What is in a face? Is it how we look or what comes from inside out? It is often said that “looks can be deceptive” or that someone is “double faced”. How many of us will want to put on an ugly mask or how many of us will want to be identified with an ugly attitude. Does our face enhance our name or does our name enhance our face?
What influences the names parents give their children at birth? Let’s sample some of them: the name sounds nice, the meaning of the name impresses much, the face of someone bearing the name appears pretty or handsome, the person bearing the name is or was successful. If it’s a bible name it was a well spoken of bible character. Typical native names are giving to identify with circumstances around the family at conception or at birth. Some adults have decided to change their names simply because they saw a facially ugly namesake or a namesake with an ugly attitude or behavior. There is an observable shocking disappointment if the one bearing the assumed nice name is facially ugly. I have heard people say “this name does not fit” an individual. Why? It’s assumed that anyone bearing a certain name should be facially good looking or has a good physique.
When a young person comes before my mother-in-law to talk about an intended marriage mate, she uses her own idiom “eye must see before mouth will eat”. Meaning, the intended marriage mate has to be good looking facially before concern for the inner person. People that are good looking outwardly tend to get more recognition and more opportunities.
There are different shapes and features to various external faces. Shapes like oblong, oval, round, cherubic, mangled. Features ranges from beveled to rosy chin, pointed to broad nose, thin to thick eyebrow, broad to narrow forehead, light to heavy lips, small to big eyeballs. The list can go on depending on how well they can be differentiated. Different facial features on an external face appeal to different people.
Just as there are varying shapes and features to the external face, there are likewise varying dispositions and attitudes to the face from within. These are either inherent at birth or developed during the cause of life. These makes up the “set pattern of behavior”. It’s often said “first impression matters” but that it matters depends on whether the one forming the impression can use sound judgement. This is what I’ll want to call “face to face” or “face off”. I recall the instance of my wife meeting with a former colleague of mine that came visiting our home. As both were greeting each other with a handshake, they were both scanning for the first impression. We all do this consciously or unconsciously. Most often than not, the basis for forming the first impression is ones own criteria, own “set pattern of behavior” or preconceived notions to measure someone else’s action or reaction, someone’s spoken or unspoken words, someone’s kind acts or lack of it. What is the face to mind?
One of the handmaiden in the quest for face to mind of both internal and external kind is peer pressure. While peer pressure may appear to be predominant amongst teenagers and young adults, it also has its toll on mature adults and elderly ones. It’s disaffection for ones own fortune in life, displeasure with ones own physical appearance, and low self-esteem that makes peer pressure appealing in the quest for face to mind. Note that peer pressure has to be appealing for it to exact any pressure. The media uses it, show business uses it, advertising agencies uses it, it’s used on the Internet. It even comes to bear in cooperate environment amongst colleagues. However, peer pressure has negative and positive impact.
Most young girls and boys grow up desiring the face and figure on the front page magazine, the face in a television soap opera, the face of a musical idol, the face of a religious leader, the face of a political leader. In the family, the boys grow up desiring the face of their father. As much as girls grow up desiring the face of their mother some still desire the face of their father. Even some mothers desire their daughters having the face of their fathers. Have you observed that most firstborn female child takes the face of fathers while the boys takes the face of mothers. So for a child, when does the quest for face to mind start? Of all the faces observed before reaching an adult, which will be the face to mind? Or better still, what determines the face to mind?
The quest for face to mind, is it internal or external? There is huge conflict between the internal and external face. These calls to mind the adages “do not judge a bull by its color” or “a book by its cover page”. I recall my colleagues telling me “the way you appear facially is not the way you drive when behind the starring wheel”. They had to nickname me Michael Schumacher because of my desire for speed when driving. They admit I appear gentle, calm and, soft spoken but a different spirit takes over me when driving.
With regards to human nature, everything externally good looking fades with time. Think of that good looking gazelle appearance of a lady on the front page magazine, how is she today? The star actor or actress of that TV soap opera, would you want to have his or her looks at age 60, 70 or 80? The musical idol with the voice that sends you to dream land or the looks you’re having a crush on, is it still there? If the face to mind is external, it’s value last only in the bloom of youth.
The internal face is only as beautiful as what the mind reflects on. Dietitians will say “if you nourish the inside it shows on the outside”. Beauticians will say “beauty is internal” if they understand the implication of that. Just as there are both beautiful and ugly external faces, there are also beautiful and ugly internal faces. An ugly looking external face can be made to appear beautiful by use of cosmetics or plastic surgery for those who will want to go that far in the quest for face to mind of an external kind.
It obvious humans mind things that are extrinsic. When consideration is giving to the three components that informs the use of the word person, referring to an individual, could it be better minding the face from within? What are the three components that inform the use of the word person? These are the brain, mind, and intelligence. While animals have brain, they lack mind and intelligence. This why humans are said to be higher mammal. As you are reading this, you must be rationalizing where this write up is headed – the brain is at work. That you are rationalizing implies that your mind is set at attempting to understand. Intelligence or what is most often referred to as wisdom is what shows whether the intrinsic face is worth minding.
How can the power of the brain and mind be harness for good? Why is it that no two persons are motivated same way by same word or action? Which is preferred instinct or intelligence?