Saturday, October 07, 2017

Beauty Sickness is a disease we all have

The topic of beauty and plastic surgery came up in a sermon some weeks ago. And as I thought about it, I was surprised when I asked myself this question: what's wrong with it if it is required for your job, if you are a model or an actor or actress. Of course, it's not as simple as that. 

Which is why when I saw this book on sale in Kindle, I got a copy and started reading it today. It's a good book. 

Beauty Sick, How the Cultural Obsession with Appearance Hurts Girls and Women
by Renee Engeln. PhD

It does not talk about people where beauty is required for their profession, but it's about all of us--men included but especially for women--having this thing call beauty sickness. 

Beauty sickness is what happens when women's emotional energy gets so bound up with what they see in the mirror that it becomes harder for them to see other aspects of their lives. 

Beauty sickness is fed by a culture that focuses on women's appearance over anything else they might do or say or be. It's reinforced by the images we see and the words we use to describe ourselves and other women. 

Englen gave a TEDx Talk and if you don't want to read the book, the talk pretty much sums up her message. 

We all fall somewhere along the continuum of this sickness. None of us can extract ourselves out of it but we need to manage it and not let it take away too much of our cognitive resources or time or money which we can spend on other more useful stuff. 

I must say I have been quite involved in my effort to lose weight but I dare say that I am doing it healthily (except I should add in this thing call exercise which is not yet in the picture). 

But I did learn that our bodies is not for show but function. Our bodies are given by God and for us to care and nurture. Be kind to yourself, and don't objectify it and don't let others judge you. And most of all, don't put your voice into others to judge yourself. Other people have other problems of their own. 


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