Friday, February 03, 2006

Beauty is only skin deep

The other day our daughter was acting and doing cute things, as usual at this age, and I ran to get my camera, as usual for me. As I started snapping pictures she immediately called her grandmother, who is visiting, to join her. Her grandmother's immediate reply "I am not looking good. Why do you want me to spoil the picture. Go ahead by yourself". But, my daughter vehemently insisted and grandma reluctantly joined. I finally ended up with great snaps of both of them.

The lesson from my daughter: Beauty is only skin deep.

She doesn't see the outer beauty of her grandma. For her, beauty comes from the person's intellectual, emotional and spiritual qualities. In short, she equates the personality to a person's beauty. Which is what everyone should do. Today's media paints a different picture. It splatters the so called beautiful models day in and day out on the TV, in Ads, in movies, etc. Which makes me wonder: of all the actors in Bollywood, it is easy to find ones that are not so 'physically attractive' but great at acting. But, we seldom find Bollywood actresses who are short on the beauty end and still great in acting. Hmmm. That speaks a lot on the Bollywood audience. But, I am digressing...

I always dislike sharing photos of friends and family with people who don't know them. Consider this scenario: You are visiting a friend/family member and they start showing off pictures of their friends' who you don't know anything about. You see a guy with droopy eyes, and the first thing that pops to your mind is that he snorts drugs or is into drinking. But, for a person who knows the 'personality', they 'see' a great ball player, a great friend in need, a great cook, a childhood friend who loves to crack jokes, etc. You get the point. So, whenever people visit us, all they see is slides of our adventure, places we visited, or projects we have done. Only rarely do we share pics of people, and that happens only when the audience knows the people in the pictures.

'Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder'. What is considered (media-suggested) as beautiful in one country may not be so in another. This is true right here in America. The US media portrays tall and skinny (almost to the point of mal-nourished) women as models of beauty. Go South for a few hours, and you see a completely different portrait of beauty. In Mexico, a little chubbier women are portrayed as beautiful. We are 'trained' by the environment around us to 'see' beauty.

My daughter is still at a stage where she is not yet influenced by the environs, and I want to keep it that way as far as possible.

For her, I am the most handsome, smartest, loving, caring father in the whole world. I am not going to argue with her. For all you (and the influenced world) know, I may look like the ugliest toad in the whole world.

Her grandma is the most beautiful, intelligent, loving, caring grandma in the whole world. Why should we argue with her. We should learn from her and go back to our roots, and accept it whole heartedly and bask in that glow.