Friday, October 2, 2009

Manners


"Manners are made up of trivialities of deportment which can be easily learned if one does not happen to know them; manner is personality—the outward manifestation of one’s innate character and attitude toward life." ~Emily Post, 1922


I'd like to continue the conversation about Esther. Esther gained respect from all, and Beth Moore suggests her manners were responsible. So I researched manners. I looked up Emily Post, 1922's Miss Manners.(online for your reading pleasure here) I remember my mom having my sister and I read an ancient book of manners for homeschooling ages ago, and thought I may find some gems. I did. Some are funny. Some are thought provoking. I could use a refresher on manners. Could you?



FOR WHAT SHE REALLY IS

  Instead of depending upon beauty, upon sex-appeal, the young girl who is “the success of to-day” depends chiefly upon her actual character and disposition. It is not even so necessary to do something well as to refrain from doing things badly. If she is not good at sports, or games, or dancing, then she must find out what she is good at and do that! If she is good for nothing but to look in the glass and put rouge on her lips and powder her nose and pat her hair, life is going to be a pretty dreary affair... Beauty and wit, and heart, and other qualifications or attributes is another matter altogether.


  A gift of more value than beauty, is charm, which in a measure is another word for sympathy, or the power to put yourself in the place of others; to be interested in whatever interests them, so as to be pleasing to them, if possible, but not to occupy your thoughts in futilely wondering what they think about you.
  Would you know the secret of popularity? It is unconsciousness of self, altruistic interest, and inward kindliness, outwardly expressed in good manners.

Etiquette must, if it is to be of more than trifling use, include ethics as well as manners. Certainly what one is, is of far greater importance than what one appears to be.


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