Tag Archives: appearances

Sometimes it’s hard being a woman

obsessed with being perfect

An article I was reading had me thinking a lot about some men’s contradictory nature appertaining to women’s beauty. The writer-a man-was talking about things that men find attractive in women. As I read the article, I couldn’t help shaking my head in disagreement. He reminded me of the uncountable instances I’ve heard men slamming women who have undergone reconstructive surgery to alter some parts of their bodies, just so they can look the part.

‘Fake eye lashes, fake boobs, fake bum, fake nose, fake hair and she wants a real man’, is a phrase I’ve read so many times, posted by guys on social media. Still, these same men want the picture-perfect woman; a woman who has ‘everything in the right place’. I find it amusing;  moreover, these same men will complain when their ‘model-ish’ women order salads when they go out on dates; apparently, the calorie-counting thing doesn’t sit so well with them.

men's ideal woman

The writer of the said article pointed out some things that I-in all honesty-found utterly ridiculous. According to him, men like a woman who-in his own words- is not too short; someone they won’t have to kneel to kiss but one who isn’t a goliath still. To that I beg to ask, what can a woman do to alter their God-given height, other than wear, ‘kill-a-man-heels’ if they are too short or ballet flats if they are so tall? Think, Marissa Cooper from O.C. portrayed by Mischa Barton. One doesn’t choose to be tall/short.

He asked, “Who wants sleepy/tired boobs?” Do I need to repeat what everyone ought to know? That boobs, come in different shapes and sizes. They could be melons, or little gum drops, firm or saggy… they’re boobs regardless. And if they are natural, at some point gravity will take its toll on them.

In my opinion, it’s okay to have preferences, but I couldn’t help sympathizing with the women who read that article and felt like they were being victimized. Didn’t the writer know it’s comments like those that deflate someone’s self-esteem majorly? Men like him say they want their women’s boobs and booty big and firm; yet they still condemn plastic surgery and other temporary enhancers like hip/bum enhancers?

On body size, the writer quoted a guy who said he would want a woman whose figure would make him go gaga. I’m imagining visible love handles wouldn’t be in the mix then? We live in an era where eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia nervosa have become so prevalent. What would keep such disorders at bay if this is how we judge beauty? It might be easy to pass judgment on anyone suffering from any of them, but importantly, one should look at what triggered it.

He didn’t leave out matters complexion. Apparently, many men, even the dark ones prefer light-skinned women. So, where does that leave the beautiful dark women? It is no wonder, nowadays bleaching cosmetics are so rife in the market; a large majority of dark-skinned women are attempting to lighten their skins. Who would blame them if in men’s eyes light is prettier? Still, the same men criticize them for ‘bleaching’… Seriously? It’s a no brainer that at least every woman likes to feel desirable and as it is, not many are confident about their looks. Whatever the case, it doesn’t change the fact that black is beautiful.

And the, oh- so- flawless skin! According to that writer, pimples are a turn off. I can’t blame him he feels that. My only problem is, if that’s the case, why do they still complain when a woman piles on layers of make-up, in an attempt to hide those undesirable flaws?

I almost forgot the infamous wigs/weaves/hair extensions. If I got paid everytime I heard a guy lamenting how he hated these hair extensions, I would probably be featured on Forbes, topping the list of billionaires. If you ask me, it is hypocritical that these said men claim they hate weaves, yet they will be falling over themselves, drooling over Asian beauties because they have natural, long, sleek, flowing hair. It goes without saying that under this circumstances, if a woman’s hair is short she’ll opt for ‘fake hair’ which is obviously long.

men's perspective on beauty

I have absolutely no qualms with guys having their own preferences; I also know what I particularly like in men. My only problem is, they say unreservedly what they find attractive, yet criticize women who go out of their way to ‘meet those high demands’. With such shifting goal posts, I would say it’s hard being a woman sometimes. I particularly empathize with the women who feel victimized by such hollow preferences; women who try to look the part, yet end up feeling condemned by the same people who pushed them to take whatever measures.

Based on these fluctuating preferences, I would suggest that any woman who feels compelled to do anything to modify their looks should do it, not for any man, but for their own personal satisfaction; for their own happiness.

 

 

 

God doesn’t discriminate

In the world we live in there’s so much proclivity for physical beauty. In an average girl’s eyes, a cute guy is one who is tall, and bears a six pack. In an average guy’s eyes on the other hand, a beautiful woman is one who has voluptuous boobs, an endowed bum and basically has an hour glass shape. That is how we measure beauty. But does God judge the same way?

