Open Your Life to Beauty

By Rev. Joyce Kramer
Open Your Life to Beauty

What beauty have you seen today? Have you watched the sunrise? Have you listened to beautiful music? Have you observed beautiful flowers? There are many places to find beauty—in people, in nature and in things. Wherever we are, we are able to perceive beauty if we are looking for it and are tuned in to the idea of beauty.

Learn to look at all things with the idea of finding something beautiful. Learn to look beyond the appearances to see the underlying splendor.

Michelangelo "saw" the majestic figure of David in the gigantic block of marble that had been rejected as imperfect. So impassioned was he with love for the beauty of the vision he had in his mind that he scarcely ate or slept. He worked feverishly day after day until his chisel finally chopped away all that was not a part of his vision and he released the "imprisoned" David.

Beethoven, walking alone at night, was suddenly filled with ecstasy at the vision of silver moonlight streaming across the rippling waters. As a result of his perception of this beauty, his artistic talent gave us the "Moonlight Sonata," which his own deafened ears could not hear.

The source of beauty is God. "He has made everything beautiful in its time; also he has put eternity into man's mind" (Ecclesiastes 3:11). It is there, within your mind and heart that you must turn to look for the beautiful. God is the source of beauty, and beauty is a spiritual experience.

The early Greeks emphasized beauty above all else. This tremendous love of beauty was encouraged, taught and lived with constantly. Mothers-to-be surrounded themselves with images of beautiful children. They worked to develop in their minds a picture of the child, wholesome and beautiful, healthy and strong. The Greeks also believed in a balanced life of mind and body. They emphasized joy in life and the doing well of what one did. Their artwork shows calm, ordered beauty and color. It was believed that when one surrounded and saturated oneself with beauty from childhood, one would undoubtedly become beautiful within and without.

… The human race is God's instrument of expression, to show forth the beauty and goodness of all creation. … Watch a leaf unfurl. Notice its symmetry, its color, texture and fragrance. Get your senses involved in the perception of beauty. Let yourself enter into the awareness of beauty. Remove your attention from other things frequently and give a few moments completely to beauty.

McDermott wrote: "Nature is the greatest teacher because she demonstrates living beauty. The painting of a tree by an artist may be lovely to behold, but it can never grow new leaves, bud and blossom in the spring or drop its varicolored dress in the fall to reveal the stark beauty of bare limbs."

Your perception of beauty is just that—uniquely yours. Instead of looking for what the artist had in mind, look for your own meaning based on the feelings that are stirred within you. Nothing outside of yourself can be beautiful unless you first feel it within.

… Beauty is essential to the progression of your soul. Move steadily along, increasing your awareness of the inner spark of the divine and thus your perception of beauty. The world will become a much more exciting place in which to enter the deeper and greater world of beauty.

… Cultivate beauty by remembering the source of beauty—God. There is order, balance, harmony and great beauty all around, but beauty is an inside job—inner awareness leads to outer perception. Beauty is a living, vibrant force—your passport to a more joyous life. You are an avenue, an instrument of beauty. Let the beauty of God and God's creation be expressed through you and in your life.

Rev. Joyce Kramer is the minister of Unity Church of Tidewater in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The following was previously published in a free booklet from Unity called Spirit of Simplicity, which is now out of print.