Storytelling Matters

The Live Art and the Power of Words

Reimagining Beauty – N is for Numinous

Blogging A to Z

If you are new to this blog, welcome!

For my Blogging from A to Z April Challenge, I am writing about how storytellers, writers, parents, teachers (in other words, just about anyone) can reimagine beauty to be more inclusive. That way, people with disabilities, varying body types and racial backgrounds, etc. (in other words, anyone) can feel and be recognized by the world as the beauties they truly are.

Reimagining Beauty – N is for Numinous

If this word is mysterious to you, then you are already halfway to understanding it – mysterious is one way to explain it.

Something that is numinous, according to, suggests the presence of divinity. Numinousness touches our emotions. According to the World Dictionary, another meaning of numinous is awe-inspiring.

Think magical. Think bewitching. Think holy. Think awesome. Think supernatural (but not the television series).

We have all met people who possess a quality that we can’t identify, that lures us in and lassos our hearts. We recognize sheer beauty when a mysterious, bewitching connection of two souls mutually strikes emotion and spirit. Meeting a life partner is an example of a numinous occurrence.

One of my son’s dance teachers has this quality. Tension melts away in his presence. He gentles people. Like a human horse whisperer, this man has an inexplicable something. One of his mentors says he is divine.

When we recognize the beautiful mystery of someone else, we are not looking at their complexion. When we are awestruck by another’s soul, we are not evaluating their swimsuit size. Yet, when we connect to the numinous nature of another, we marvel at his or her beauty.

So marvel at the inner, inexplicable beauty of those you know or compose words about. Whether you speak or write, tell about the beautiful, numinous nature of people.

Can you think of characters from life and literature who are beautiful for this quality?
Copyright 2014 The Storycrafters. All rights reserved.

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11 thoughts on “Reimagining Beauty – N is for Numinous

  1. Cecilia on said:

    My ex husband once said “You would be the ugliest woman in the world if it weren’t for your personality”. So I must have a numinous personality. What a fabulous word. Numinous. I shall practice that when I look in the mirror and say “I am numinous” . Thank you

  2. Numinous. Kind of like “it”? When a person “has it?”?

  3. I’m going to have to think about this word. It’s stirring all kinds of things in my mind. Thanks!

  4. lexacain on said:

    I love this word and your thoughtful definition. I don’t think I’ve ever met a “human whisperer” (except for my grandfather who was a Bishop). I love the idea, and thank you for giving me something to think about.
    Lexa Cainโ€™s Blog

  5. dino0726 on said:

    Cool! I think I like the word ‘Numinous’. Will have to use it today to remember it. Good luck with the rest of the A – Z Challenge! ๐Ÿ™‚

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