Inner, Outer and Secret Beauty

July 05, 2011 By: Patricia Tedeschi Category: Mind Body Spirit


You are refreshing and vital as the air; graceful and tender as sparkling
Water; lustrous and consuming as flames of fire, generous and enveloping
As space and stable and deep as the earth… You, elemental woman, are
Perfect beauty itself.

When we talk about beauty in the context of Ayurveda, it should be perfectly clear from the start that we are not talking about market-driven ideals of the moment.  In Ayurveda, inner and outer beauty are intimately related.  The more we nurture ourselves, the more radiant we become physically and expressively – regardless of our particular body shape or proportions.

In keeping with the general orientation of eastern philosophy and healing, beauty can be viewed as having three aspects; an outer, inner, and secret aspect. When one balances the outer and inner, one has accomplished the secret aspect.

Outer beauty is what we most commonly associate with the field of beauty.  It is the perfection of what is visually perceived.  It includes the obvious traits such as contours of the body, texture of the skin, and the quality of the hair and nails.  But in Ayurveda, it also includes grace in posture and movement and the subtle qualities of freshness, vitality and magnetizing brightness of being. Ayurveda has always understood beauty to be the product of general physical health and appropriate daily care.  It is not just a cosmetic event.  The emphasis is on self knowledge and development of positive routines and habits that literally bring out the best in ourselves.

Inner beauty relates to inner qualities of being, including emotional states and mental abilities.  Like physical qualities, they are largely determined at birth and are considered to be the result of actions and aspirations from previous lives.  As physical form can be molded by diet and lifestyle, we can also train our minds to cultivate positive states of being.  The state of this process is to begin to accept who we are and begin to truly care for and appreciate ourselves.

The secret aspect of beauty refers to the energy, insight, and inspiration it takes to balance the inner and outer.  Developing this special quality takes time, patience, and a willingness to learn from experience.  This is the mark of real maturity that ripens into deep lasting beauty that is experienced from within and seen by all from without.

Patricia Tedeschi, Owner/Director of Education, Better Botanicals

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