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I thought this was an easy one when I first read it. Then I started thinking. (Fatal error, I know!)

What do I call my friends? Gorgeous, amazing, confident, complicated, honest, wonderful, strong, funny, lovely, lovable, warm, kind-hearted, considerate, compassionate, caring. Don’t I have nice friends! All of those adjectives I ones I will either own myself or aspire to.

Except one: gorgeous. Not one I think of as belonging to me, now or in the future. But I am beginning to concede that one day I may be able to think of it as part of my future. Just not now.

But gorgeous wasn’t the word. Beautiful is. It’s not a word I like but I’d never really thought about it before. Beautiful is a word I use to describe sunset, flowers, music, nebulas. It’s a word I feel to mean a kind of perfection that only happens in nature or some art forms. When applied to people it tends to refer to a perfect idealised type of beauty without character that I don’t actually like. Or maybe I’m just jealous that I can never attain that, even though I don’t want it.

And yet, that list of characteristics if all owned by one person, would make their personality very beautiful . But I do shy away of that one word.

So I acknowledge the difference between inner and outer beauty and would also recognise that most of the compliments I give are about inner beauty. I do tell people they’re looking good when they are but what I love about my friends is the sparkle in the eyes, the animation in the conversation and their generosity of spirit.

Maybe I’m closer to them then I think.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines beauty as

pleasing the senses or mind aesthetically
of a very high standard; excellent

Chambers define it as

having an appearance or qualities which please the senses or give rise to admiration in the mind

I like “give rise to admiration in the mind”, that is the aesthetic mind pleasing that a flower,  song or landscape can give.

Friends please me in the warmth, love and companionship they provide and that makes the relationship beautiful but I would still find it difficult to call someone beautiful. I will have to try it and see what happens.

So I’m finding this slightly unsatisfactory as an answer but it’s raising my awareness that I have an issue with the word and its meaning. It’s also reminded me what massively wonderful friends I have and how much I love them.

Beautiful You by Rosie Molinary

Beautiful You by Rosie Molinary

Beautiful You, by Rosie Molinary is available at Amazon (click on the picture) and her website is Rosie Molinary

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