English Literature


“Beauty is the illumination of your soul.”
John O’Donohue

Swapnil Sharma

The word beautiful in its truest sense means possessing qualities that are a source of delectation and felicity to the eyes, ears or thoughts, something which enamours the senses or the mind, something unique of its kind. Au contraire, over the ages, the essence of the word beauty has become evanescent. It seems to have become associated with negative connotations marked by the intellections of factitious, phony and ersatz manifestations. All that glitters is not gold and yet more often than not, our definition of beauty gets confined to anything that seems superficially attractive no matter whether it has any value or not. As a result, we fail to perceive the essentiality of this very word.

‘Beautiful’ is an amalgamation of multifarious shades of abstract and concrete ideas. We all have our disparate notions about being beautiful or considering something as beautiful. Being happy is beautiful, being comfortable in your own skin is beautiful, being generous is beautiful and having a pure heart and soul is perhaps the very spirit of beautiful. However, the sad part is that many a times we objectify this concept when in reality it is purely a subjective matter. For me, being beautiful is not just about how one looks on the outside; rather beautiful is all about being beautiful on the inside. I believe that anyone who has a beautiful mind is a beautiful person because when a person thinks beautiful, he/she does beautiful. This nine letter word has a much deeper significance than what we are able to fathom.

‘Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.’ This statement aptly portrays the canvas on which we delineate our ideas of beauty. Our eyes are the canvas and our mind is the brush which paints the idea of beauty in a way that seems the best to it. Per contra, assaying beauty is not just limited to the eyes. Like I said above, when the mind is beautiful, everything looks beautiful. Confucius said “Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.” – Now we know why. Since, we have narrowed down our perception about the aforesaid abstraction; it has led to degeneration of the many ancillary notions associated with it. Superficiality is just a façade. Sadly, we treat this façade as a reality.

Almost every day, we come across instances of body shaming. Have you ever thought why few people mock others about the way they look? And why do we need their validation? Well, this is because of our shallow mindedness and poor conditioning of our interpretations of beauty. The society we live in has hemmed in our minds the pretentious ideas of beauty which we abide by, without taking into consideration the why and the how. Judging a fellow human being defines us and not them. It shows the mentality that we own and the thoughts we construct about someone else. So, the better we think of others, the better are we going to reflect ourselves before them and the world will become a beautiful place.

Estee Lauder said “Confidence is beauty.”  Being proud of who you are and how you look, no matter what the world says; being bold, strong and upfront in what you say and what you do; carrying yourself with the utmost dauntlessness and hardihood staring right into the eyes of those who try to put you down and showcasing yourself in the best possible way is beautiful. Be a beautiful mind, be a beautiful soul. It is rare, unique but quintessential to the world. Be yourself. Be you, for you are beautiful just the way you are.

“Beauty itself is but the sensible image of the infinite.”
Francis Bacon