Daily Beauty, Day #30: Lessons of Beauty

Today marks the end of my 30 day beauty challenge.

In some ways, it is hard to believe. When I first came up with the concept, I had no particular ideas about where it would lead. I thought it would be an interesting exercise and I leapt into it without reservations. As I look back on my past posts, I notice that many of them revolve around abstract, rather than concrete, topics.

Initially, I envisioned myself writing mostly about specific things. But as I’ve progressed along this journey I’ve realized that beauty is abstract. It is about more than material things and about more than merely what can be experienced through the senses. In my opinion, the most beautiful thing about beauty is that it lifts us higher. It takes us out of ourselves so that we can appreciate glimpses of Truth removed from the confines of ego.

I am so grateful to have undergone this daily beauty journey, and I’m grateful to all of you who have joined me. I’ve developed a deepening understanding of several things over the past 30 days. One of them is that a beauty-seeking disposition requires discipline. It was not always easy to sit down and write a post when I was worn out from a long day of classes and school work and other duties. I didn’t always want to write something. But I always felt renewed and refreshed after writing.

We don’t always want to look for beauty. Sometimes it seems far more satisfying to wallow in our misery and seethe with irritation for all the little annoyances and negativities in the world. But when we make the choice to look for and focus on beauty because we know (rather than feel) that it is a life-giving pursuit, we will find beauty, and we will feel happier and more peaceful as a result.

I’ve also learned that beauty is not always found in what is pure. Our human weaknesses are inevitable, and they create a world containing ugliness, and beauty in imperfect measures. This doesn’t have to be a discouraging or demoralizing realization. In fact, this realization can be (you guessed it) beautiful, because it leads us to look higher to the source of beauty, rather than to the shortcomings in its manifestations. Instead of focusing on the problems in what we see, we can look for the good and think about how we can grow from our experience with them.

The last thing I want to talk about is the importance of taking life one step at a time. This is something I’ve certainly touched on, but it was very relevant to me while I was writing these posts. As I mentioned above, I didn’t always feel like writing and I didn’t always know what to write. And yet, somehow, the words would come to me when I needed them and I found a way to express thoughts that became clearer as they appeared on the page. We cannot see into our future or direct our own path. But we can trust that there is a purpose to where we are going and that we will be given the strength we need at each moment.

This is the end of my written daily beauty challenge, but I hope it is not the end of my journey of searching for beauty. I would like to continue my daily beauty challenge in my mind and soul as I try to truly live each moment. There is always beauty around us if only we make the choice to look.