10.41 – The truth of beauty, the beauty of truth
Beauty attracts everyone. Poets sing about it; lovers bask in it; people dream about it. Many give up everything else for its sake. They see beauty as the highest truth.
Gita wisdom enables us to see beyond appearances. It helps us see the soul beyond the body, the spirit beyond matter, God beyond the world.
Does this philosophical vision cause us to reject the beauty that we see in the world?
Yes and no: yes when worldly beauty distracts us from real eternal beauty, no when it reminds us of that supreme beauty.
Worldly beauty often captivates and entangles us. This takes away our impetus to see beyond the surface. Yet saying no to anything pleasant is never pleasant. That’s why we usually find it extremely difficult to turn away from worldly beauty.
Thankfully, Gita wisdom offers us a higher devotional understanding of worldly beauty. The Bhagavad-gita (10.41) indicates that worldly beauty is a spark of Krishna’s supreme beauty. Krishna is the highest manifestation of the Absolute Truth.
The beauty of truth then is the beauty of Krishna, which is the crowning reality of existence. Krishna’s beauty is what we are seeking, whether we realize it or not.
And the truth of beauty – the true nature of worldly beauty – is that it is a reflection of Krishna’s supreme beauty. We don’t have to reject it as false. Instead, we can use it as a reminder of Krishna’s irresistible beauty. Worldly beauty may also seem irresistible, but because it is temporary, it just can’t satisfy our heart’s perennial longing for beauty. If we desire lasting satisfaction, we need to redirect our attraction from worldly beauty to Krishna. By careful cultivation of Krishna consciousness, we can fulfill our heart’s longing for beauty fully and forever.