 06:52:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

I'm glad you enjoyed, Heidi. Thanks for stopping by.

Thu Feb 15, 07:47:00 PM  
Blogger anna said...

Excellent post - beautiful even. :)

My husband thinks I'm beautiful - so much so that he thinks just about every man and woman who gives me attention wants to jump my bones. I'm flattered that he thinks I'm so beautiful, but I also know he's a little off with his perception - at least in the way he thinks others view me.

Sat Feb 17, 01:05:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Well, Anna, I guess there's perception...and then there's perception.

Uh oh. I'm veering perilously close to what may be complex truths...confusion's sure to follow.

Sat Feb 17, 02:44:00 PM  
Blogger Sharon said...

iiiiiiiii

Mon Feb 19, 12:48:00 PM  

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