During my trip to Tulum, Mexico last November for my retreat preparations, I went for a long walk on the beach. As I walked along I noticed a group of people up ahead with large white reflectors, “Aah.. a photo-shoot”, I thought. As I approached I could see a photographer behind a very expensive looking camera and about twenty people milling about. They were a young, bikini and bathing suit clad bunch, covered in tattoos, very slick and hip. “Hmmm…”, I wondered, “What could this photo-shoot be for?”, it looked professional. As I got closer I could hear hip hop music playing, as I arrived they stopped shooting and a man with long white hair stepped forward, hair brush in hand, and there she was, “the model”. Her beauty hit me the like an air conditioned room hits you when retreating from the blistering heat. Her bronzed flawless skin, her long lean legs, her tiny waist and sparkling turquoise eyes almost knocked me over. She was… a Goddess. I felt a slight tinge of envy and wondered what it would be like to be her, to be the centre of attention and be considered, in our modern day society, a Goddess. It was a Victoria’s Secret swimsuit photo-shoot.
This is a shot from the Victoria's Secret photo-shoot I saw.
As I continued on my walk pondering the sight I had just encountered I chuckled to myself at the sight. We live in a world that worships beauty and as I gazed upon that beauty I could completely understand it. We are wired to love and idolize beauty, it is in our DNA. It is for the survival of our species, we repel against the unsightly and gravitate towards beauty.
Later that evening, I recalled an incident when my son was about a one and a half years old. We were in a store, I browsed as my son explored the small play area in the corner. I kept an eye on him as I looked around. I turned my head for a moment and suddenly my son had his arms around my legs trying to climb up, “Carry you!”(it was his way of asking that I pick him up), he said desperately, he seemed scared. I knelt down to see what was wrong and then saw another little boy approaching, around two, who had followed my son. His face was swollen and deformed with dark purple skin. I could see he wanted to play, sadness and confusion in his eyes due to my son’s reaction. But my son was terrified, crying with fear, he jumped into my arms as the boy came closer. I tried to turn my son towards the boy and “make friends”, but my son was so terrified he screamed when I turned towards the boy. My son motioned for me to stand and pointed to the door wanting me to carry him away. I looked around for the mother but she was no where to be found. My heart broke for the sick child, I wanted to shield him from my son’s reaction. I did not know what to do, it all happened so fast. My son was too young for an explanation so I chose to retreat.
I sometimes think about that little boy, and wonder what it would be like to be him.
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