Sunday, December 8, 2013

Being Pretty isn't IT

We were hanging out awhile back and you asked, all full of frustration, "Well, what do you want then?" I had been talking about how uninteresting I find perfectly sculpted physiques to be due to a longtime exposure to beautiful, built gay men. My answer at the time was, "I don't know," which was a lie. I do know what I want, but explaining it in that moment was beyond me. We were in a bar and I think I had just done a shot of tequila.

The truth is, I want MORE. Feeling a physical attraction to your potential partner is important, I appreciate nice looking things, but I have also become concerned with sustainability. The condition of our physical bodies is highly unsustainable. What is of lasting value is what's between your ears and in your heart, because that's who and what you really are. Being beautiful will take you far, but then what? That is not a train that will help you travel the entirety of your lifetime, should you be lucky enough to age to the point of wrinkling everywhere. What carries you across the time and space of a life well lived is character. Character is what you choose to do with the time that you have, and this matters more than anything else.

Not everyone will require you to be anything but pretty. They will see what's outside and be satisfied. It is not enough for me, dearone. I want MORE from you. I have looked you in the eye. I See You, I've Heard You speak with great depth and honesty. I know what's there and I want it ALL. I want your sadness and fear, your humor and brilliant ideas, your remarkable strength and your vulnerability. I want to see you deeply fulfilled, fully self-realized and authentically happy, no matter what that looks like. Because I love you. I told you I loved you but that I didn't even know what it meant when I said it. It wasn't until I revisited this quote from my favorite Zen master, Osho, that I found something which begins to articulate this feeling:
"What we call love is really a whole spectrum of relating, reaching from the earth to the sky. At the most earthy level, love is sexual attraction. Many of us remain stuck there, because our conditioning has burdened our sexuality with all kinds of expectations and repressions. Actually the biggest "problem" with sexual love is that it never lasts...As we mature, we can begin to experience the love that exists beyond sexuality and honors the unique individuality of the other...This love is based in freedom, not expectation or need."

When all is said and done, it doesn't really matter what you look like. For your professional purposes, I know it does, but I want you to know that you are worth so much more than that. Your body is not the real you, it is a temporary, ever changing home for the you who is timeless and eternal. I understand that because you spend so much time working on your body, this might feel like hurtful devaluing. This is not my intention. I respect and admire your discipline and dedication. You are magnificent looking- I wouldn't have you change a thing.

This is so small of a concern when compared with what you're doing with that magnificent body, though. How are you treating yourself? Are you taking care of your mental and emotional life? Are you speaking your truth and honoring your No? Do you perceive yourself to have great value beyond your looks?

What do I want then, dearone? Everything. Bodies can be fun, beautiful and overwhelmingly sexy, but they are not enough. It is the totality of your infinite being that I'm after. I want to know and love every part of you.

Which is a hard thing to explain in a bar.

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