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The Draw of Beauty

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  • The Draw of Beauty

    What difference does beauty make?

    Link

    -----

    What role does beauty serve? Letís plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

    Last week I didnít blog due to the Thanksgiving holiday. We had someone who was super generous to us who paid for Allie and I go to the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville. We stayed there from Tuesday night to Thursday morning. We went on a boat ride in the hotel there and also went to the ICE program which had the movie A Christmas Story done in ice sculptures followed by a beautiful nativity scene done in ice.

    The boat ride involved going through the hotel where there were several waterfalls and exotic plants. Our guide told us about so many of them and we were able to easily ride down the river that is inside the hotel. All of this leaves me thinking about the role of beauty.

    We could say that all of this beauty is a draw to the customers and that would be something because there is no functional role to all of this other than that. Having a river in the hotel with exotic plants and waterfalls doesnít improve the function of the hotel. It could possibly be said it creates more expense and leaves some other needs for the hotel that have to be maintained.

    Yet this expense is probably worth it because it draws so many people in. We have this idea that itís a waste to focus on making things beautiful. Think of the responses often given to the building of a magnificent cathedral, the one Bill Maher gives in Religulous. Couldnít this have been given to the poor? Whatís the point of all the grandeur and beauty?

    The purpose is to draw us into the beauty of God. It is to leave us with awe. This is something I think we have missed in many of our churches today. I get that not everyone is going to come to a church thatís designed like a cathedral. I do think though that if we are presenting God, we need to make Him as beautiful as possible with what we have.

    Consider also how this works with the opposite sex. Aside from men who are gay, we normally donít say, ďThat is one good-looking guy. I want to get to know him better.Ē It is what we say with women. How many guys have wanted to get to know a girl and it has been started solely by her appearance? This is something that women know, but I donít think they fully utilize to their advantages.

    If youíre a single woman wanting to marry, let your beauty be a draw, because it will be, but donít share all of that beauty until a wedding night. If a man is not willing to pursue you to that point, then he does not really want you for you. He wants your body mainly and heís not willing to go the distance to prove he loves you.

    For married women, you have a great power to enthrall and motivate your husbands. Even after decades of being married, many men are still enthralled by the beauty of their wives. I have been married nine years and the beauty of my own wife is still brand new. As someone with Aspergers, for years, people tried to get me to change my diet and I refused to budge. Allie did it and she didnít even have to try. Why? Beauty. She is a motivation.

    Letís face it. If guys werenít attracted to women, we really wouldnít bother. We have to change so much of who we are and spend so much money and give so much of ourselves over and over. The relationship a man has with his wife is radically different from any relationship he has with a male friend. Why do we do it? Beauty. We want that beauty.

    Our society knows this well. This is why we have a make-up industry. Beauty sells to people. Now Iím personally not a big fan of make-up, although there was a time recently Allieís eyes were quite stunning with some, but some guys are. I also remember one time Allie wanted to get a dress that was on sale at Wal-Mart. I waited outside of the dressing room while she tried it on. When she came out, my jaw just dropped immediately. This was my wife? Seriously? She looked like she walked right out of a fashion magazine and it was incredible.

    Maybe all this beauty doesnít help the woman in any other way, but it does help her draw a man who will love her for her. Doubtless, it doesnít really start that way, but it does change over time. Most of our loves start with selfish reasons. We want the other person for ourselves for some reason. In time, the habits we do to get that person end up changing us. Through the use of these habits, I now say easily I love Allie more than I did on our wedding day. Love has been a practice. It has been a choice.

    Some people deny objective beauty. This is a ridiculous position. It means a stick figure drawn by a small child is more beautiful than the Mona Lisa. It means a pile of dung is beautiful just like a bouquet of flowers is. It means that nothing in this universe is truly beautiful. It is just an idea we have created and imposed on the universe. If such is the way we think, then be consistent and say nothing is truly beautiful, but I suspect many of us donít want to do that.

    I regularly give thanks for beauty. Being a married man, I particularly give thanks for the beauty of my wife and think that when God made women, He knew what He was doing and did it good. Beauty serves to draw us in and may it draw us into the beauty of God.

    In Christ,
    Nick Peters

  • #2
    Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post
    What difference does beauty make?

    Link

    -----
    What role does beauty serve? Letís plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

    Last week I didnít blog due to the Thanksgiving holiday. We had someone who was super generous to us who paid for Allie and I go to the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville. We stayed there from Tuesday night to Thursday morning. We went on a boat ride in the hotel there and also went to the ICE program which had the movie A Christmas Story done in ice sculptures followed by a beautiful nativity scene done in ice.

    The boat ride involved going through the hotel where there were several waterfalls and exotic plants. Our guide told us about so many of them and we were able to easily ride down the river that is inside the hotel. All of this leaves me thinking about the role of beauty.

    We could say that all of this beauty is a draw to the customers and that would be something because there is no functional role to all of this other than that. Having a river in the hotel with exotic plants and waterfalls doesnít improve the function of the hotel. It could possibly be said it creates more expense and leaves some other needs for the hotel that have to be maintained.

