The Essence of Physical Beauty

Well, I wrote this 2 years ago. Wow, how time flies by. Enjoy this repost. 😉


Ok, so I was at Bengawan Solo Coffee in Taman Anggrek Mall with my friends to talk about my short film project when I saw a very sweet and lovely girl in front of my eyes. She was looking to buy something at a shop, perhaps household utensils or some ceramics.

I couldn’t stop staring at her. Not with the looks of a pervert, of course, but rather of amazement: God, she’s so beautiful. I think she wasn’t what you’d call a very pretty woman, but for me, she had that thing people call inner beauty. Cliche? I guess not. She disseminated her aura of intellectual achievement and strong life principal towards me, so that when I looked at her, all I wanted to do was smile.

She wore an indigo shirt, a bit tight for her fit-but-quite-chubby-figure, and black trouser, plus a black shoes. With a brown wallet in her hand, she also wore a black women’s bag. She had long and straight black hair, pretty medium-sized eyes, and sweet lips. What made me admire her so much from her face was her sharp nose. Like it was sculpted through the hands of the Goddess Aphrodite herself to embody her own beauty.

Then, I decided to give her a name: April.

Why April, you ask. Countries in northern half of the earth celebrate spring season from around February to May, or sometimes March to June. Either way, April has to have lots of flowers blossoming into a wonderful bed of awesomeness. And April is the month where the flowers reach their peak of beautiful existence.

Thus, I named her April. She bought something, but I didn’t know what it was, because surprisingly, after she paid she didn’t bring the thing she bought. Weird, yes. But I didn’t care, because she illuminated her inner qualities to me, into my mortal self.

Right there, when I realized about the mortality of the self, I began realizing the mortality of the flesh. Flesh also has, of course, mortal existence, even shorter lifespan than the self. And human body was an illusion, I suddenly struck, which could disintegrated by the mere condition of life and the nature.

So, my brain started to contemplate about her beauty. I tried to disintegrate her appearance. First, her face. I contemplated her nose only, without the rest of her face. Well, a pretty nose, but normal. Her lips, just an ordinary lips. Her eyes, not a special one, same with the others. Then, I tried to investigate what’s beneath her looks. Her skin. Her nails. Her single hair. Her muscles. Her tendons. Her nerves. Her blood. Her bones. Her cells. Her atoms. All that she was was just a mere mortal existence which will soon rot (assuming soon is tens of years of her remaining lifespan). So, what’s there to admire? She, like any other normal human, is nothing but a non-existence of immortality. She, along with any other humans, is the same. Well, if you integrate her parts of fleshly existence, maybe you’d see or touch her physical beauty. But the very basic of her whole existence is nothing. Nothingness. Subject to vanish.

Her beauty is illusion. The illusion created by her ordinary and normal parts of her bodily form and so did mentally.

With that thought, my brain started to give impulses to my self that, yeah she’s pretty, but it’s temporary.

It made me understand even more of the existence of everything in the world. We love everything we attached to and the pleasant visions we see. But when it grows old and it becomes unpleasant, we intend to resent it, hatred arises. So, all we have to do is trying to not too attached to something which is destructible. When we have no love, we will have no woe. A very dangerous condition attachment is.

And last but not least, April reminded me not to judge the book from its cover. So, I wouldn’t create an attachment to her nor pleasant feelings toward her. Therefore, when she disappeared into the crowd, though I could hear my stupid heart cried her to stay, I didn’t have any regret not to know her.

In the end, I just smiled.

Well, thanks, April.


Wednesday, 27 January 2010


Note: the picture above is called “Among the Blossoms” by Emile Vernon (1904)


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