Key Takeaway: How did there come to be a standard of beauty – and who said it has to be thin and white? I believe in true beauty: when you are living out your purpose, when you are living a life of love and of service.
Recently, I came across a BuzzFeed article that showed in a snap how Philippine beauty has changed or developed over the last 100 years. Some of the commenters felt that the so-called standard of beauty has conformed to Western perceptions of such – including things such as whiter skin. In fact, in retail establishments in our country, most of the beauty products are skin whiteners. This is something that Human Nature is against, as it celebrates natural Filipino beauty (given our climate and ethic characteristics) and does not carry any whitening products at all.
Why white, anyway? Who said that white is better than brown or black? I do not recall anything about Caucasians being given dominion over other races, nor about God making one human ethnicity superior to all others. Why has white skin become the standard of beauty globally? Why not make your innate beauty shine?
“Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.” (Greek proverb)
The saying above is, in a way, true for me – and integral to higher purpose-living and individuality. I wonder what has happened in history that there has become a standard of beauty – one that leads people to do drastic things just to reach that standard. Supermodels have to be stick-thin and are placed on diets so intense that their health plummets and they actually miss out on eating food they love (all for the sake of “looking perfect” for a camera).
But what is beauty, really? Beauty is not about reaching a certain standard, many ways thereto be damned. Beauty is about YOU, about YOUR sense of empowerment and confidence. Beauty is how YOU carry yourself, how YOU conduct yourself everyday as you live your purpose. As a wonderful social entrepreneur friend and mentor of mine, Noreen Bautista, said, “If she exudes confidence, then that is the best style ever. Confidence that does not provoke, confidence that does not exclude, confidence that respects, and confidence that empowers.”
Beauty, therefore, is tied to your individuality. It is as unique as your higher purpose is unique. Beauty is you at work living out your purpose, you being responsible and conscious, you being of service. True beauty is when you are being you, when you are living what you were meant to live. True beauty is exuded in your life of love, kindness, and service.
As we unwind at the end of a long week, let’s reflect on this. As we relax and go out this weekend, let’s remember that it’s not about chasing after lofty, ungrounded principles of looking good, but about looking good through the way you carry yourself, the life you live, the purpose you embrace.
Have a purposeful weekend!