A Painful Beauty

We have a habit, especially in English, to use words that are very powerful and evocative in very simple and minimalist ways, which often means the word can lose its meaning. I have often thought about this idea that we are actually quite dramatic in our use of language these days, in a thankless quest to appear more intelligent, to broaden your vocabulary not for the benefit of yourself, but of everyone else. 

There seems to be this overwhelming need to be clever in modern society, be it amongst peers, in a social circle or throughout the public consciousness. We need to be…more. In particular when it comes to the enigma that is the word “beautiful”

In particular, the idea of “subjective beauty.” Based on my perceptions beauty in society is something quite simple, in how we can walk down the road and perhaps see a woman walk past that gives you some level of desire and then come out with “Dam she’s beautiful” or words to that effect. Nothing more than a passing thought a lot of the time, that moment where you appreciated the physical attributes of a woman and carried on minding your business. 

Its here where inevitably arguments can brew- “I don’t see women as objects i see them as people too.” Don’t mistake what I’m writing here as an attack on you personally, i don’t know you. It’s from this assumption of an attack that makes me sure of this poisonous mentality that it’s wrong in any way to appreciate the physical attributes of a woman, the features you find sexually attractive. Its almost taboo to talk about it and is something we have all done-  thought a woman was sexy so gone up to her in and tried to make conversation.  Not just in that circumstance but this obsession in society these days that attractiveness and connections don’t just come from physical attributes is true, but it’s almost like we should be ignoring them altogether. 

The point is, at no point throughout that last paragraph or so did i use the word beautiful. Beautiful i think is too dramatic of a word to simply understand and desire the physical attributes of a person because it means so much more than any of us understand, especially off of a first or single encounter. Beautiful is a word that cannot be defined or understood, a word like intimate or love. These words as i write them actually mean very little. The problem is encountered where they are used in a “minimal” way. When we use a powerful word to make a minimal point, it can create a powerful reaction like no other.

This reactions brings with it the belief of importance, for we all want to be important to someone. The issue is when this feeling of empowerment and importance comes from a place where it was never intended. And so on. As far as i have witnessed society has given men, women and young adults this idea that if your going to be beautiful you need to be able to do A), B), C) and so on. You carry on this way until you get to the point where you’re not really living your life, enjoying the random moments of total wander and brilliance- because you’re too busy ticking items off a list. Its as if we are all distracted by this fairy tale idea, as men about being a charming prince meeting the perfect princess and as women needing to be the “beautiful” perfect princess. When in the end all you’re doing is checking items of a list you’ve been told are the key to you happiness. A list that a lot of the time never has a bottom. 

So this is where the issue of language comes in. We mistake words like “sexy” or “gorgeous” for words like “wonderful” or most predominantly- “beautiful.” Anybody can be sexy, we can meet a standard set by a certain demographic of people and then you are arguably sexy. Beauty is different, it needs pain. Pain is a power that most of us are familiar with, even if we aren’t aware of the power it has given us. Being beautiful isn’t about a certain lifestyle, having a nice car, or having the physical attributes to meet the standards of your social circle. Beauty is so much more complicated than that. You see someone who is “perfect” and you see someone who hasn’t lived and don’t get me wrong i’m sure they have their rhyme or reason for it- but to me that doesn’t muster feelings of wander and beauty. To be beautiful is a horrible process, painful, brutal and often so very tragic. 

Written in the myths of beauty are words never said, or too much said, tears cried endlessly or not at all. Beauty is wishing we had taken that chance when we didn’t, that fleeting moment where we let fear control us. Beauty is that moment where you decide “fuck it” and do something while your rational mind is screaming “NO WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?!?!?!”  

Beauty is a life lived and a love lost. Beauty is confidence in the face of adversity and in the fear of being lonely. Beauty is looking at that person in the mirror in the morning and being dam sure you are the one to dictate how your day goes, not anyone or anything else.

It’s taking back control, from the past, from anyone and everyone. It’s you being OK with being you, whatever that means.

Thats what makes people beautiful. 

Anybody can be sexy. Thats not actually that difficult. 

Beauty has a pain to it- and that’s what gives beauty its power. 

There’s nothing more important. 

Yours, with love as always

DR x

@jakeboulterx

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