One second, one glance and you’ve already formed an opinion. Not one that dives deeper than the surface, but one that decides whether you want to or not. Of course, it would be a lot easier if an image of our souls could be portrayed as an external for the surface level folks running from the depths of people that don’t appeal to them within seconds of viewing an outer shell.
Dressing nicely will illustrate your income, opening doors for those that can afford it, investing in big, bold brand names that we can somehow feel proud of owning. My favorite quote from Billie Eilish, paraphrased, is, what would it all be for if everyone were to drop dead right this second and you were stuck with all these things that you didn’t even want in the first place? Attracting the materialistic to be in your circle can only last you so long.
Then we have the chosen ones. The facade of beauty that only gets scraped against the surface, roughened and worn thin. The kissed upon the skin that’s so tasteful, some can’t even explore far enough to penetrate and understand the true beauty that person may contain.
In a society that is already good at validating beauty, we have created mediums to really emphasize the problem. We have dating sites where we swipe left and right dependent on the photos we see. We hit follow, like or comment hyping up our girls or guys based off of a picture that was strategically chosen in the face of followers. One of the most upsetting things to me is when I post a video talking about something meaningful to me and I receive comments talking about how “pretty” I look, as if you missed the whole point. Another one that gets to me is when people dm me saying, “I’m in love with you.” Was it the one dimensional side of me that I didn’t mind posting, allowing everyone to see? Unfortunately, our souls have been replaced by images.
I’ve been typing this post for awhile trying to find all the right words. I recently read a part in the book “Self-Realization” that talks about whether truth and beauty are compatible terms. It states that because the truth, no matter what it holds, is always beautiful we should be “attracted to the beauty of truth, but since time immemorial we have been habituated to love of untruth appearing like truth” (Prabhupada, 37). Chasing intangible materials of the world instead of chasing and serving our true purpose in life. We think that if we can drive the nicest cars, live in the biggest homes, wear the most expensive clothes, and buy a new face and body we’ll somehow become more wealthy inside. But like Billie Eilish asks, what will it all be for if you’re the last one standing and none of it was to truly feed your own soul?