Facing the ever-growing self-optimization delusion that fuels our inner critic non-stop, it is quite comforting to fall back on the Japanese idea respectively Zen-inspired concept of “Wabi-Sabi”.
Wabi-Sabi describes the art of Imperfect Beauty – accepting peacefully the natural cycle of growth and decay (as well as cycle of life & death), in which everything has beauty.
It is simple, slow and uncluttered, and it reverse authenticity above all. Finally, it is the imperfection that make up uniqueness and individuality. Just perfection can be copied, if perfection exists at all.
Wabi-Sabi celebrates cracks (e.g. see the pic of bowl with gold-filled cracks), crevices and all the other marks that time, weather and loving use leave behind.
It reminds us that we are all just transient beings on this planet and that we will return to dust at the end like the entire material world.
Wabi-sabi is not just a Concept, but also an aesthetic and a worldview.
Simply, an intuitive way of Living reflecting the Japanese “mindfulness culture” and in particular “yugon”.
The latter stands for an awareness of the universe that triggers deep emotional responses impossible to express verbally.
Translated literally wabi means lonely, miserable and feeling lost. Just in combination with the term: sabi the meaning is uncovered – being old, mature and showing patina.
Not the obvious beauty is the ideal but hidden (covered up) beauty. Harsh simplicity that reveals appeal / charm to understanding/knowing people (like Connaisseur in French) and nobless hidden in the envelop of unimpressiveness is regarded as true beauty.
In den Wäldern drüben,
tief unter der Last des Schnees,
ist letzte Nacht
ein Pflaumenzweig erblüht.
In the woods over there,
deep under the weight of the snow,
a branch of plum blossomed last night.
Hanami (short-living cherry blossom on trees that don´t grow cherry fruits) but also plum blossom arms are symbols for transience and therefore, also for a young, honorable dead – traditionally among Samurai but also in general related to seppuko (suicide to save one`s Honor and the one of the family, which is still practiced today).
Well, I don´t want to let you go with dark thoughts…in the contrary!
Please, keep in mind you are perfectly imperfect. Outside beauty is by far less valuable than the inner one. Stay pur and authentic, just be you.
And if someone is really interested in you, he/she will be empathic and will take her/his time to get to know you and recognize you – uncovering your beauty. You´ve deserved such kind of special person – who cannot be fooled by polished, shiny surfaces – because you are truely beautiful.