When we mention about outer beauty, most people may firstly consider it is absolutely a subjective topic because our perceptions of taste and style differ from one another. However, it does not mean that we think other tastes terrible. Although everybody holds a different view on the standard of beauty, I believe that beauty is the consequence of all human’s efforts, which is universal.
In the book Symposium, Plato clarifies his idea of beauty. He believes that the continued existence of any mortal creature does not involve its remaining absolutely unchanging for all the time – only gods do that. Instead, as its attributes pass away and age, they leave behind a new generation of attributes which resemble the old ones. This process is what enables mortal life – a body or whatever – to share in immortality, but immortal being do things differently. everything instinctively values its own offspring: it is immortality which makes this devotion, which is love, a universal feature .
A beauty isn’t attractive in one respect and repulsive in another, or attractive at one time but not at another, or attractive in one setting but repulsive in another, or attractive here and repulsive elsewhere, depending on how people find it . People always start by loving one attractive body and step up to two; from there you move on to physical beauty in general, from there it the beauty of people’s activities, from there to the beauty intellectual endeavors, and form there you ascend to that final intellectual endeavor, which is no more and no less than the study of that beauty, so that you finally recognize true beauty .
Although people always hold different standards of beauty, we can easily find connections of different beauty among different places. I found an interesting article about “Scarification”, a popular tradition in many cultures from the Western Pacific to South America to parts of Africa. “In those cultures, both men and women undergo the painful process of scarification, but women tend to scar their torsos and chest because it is considered sensual and intriguing. Most importantly, the scars are used to mark stages in a young girl’s life, her transformation from childhood to adulthood.
When her scars are finished, she is allowed to marry. To men, women with fashionable scars are more sexually appealing and attractive.” Surprisingly, scarification is not a unique culture in one specific area. When we take a broader view to New Zealand in the Southern Hemisphere, the Maori tribe also practices the civilization of imprinting – Ta moko. Like scarification, Ta moko is the tattoo that sends a message about the aborigines’s social status, political or religious roles, and their genealogy. Likewise, people nowadays like getting tattoos on their bodies, which is a beauty of showing one’s style and personality. This is a trend comes from aboriginal cultures. People like to present beauty in different ways, with their different interpretations. In reality, people’s views towards beauty is essentially the same.
It’s inaccurate that some people think beauty is uncommon because they just don’t get a chance to get in touch with other cultures. Just like what Plato said in Symposium, beauty is all around us. You don’t see it because you didn’t try to find it. Beauty is a cross – cultural concept. Although aesthetic judgements for beauty are highly personal, people can’t deny other’s beauty just because they are unfamiliar with it.
When we argue about whether beauty is universal or not, we are supposed to make a analysis from two angles – space and time. Moreover, Outer beauty is not just about a person’s physical feature, but about all the objects that we can physically see and touch. Under this premise, let’s move back to ancient Egypt and take a look. As we all know, pyramids of Ancient Egypt, as the world’s largest funerary edifices or tombs, are the most famous form of late prehistorical art. Developed from the mastaba tomb, they are one of the most enduring symbols of Egyptian art in general and Egyptian architecture in particular. As we return to the modern France, we can see the Louvre Museum stands in the center of Paris besides the Seine River. Louvre Museum, the landmark of the city Paris, is a structure that constructed entirely with glass segments and metal poles.
The larger pyramid serves as the entrance of the Louvre Museum, surrounded by three smaller pyramids. We can clearly find the connections between these two pyramids, which come from different places and times. I regard this as an inheritance of beauty. people in modern time combine the old beauty with new techniques to create new structures, which fit today’s society better. A real beauty will never be restricted to one particular era or place. I believe that all beauties are developed from the past. Every step people take during the development of beauty is a progress for our human culture and history. we constantly update our understanding to beauty; and giving it new meaning based on the times. Through our processes of inheritance, we give the old beauty a new life. In other word, while adjusting beauty to our new needs, we still keep the core of beauty.
When I visit a museum, I always fall in love with the beauty of antiques, which probably come from thousands of years ago. People will not get tired of a beautiful artwork with a long history. Time is not a factor that prevent us from seeing their beauty. On the contrary, I think a piece of artwork would be more beautiful with the baptism of time, and that is the beauty of classic. An ordinary object can be easily eliminated when time flies. what we preserve at the end is called the real beauty – the goodness, which will not disappear as time goes by. The goodness, as Plato mentioned, it’s a power beyond us and everyone can access.
Ignoring different historical and cultural backgrounds, we are all human beings. There are strong connections between human and the nature where we get attraction from it. As human beings, we evolved to have this aesthetic. That is our inherent trait and instinct. The nature is part of us and we are part of it. No matter how people are stressed in urban areas, as long as we get close to the nature, we all feel released. This is the energy that we get from the nature that helps to cure us. When we look up at the blue sky and see the cotton – like clouds, everyone will think that’s beautiful. There is actually something common to all experiences of beauty. Spaces and times will not cut our relations with nature.
Beauty is always in the eye of the beholder. People from other places may have new understanding on the same beauty. In spite of cultural backgrounds, everyone used to take up an attitude of prescriptive disinterested delight towards certain things. Only when people from every part of the world bring their heterogeneous beauty together, we are able to create the true beauty belong to ourselves. There goes a saying that no two leaves are alike, and yet there is no antagonism between them or between the branches on which they grow. Real beauty is not just one single type – it is universal. It’s our responsibilities to accept and respect the diversity of beauty and assimilate it into our current era; Only in this way we can embrace and get along with universal beauty.