Beauty. We appreciate it. How could we not? We wonder at it. Get absorbed in it. Analyze it, if it’s got a frame around it. But how often do we listen to it? How often do we ask, “What is it trying to get me to hear?” Rather than, “Do I like it or not?”

Beauty does so much more than decorate. It demands. It calls. It asks for commitment. It doesn’t just say “Love and appreciate me.” It says “Protect me! Fight for me!” It steps out in front of us and points to a precious world that needs our help. It paints a picture of new ways of living and declares, “Follow me there!”

It sings, “This world was made for more than work.” It whispers, “Use me to heal.” It pleads, “Nurture a new relationship with me. One that allows me to talk!” So, what is beauty saying to you?

Which question is calling to you? Where is it leading you?

  1. What is the most beautiful thing you ever saw or experienced?
  2. When were you healed by beauty?
  3. What makes a beautiful soul?  What do you do to beautify your own soul?
  4. What did your family of origin teach you about what it means “to be beautiful”?
  5. What parts of life have grown more beautiful as you’ve aged?
  6. Have you ever experienced a “beautiful goodbye”?

Wise Words:

At some point in life the world’s beauty becomes enough. You don’t need to photograph, paint or even remember it. It is enough. No record of it needs to be kept and you don’t need someone to share it with or tell it to.    Toni Morrison in Tar Baby

Under the spell of beauty, we experience a rare condition called plenitude, where we want for nothing.    André Aciman

Beauty is that which glistens on the edges of our yearnings and lures us into the depths of things.    Patricia Adams Farmer

Waking up to who you are requires letting go of who you imagine yourself to be.  Alan Watts

Human beings have a hard time regarding anything beautiful without wanting to devour it.    Barbara Brown Taylor

There is nothing more beautiful than someone who goes out of their way to make life beautiful for others.    Mandy Hale

The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.     Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

In difficult times, carry something beautiful in your heart.    Blaise Pascal

The ability to see beauty is the beginning of our moral sensibility. What we believe is beautiful we will not wantonly destroy.    Rev. Sean Parker Dennison

In such ugly times, the only true protest is beauty.    Phil Ochs

This a wonderful day. I’ve never seen this one before.    Maya Angelou

Themes and resources from Soul Matters, a network of UU congregations.

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