Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

“Beauty,” said the Beast, “if my presence is troublesome, I will end our conversation and leave you. For tell me, do not you think me very ugly?”

“It is true,” said Beauty, “for I cannot tell a lie, but I believe you are very good-natured.”
“Yes, yes,” said the Beast, “my heart is good, but still I am a monster.”

“Among mankind,” says Beauty, “there are many that deserve that name more than you, and I prefer you, just as you are, to those, who, under a human form, hide a treacherous, corrupt, and ungrateful heart.”

Later: Beast opened his eyes, and said to Beauty, “You forgot your promise, and I was so afflicted for having lost you that I resolved to starve myself, but since I have the happiness of seeing you once more, I die satisfied.”

“No, dear Beast,” said Beauty, “you must not die. Live to be my husband; from this moment I give you my hand, and swear to be none but yours. Alas! I thought I had only a friendship for you, but the grief I now feel convinces me that I cannot live without you.”

No sooner had she said this than the hide of the beast split in two and out came a most handsome young prince. The prince told her that he had been enchanted by a magician and could not recover his natural form until a maiden would, of her own free will, declare that she loved him.

Thereupon the prince… was married to Beauty, and they all lived happily ever after.

The theme of beauty and the beast is things are not always what they seem to be. One should not be deceived by appearances for beauty lies within. One must rather try to look past what the eye can see and look inside that person where his/her true personality is found.

Another old tale about things not being always as they appear:

Two traveling angels stopped to spend the night in the home of a wealthy family. The family was rude and refused to let the angels stay in the mansion’s guest room. Instead the angels were given a small space in the cold basement.

As they made their bed on the hard floor, the older angel saw a hole in the wall and repaired it. When the younger angel asked why, the older angel replied, “Things aren’t always what they seem.”

The next night the pair came to rest at the house of a very poor, but very hospitable farmer and his wife. After sharing what little food they had the couple let the angels sleep in their bed where they could have a good night’s rest.

When the sun came up the next morning the angels found the farmer and his wife in tears. Their only cow, whose milk had been their sole income, lay dead in the field. The younger angel was infuriated and asked the older angel how could you have let this happen?

The first man had everything, yet you helped him, she accused. The second family had little but was willing to share everything, and you let the cow die. “Things aren’t always what they seem,” the older angel replied.

“When we stayed in the basement of the mansion, I noticed there was gold stored in that hole in the wall. Since the owner was so obsessed with greed and unwilling to share his good fortune, I sealed the wall so he wouldn’t find it.

Then last night as we slept in the farmers bed, the angel of death came for his wife. I gave him the cow instead. “Things aren’t always what they seem”.

What initially looks true may prove false. What first appears wrong may in time prove to be correct. Truth parading as a lie makes fact no less a fact, nor does a falsehood become factual just because it looks true. Things are often not what they seem to be.

The person I have been guilty of accepting lies and deception about most in my life has been myself! Who was the biggest teller of false things? ME!  For the longest time I tried to be what I am not and kept hidden who I really was  as I tried to please others. With much effort, help and healing my view of self has become more clear and, more often than not, is seen accurately now. In forgiving and accepting myself I befriended “the beast” thereby allowing love to replace my self-contempt.  I am grateful for the life lessons learned that allows the first real happiness of my life.

The greatest achievement is selflessness.
The greatest worth is self-mastery.
The greatest quality is seeking to serve others.
The greatest precept is continual awareness.
The greatest medicine is the emptiness of everything.
The greatest action is not conforming with the worlds ways.
The greatest magic is transmuting the passions.
The greatest generosity is non-attachment.
The greatest goodness is a peaceful mind.
The greatest patience is humility.
The greatest effort is not concerned with results.
The greatest meditation is a mind that let’s go.
The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances.

About James Browning

A seeker working to grow each day and be a better version of my self. Through sharing I commit myself deeper to my ideals and beliefs.
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