In ancient Egypt (ancient Thebes to be exact; modern day Luxor) there was a place where queens lived called, “The Place of the Beauties” . I thought it only apropos to name this blog post, “The Place of the Beauties” because it will serve as my ode to some of the worldwide women I admire. There are hundreds of women, if not thousands, of women I admire; but the ones I chose for this post are women that anyone can have access to. They are women of folklore, mythology, cinema and real women surviving and struggling for their lives and that of their families or other women. Here is my place for some of the world’s “beauties” to be honored… not a place that acts as a playground for spoiled pharaohs… but an electronic shrine to women who are fighting, surviving, inspiring… everywhere in the world.
The Place of the Beauties
Here are the Beauties in all their glory in no specific order:
1. Linor Abargi:In 1998, an 18 year-old Linor Abargi from Israel, was crowned Miss World in a World Pageant. That’s not why she made this list. Only six weeks prior to being crowned, then Miss Israel, was brutally abducted and raped in Milan, Italy while attending pageant business. But that isn’t why she made this list either. She makes this list because of the work and travel she has since done because of a beautiful passion to heal victims of rape. She has traveled all over the world, doing motivational speaking to rape victims but also to create awareness of rape survivors. Her documentary, “Brave Miss World” is intense, inspiring, heart wrenching and eye opening. I advise that one watches this documentary with a strong constitution and a box of tissue. It is blunt and it doesn’t hold back on rape accounts and stories.
2. Christy Turlington: You may know Christy Turlington as an international super model. Of course that isn’t why she made my list of honorable women. She made it because she is an advocate for maternal health through the humanitarian advocacy; “CARE” (Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere). She is also the ambassador for “Product Red”, which is a global fund to raise awareness to HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. In Turlington’s documentary, “No Woman No Cry: Every Mother Counts” the humble super model visits slums, villages, and low income areas to show what women with no money must go through just to bring their child into the world. It is of course inspiring and heroic, but also touching and sorrowful. It reminds the watcher even in the 21st century how dangerous child bearing still is and even more so for women in under developed countries and even for poor women in the richest countries. This documentary is a must see for everyone; especially for women.
3. Penelope: Third on the list is a little bit silly but no less important for it deals with a women’s self image. This is an issue that is near and dear to my heart because of course, as a woman, I deal with tremendous grief and agony when it comes to my own self image. The media portrays women as walking, talking, living Barbie dolls, and Honey, that just ain’t me. It’s not only not me, but no real woman out there except for maybe the occasional freak of nature super model, looks like a Barbie doll (not mentioning plastic surgery junkies). The 2006 film, “Penelope” tells the old folk legend of Penelope, a girl who is born with a family curse, which is a pig’s snout for a nose! Comedic, right? True, it is a funny scenario but there is an underlying message… true beauty is the highest beauty of all. So, what is true beauty? A face, a nose, a pig’s snout? Never! A woman’s laugh, a woman’s working hands, a woman’s shed tear for another, a woman’s belly swollen with a baby, a woman’s wisdom… that’s some of what makes true beauty. A kind word, a woman reaching out, a giddy giggle, a woman’s eyes full of life… there is no super model, flower, painting or Barbie, who can match that kind of beauty. Look at yourself, right now. Grab a mirror and look into your face. What do you see? Imperfections? No. Erase the “IM” part of imperfections. You see “perfections”. Look at your eyes. Think about all they have seen through out their existence. Look at your lips… think of all the lover’s they have kissed and all the cheeks or foreheads they have laid upon. Keep going. If you can’t do this with your face because you don’t want to grab a mirror than look at your hands right now; all the meals they have made, soil they have waded through, all the children they have touched, all the hands they have shook, all the art and beauty they have created… maybe a forehead they have petted. You’re beautiful. Learn to love yourself because that is the best love of all.
4. Fictional characters, from the movie “Uptown Girls”: I love the movie, “Uptown Girls”. It shows that two completely different females, of completely different ages can unite and heal each other. I chose characters, “Molly Gunn” (played by my beloved Brittany Murphy; I absolutely LOVE her) and “Lorraine “Ray” Schleine” (played by Dakota Fanning) because at the end of the movie they break down their walls, and try to heal from the damage that is caused by the losses of both of their fathers (I wish I had watched this movie around the time I lost my own father). Through struggle and acceptance of life’s obstacles they achieve transformation and happiness. Now how is that not beautiful and honorable?
I hope you have enjoyed this list. I have my own personal beauties who I come across in real life; women who I look up to and honor for one reason or the next but I wanted my list to be one that anyone can assess on their own and be able to research and come to their own conclusion if any of these “beauties” are heroic to them. I will probably add more “beauties” in the future because there is no way my list could stop at four. But I wanted to steal only a little bit of your time today 🙂 Have a good one… and much love from this side of the screen to yours. ❤
I leave you with this song: