32. O BEAUTY!

32. On Beauty

1. O God, Who possesses power

by virtue of the producer, the producing and the produced!

You are the beauty of our salvation.

 

2. The greatest beauty that eternity can enjoy

is [the beauty] of the eternaliser, the eternalising and the eternalised,

and the fact that it possesses a single being by means of all three.

 

3. Were beauty not to consist in acting infinitely,

beauty would consist in acting finitely,

in privation, wickedness and imperfection.

 

4. Were bonifying to be ugly as regards goodness,

in loving, there would not exist the beauty of lover and beloved,

and a beetle in a goblet could be beautiful.

 

5. Love is beautiful when it bonifies,

and goodness is beautiful when love acts well,

yet love is ugly when it commits ill deeds.

 

6. Love is beautiful when loyal

and ugly when false,

and it is beautiful when chaste.

 

7. Beauty is not as beautiful in the colours applied to a face

as it is in the will of a worthy lord

and in the memory of a worthy servant.

 

8. Much more beautiful in a man are worthy thoughts

than wearing beauteous garments upon his back

or having a goblet of gold or silver upon his table.

 

9. Whoever enjoys great beauty

should be pleasant, courteous and polite

for [it is in this way that] he shall be beautiful in being loved.

 

10. Beauty is better when it acts well,

understands and remembers,

than it is when it succumbs to the senses or embellishes itself.