Black, orange, white, blue velvet fuzz dipping, floating, wandering as if lost, but accurately finding flowery food. I would like, no love, to look so beautiful while gorging on sweet stuff. There are some glamorous iridescent flies, green, blue waves of color, but they don’t look great finding food. Their legs and heads remind me that they’re insects and that they eat icky stuff. I forgive butterflies when they land on excrement. I do. I believe that they just made a mistake in their airy, fairy way. And despite proof that they can be very exact in their landings and focus, can fly for 1000s of miles, butterflies are butterflies and not besmirched or given credit for their technological accomplishments.
Understanding this mental block, this predilection to forgive beauty its flaws and ignore its cunning helps me to see the errors in my wisdom. I’m not sure that I can actually overcome my bias but at least I know that its there. Visual beauty doesn’t have to become uglier, it just doesn’t get a pass for behavior. The chasm between what something actually is in its entirety and my perception of it can get closer, more real, more actual. And I can still be delighted by a trait, a treasured vista.
Or maybe butterflies just get a pass, I mean really, they’re butterflies.
What about other things?
There’s some reasons to be biased toward beauty; vibrant colors, balanced even features, clear loud tones are all indicators of health and physical capability. In order to function well, efficiently and chronically, form is important. Otherwise wear is uneven and causes pain and illness. But beauty tells us nothing of character or kindness, even though in ‘Disneyland’ beauty usually, especially young beauty, is kind. Unfortunately fairly often young beauty isn’t kind, it just is, and beauty of spirit definitely isn’t a visual thing.
What do you think? Is beauty forgiven too often? And given too much credit for kindness and not for capability? Or really – love those butterflies and blooms!