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BRODY: We all have an inner light. Let yours shine

“People are like stained glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out. But when the darkness sets then their true beauty is revealed. That is because it is our inner light that guides us through.”

— Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

Elizabeth Kubler-Ross was a front runner in the study of death and dying. Her definitive book on the subject is named, “On Death and Dying.”

My daughter, Dede, before she passed away in 1990, became very close friends with her. In fact, the beautiful quilt in one of my bedrooms at the farm was one Kubler-Ross made for Dede.

Kubler-Ross was an old soul who knew so much more than most of us about things like inner light.

I read every book she wrote because she so often talked about the light just as I have done through my writing career.

She recognized anyone who had the God-placed light, and she also could see right through a person and found no light at all.

Somewhere along life’s journey, women decided inner beauty could be applied by potion from the store.

Here is what she said in one of her books.

Haven’t we all seen a beautiful girl with every hair in place, thin body, perfect skin, you know the look?

The thing is, if you managed to strike up a conversation, chances are that within five minutes, she has said all she can think of to say except for her own self.

At the end of the conversation, is she still so ravishly beautiful?

And, at the same time, you may know a very old woman bent forward and dependent upon a walker, and yet, when you study her wrinkled face and thinning hair, you can’t take your eyes off of her as she talks.

She talks about wonderful memories or dreams yet to come.

You are astonished at the deep abiding beauty that radiates from her as she shares wondrous memories. Not once did her conversation dwell on herself unless it was integral to the story.

My mother was shockingly beautiful. Until the day my daddy died, he told her every day how beautiful she was and how much he loved her.

I grew up hearing this, and I witnessed what it did to her countenance every time he said it. She glowed.

So love is another primary thing that brings beauty to one’s face and body. It absolutely ignites the light within.

A new kind of beauty is seen on the face and frail body when a person has endured pain and a body no longer functions well. I can look at them and see beauty because challenge builds character, empathy and deep caring, and they’re all beautiful.

My best friend, Judy, suffered with her breast cancer from beginning to end.

One day, while in her shower, she was washing her hair. As she massaged her head, gobs of hair fell to the floor. Her daughter and I finished the job until she was bald as a bowling ball.

I went home and I shaved my own head to honor her.

She was absolutely gorgeous. Her eyes sparkled.

A kind, sweet heart creates its own beauty.

Think of someone you know who is beautiful simply because they are genuinely godly and live that way. Don’t you just love to look at him or her? I do.

I immediately think of Mother Theresa. She was deformed, almost dwarfish. I read where she never spent a minute to beautify herself, yet her face is, to my mind, the most preciously beautiful of all. Why? The intensity of her inner light filled all space surrounding her.

So Kubler-Ross is exactly right. If the light of our soul does not shine forth from within, all the makeup and design on earth will never make us beautiful.

We all have this inner light. You have it. I promise you do.

Never ever let it dim or go out.

I speak of the light often.

I even sign all my letters, “Light, Jean.” I do that because I know all beautiful and goodness within us comes from this God-given light, and that, dear friend, is what makes us beautiful.



The view from the mountain is wondrous.

Jean Brody is a passionate animal lover and mother. She previously lived in Winchester, but now resides in Littleton, Colorado. Her column has appeared in The Sun for more than 25 years.