In 1 Samuel 16: 1-13, The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you continue grieving over Saul? I have rejected him as king of Israel. But now get some olive oil and go to Bethlehem, to a man named Jesse, because I have chosen one of His sons to be king.”

“How can I do that?” Samuel asked. “If Saul hears about it he will kill me!”

The Lord answered, “Take a calf with you and say that you are there to offer a sacrifice to the Lord. Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will tell you what to do. You will anoint as king, the man I tell you to.”

Samuel did what the Lord told him to do and went to Bethlehem, where the city leaders came trembling to meet him and asked, “Is this a peaceful visit, seer?”

“Yes,” he answered. “I have come to offer a sacrifice to the Lord. Purify yourselves and come with me.” He also told Jesse and his sons to purify themselves and he invited them to the sacrifice. When they arrived, Samuel saw Jesse’s son Eliab and said to himself, “This man standing here in the Lord’s presence is surely the one He has chosen.”

But the Lord said to him, “Pay no attention to how tall and handsome he is. I have rejected him, because I do not judge as man judges. Man looks at the outward appearance, but I look at the heart.”

Then Jesse called his son Abinadab and brought him to Samuel. But Samuel said, “No, the Lord hasn’t chosen him either.” Jesse then brought Shammah. “No, the Lord hasn’t chosen him either,” Samuel said. In this way Jesse brought seven of his sons to Samuel. And Samuel said to him, “No, the Lord hasn’t chosen any of these.” Then he asked him, “Do you have any more sons?”

Jesse answered, “There is still the youngest, but he is out taking care of the sheep.”

“Tell him to come,” Samuel said. “We won’t offer the sacrifice until he comes.” So Jesse sent for him. He was a handsome, healthy young man, and his eyes sparkled. The lord said to Samuel, “This is the one-anoint him!” Samuel took the olive oil and anointed David in front of his brothers. Immediately the Spirit of the Lord took control of David and was with him from that day on. Then Samuel returned to Ramah.

Naturally, if it was just some random human being looking to choose a king, they would have picked Eliab; he was tall and handsome. Even Samuel thought he would be anointed as king. And after God rejected him, one would expect one of his other brothers- except David- would be chosen. But God surprised them all when He picked David, who was the youngest and smallest of Jesse’s sons. No one saw it coming.

God made it evidently clear; He, unlike human beings, doesn’t look at the outward appearance; He looks at the heart. Sometimes when one is feeling so downcast, they feel God wouldn’t look their way either because they have committed something they feel guilty about or because they suffer from a certain disease.

The readings above make one thing irrefutably certain; He doesn’t see the blemishes; He doesn’t see the crime committed; He only looks at the heart. If one feels God wouldn’t consider them for a favour, they shouldn’t look at their physical appearance, but their heart. Therefore, in my opinion, we should not judge people by their appearances but by their hearts, just as God, whom we serve does.

‘Don’t judge a book by its cover’; that is an adage I heard when I was very small. It doesn’t apply to books only. If one decided to judge a book’s contents based on its cover, there are numerous books that would be gathering dust on bookshelves, unread. I speak from experience; if the books I’ve read are anything to go by, some of the books with the most unattractive covers turn out to be the most interesting.

love thy neighbour

That said, next time don’t disregard someone just because they don’t match your expectations. They could surprise you-in a good way of course. Give people a chance; let them show you who they are. If you end up dismissing them, let it not be because you assumed them, but because you have interacted with them and don’t like them. Whatever the case, don’t judge; don’t discriminate.

Seventh station: Jesus falls a second time

Seventh station-Jesus falls a second time

Reflection

My Jesus, one of the beautiful qualities people admired in You was Your strength in time of ridicule; Your ability to rise above the occasion. But now, You fall a second time; apparently conquered by the pain of the Cross. People who judged Your appearance made a terrible mistake.

What looked like weakness was unparalleled strength!

I often judge by appearances and how wrong I am most of the time. The world judges entirely by this fraudulent method of discerning. It looks down upon those who apparently have given their best and are now in need. It judges the poor as failures, the sick as useless, and the aged as a burden.

How wrong that kind of judgement is, in the light of Your second fall! Your greatest moment was Your weakest one. Your greatest triumph was in failure. Your greatest act of love was in desolation. Your greatest show of power was in that utter lack of strength that threw You to the ground.

Prayer

Weak and powerful Jesus, give me the grace to see beyond what is visible and be more aware of Your wisdom in the midst of weakness. Give the aged, sick, handicapped, retarded, deaf and blind the fruit of joy so they may ever be aware of the Father’s gift and the vast difference between what the world sees and what The Father sees that they may glory in their weakness, so the power of God may be manifest.

Amen.