Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder?


Popular wisdom says that beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.

While one can use this excuse to like things that others don’t like I wonder how it is the other way round.

Say you have a pet dog that you really love and find beautiful. While you may have your own reasons to find it beautiful, your neighbors might find it very dreadful.

What it really means that while aesthetics is highly subjective and as an individual you might have your own sense of aesthetics, there does exist something called a general perception of beauty and aesthetics.

Whichever way you see it (pun intended), this general sense of beauty plays a vital role everywhere. Scientific research has shown that people who look beautiful or posses beautiful things are far more likely to succeed than others.

Apparently, if two people get interviewed for a job then the more good looking person is likely to have an edge over other even when the other person might have performed a little better on other parameters.

Let us call this our “aesthetical bias”. Unfortunately, the general sense of beauty is characterized by the kind of things masses are subjected to. Television and media plays a great role in it.

Why the hell am I talking about all this ?

I just had an argument with a friend. The point of our argument was that does beauty really matter ? Is it fair on our part to give an advantage to a person/object for the sole reason that it has got a favorable looks ?

In my opinion it will be really great if everyone can just ignore the looks and judge things on the parameters relevant to the purpose. But the world is not perfect and hence such a case is not possible. Besides I suspect that the process of evolution too is kicking in somewhere.

Beauty can also be associated with desirability. If something is desirable it means it is fitter than the undesirable object. Hence it survives where as undesirable objects perish. So by making that choice we are actually trying to build a more beautiful future.

As far as I am concerned I am deeply biased with beauty, in fact many times I get annoyed with my own behavior.

4 thoughts on “Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder?

  1. Beauty is a characteristic of a person,thing or place similar to intelligence, tall,….etc .So while judging it may be one of the many parameters but it should not be the only parameter .Beauty is inner as well as outer. Many a times judgement based on outer beauty will mislead us but inner beauty never misleads us. The thing which created this universe gave some things more beauty,some things more intelligence……and some other things some other quality.

    Beauty bias can also be seen in our culture , for example while searching for partner. So if its a personal choice outer beauty can be given a weight in judgement. But if it comes for judging on behalf of an organization and if the person who is judging is strong in his principles then he will look for the required qualities or else the organization is in jeopardy.

    What did you mean by” Besides I suspect that the process of evolution too is kicking in somewhere.”?

  2. Thank you Srikanth for your comments.

    What I wanted to highlight in my blog is that there are two distinct perceptions of beauty. One is of individual that is where the individual has more information than what meets the eye. Second is general sense of beauty which is much quicker to arrive at opinion. While we give a lot of importance to things like inner beauty etc. what really matters is the second perception. That plays a very significant role in success of that object.

    My second last paragraph actually described the meaning behind the sentence relating to evolutionary phenomenon.

    The “general perception of beauty” is in my opinion one parameter that determines how fit the object is. So when people chose a beautiful life partner they actually maximizing the chances of beautiful offspring which will eventually lead to a population full of beautiful people. That might sound a bit unnerving but that is what is happening.

  3. But if we select a beautiful life partner only on basis of beauty, relation might not sustain because there are many other things which matter later. Ya now a days thats what is happening.

  4. hello
    i open this post to read as i wanted to know which poet has written these words ‘ beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder’. i have been using this phrase since my teens ,i don’t remember where i must have read it or learnt it . Today i saw this phrase again mentioned by my Master in Daily Reflections ,which i read every day .(pl see the website -( http://www.srcm.org).he did not mention the poets name which made me google it .Thus read the above by Akshar and Srikanth.
    to this i felt like writing a little on it as per my experiences.
    My first marriage was with an very good looking man – out of which i have one beautiful daughter (genetically on her father). i had to take exparty divorce as he has been absconded ,now its been almost 10 yrs ,he has not contacted us .
    i married again in 2007 with my buddy,whom i know since 1987 .
    with my previous experience i decided that looks are not important ,and i married a man who has buck tooth ,fat nose ,and 120 kg in weight ,and receding hair line . Im 41yrs old ,and look very young , i always get compliments that i look like a teenager and i and my daughter look like sisters ,she is 15 yrs old , and 5 .6 inches tall .im 5,3 .we both are very attractive women .
    coming to the point – my second marriage is also not working , inspite marrying my buddy . Its been a year we are seperated .
    One starts to wonder why hystory is repeating ,which took me to this organisation SRCM,where i recd all my answers .
    i felt like writing it down for you’ll ,maybe you guys will benefit from it .
    at this moment im very content with life ,at peace and with faith im moving ahead ,as there is always Hope .can u imagine what i must have gone through .Inspite of it im writing this and sharing my life with unknown people .
    there is much beyond beauty and life itself – something that is towards infinity ,which you’ll have to figure it out yourself.

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