    Yet this expense is probably worth it because it draws so many people in. We have this idea that itís a waste to focus on making things beautiful. Think of the responses often given to the building of a magnificent cathedral, the one Bill Maher gives in Religulous. Couldnít this have been given to the poor? Whatís the point of all the grandeur and beauty?

    The purpose is to draw us into the beauty of God. It is to leave us with awe. This is something I think we have missed in many of our churches today. I get that not everyone is going to come to a church thatís designed like a cathedral. I do think though that if we are presenting God, we need to make Him as beautiful as possible with what we have.

    Consider also how this works with the opposite sex. Aside from men who are gay, we normally donít say, ďThat is one good-looking guy. I want to get to know him better.Ē It is what we say with women. How many guys have wanted to get to know a girl and it has been started solely by her appearance? This is something that women know, but I donít think they fully utilize to their advantages.

    If youíre a single woman wanting to marry, let your beauty be a draw, because it will be, but donít share all of that beauty until a wedding night. If a man is not willing to pursue you to that point, then he does not really want you for you. He wants your body mainly and heís not willing to go the distance to prove he loves you.

    For married women, you have a great power to enthrall and motivate your husbands. Even after decades of being married, many men are still enthralled by the beauty of their wives. I have been married nine years and the beauty of my own wife is still brand new. As someone with Aspergers, for years, people tried to get me to change my diet and I refused to budge. Allie did it and she didnít even have to try. Why? Beauty. She is a motivation.

    Letís face it. If guys werenít attracted to women, we really wouldnít bother. We have to change so much of who we are and spend so much money and give so much of ourselves over and over. The relationship a man has with his wife is radically different from any relationship he has with a male friend. Why do we do it? Beauty. We want that beauty.

    Our society knows this well. This is why we have a make-up industry. Beauty sells to people. Now Iím personally not a big fan of make-up, although there was a time recently Allieís eyes were quite stunning with some, but some guys are. I also remember one time Allie wanted to get a dress that was on sale at Wal-Mart. I waited outside of the dressing room while she tried it on. When she came out, my jaw just dropped immediately. This was my wife? Seriously? She looked like she walked right out of a fashion magazine and it was incredible.

    Maybe all this beauty doesnít help the woman in any other way, but it does help her draw a man who will love her for her. Doubtless, it doesnít really start that way, but it does change over time. Most of our loves start with selfish reasons. We want the other person for ourselves for some reason. In time, the habits we do to get that person end up changing us. Through the use of these habits, I now say easily I love Allie more than I did on our wedding day. Love has been a practice. It has been a choice.

    Some people deny objective beauty. This is a ridiculous position. It means a stick figure drawn by a small child is more beautiful than the Mona Lisa. It means a pile of dung is beautiful just like a bouquet of flowers is. It means that nothing in this universe is truly beautiful. It is just an idea we have created and imposed on the universe. If such is the way we think, then be consistent and say nothing is truly beautiful, but I suspect many of us donít want to do that.

    I regularly give thanks for beauty. Being a married man, I particularly give thanks for the beauty of my wife and think that when God made women, He knew what He was doing and did it good. Beauty serves to draw us in and may it draw us into the beauty of God.

    In Christ,
    Nick Peters
    Kind of a weak argument. The Romans and ancient Egyptians had the same philosophy as their empires were in full decline.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by whag View Post
      Kind of a weak argument. The Romans and ancient Egyptians had the same philosophy as their empires were in full decline.
      And?

      Comment


      • #4
        I have been mulling over the idea of whether objective beauty exists for the last couple of weeks in light of it being raised as a topic in Facebook apologist circles. The obvious question is what the standard is. The one thing that arises feelings of the numinous in me is music; not so much visual art. However, the music that most resonates with me is what my wife (classically trained in music, no less) insists is objectively dissonant and repulsive. I like progressive/symphonic metal. If she is right, what am I to make of my own reactions?

        However, I cannot look at a fractal pattern that naturally appears in nature and dismiss this as anything other than beauty endowed in nature by God.
        "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

        Comment


        • #5
          KG. What would you make of it if you had different moral positions strongly on a certain issue? No moral truth. Strong differences can exist. I'm not a musician so I can't really comment on the music, except that Allie and I radically differ on music. I did just do a Mentionables Podcast and Clinton Wilcox spoke some on music and he's on Facebook as well.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post
            KG. What would you make of it if you had different moral positions strongly on a certain issue? No moral truth. Strong differences can exist. I'm not a musician so I can't really comment on the music, except that Allie and I radically differ on music. I did just do a Mentionables Podcast and Clinton Wilcox spoke some on music and he's on Facebook as well.
            That was the same rejoinder that I saw raised last time this came up but I simply don't think the analogy works. The Bible does define morality in an objective sense so from a Christian perspective we can demonstrate that, presupposing the truth of the worldview that is. The same cannot be said for beauty.
            "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

            Comment


            • #7
              Then do you think you live in a world where there is truly no beauty, not even in God?

              Comment

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