Lessons From Beauty and the Beast


My thoughts have been on this timeless film for the past couple days….

It’s heroine is someone who could see beyond the looks of those around her to see what they’re really like inside….

The characters were charming and beautiful with personalities all their own . .

The villain is someone who was everyone’s favorite guy but was filled to the brim with pride (and as Belle stated to her father, “Yes, he’s handsome. And arrogant. And self conceited.”).

And the hero…buried beneath fur, claws, paws, and a temper, slowly learned what it meant to really love someone.

And when I say he learned to really love…I mean it. When one is willing to give up what they want for what is best for the one they care for….well, that’s love. Love is self-sacrificing; not hording.

When Belle looked through the mirror, and saw her father sick and lost, and knew she needed to go to him, the Beast showed the true love in his heart by letting her go. He knew there was a chance that she would never return. That she might notย  fully learn who he was inside and love him back if she wasn’t there…but he did what he knew was best for her. The best thing for her was to go to her father. And he loved her enough to let her go.

All I could think of when I saw that scene was ‘Wow’. There’s a piece of REAL LOVE right there in this Disney animation. It was so refreshing. And she came back as soon as possible because she loved–not what she saw–but what she knew was beneath the rough surface. And it wasn’t love at first sight. The two despised each other through out the first half of the film (the Beast probably wouldn’t have had anything to do with her except that his servants kept insisting that he should at least try to win her over if they ever wanted to be humans again; so he tried, since he was responsible for those under him as well). But once she was able to set aside her sharp tongue and he was able to calm his temper, they began to see who each other were really like beyond the surface. And that led to something deeper.

The film has some major, major problems. Let me go down a rabbit trail by saying that I don’t like magic at all, but I was thankful that the majority of the magic told was in the prolouge in narration form, with only stain glass windows showing what transpired to make the prince a beast. There are other parts of the ‘magic’ being shown through out the film (the mirror, the rose, and the transformations at the end), but as it wasn’t peppered through out the entire things, it didn’t bother me to a large extreme like some other films I’ve seen or heard about.

But for once it protrayed something that many movies do not. Many movies portray falling in love with handsome young men at first sight–not knowing a thing about them or who they are, what they’ve done…or even not caring what they’ve done before. The girls love what they see on the outside but they don’t stop to think of what he might be like on the inside. This is portrayed in Beauty and the Beast; all the other girls in the village go nuts over Gaston (And they’re rather immodest too, so, if you’re a young man and you happen to watch the film, a study of the ceiling would be in order). If you just listen to what the three girls in the film sing…”Look there..he goes. Isn’t he dreamy? Monsieur Gaston. Oh, he’s so cute. He’s stealed.. my heart. I’m hardly breathing. . . ” it’s just terrible how they only see the outside and not look into what Gaston believes or holds dear (which is basically himself).

Belle did.

And I pray that I will be able to, too. Even if the man I marry doesn’t look handsome, or muscular, or wonderful. Maybe he’ll have frightening scars or startling features. But I will marry him because what I see inside of him is good and God honoring. He and I will be just right for each other. I will know if he is the one God picked for me. And that will be what matters.

And, who knows. I might just learn how to love the claws and jaws too . . .

And before I end, I want to leave you with the prolouge to this beautiful story; probably one of the few romances I will ever love.

Once upon a time in a far away land, a young prince lived in a shining castle. Although he had everything his heart desired, the prince was spoiled, selfish and unkind.

But then, one winterโ€™s night, an old beggar woman came to the castle and offered him a single rose in return for shelter from the bitter cold. Repulsed by her haggard appearance, the prince sneered at the gift and turned the old woman away, but she warned him not to be deceived by appearances, for beauty was found within. And when he dismissed her again, the old womanโ€™s appearance melted away to reveal a beautiful enchantress. The prince tried to apologize, but it was too late, for she had seen that there was no love in his heart, and as punishment, she transformed him into a hideous beast and placed a powerful spell on the castle and all who lived there.

Ashamed of his monstrous form, the beast concealed himself inside his castle, with a magic mirror as his only window to the outside world. The rose she had offered was truly an enchanted rose which would bloom until his twenty-first year. If he could learn to love another and could earn their love in return by the time the last petal fell, then the spell would be broken. If not, he would be doomed to remain a beast for all time.

As the years past, he fell into despair, and lost all hope, for who could ever learn to love a beast?

~Jamie Joyce

PS. If you ever get a chance to hear the soundtrack, take it, for it’s one of the best. It’s enchanting, beautiful, and lovely. The themes are distinct and the songs great fun!

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18 thoughts on “Lessons From Beauty and the Beast

  1. There are certainly a lot of lessons from that movie. It was much better than I’d thought it would of been. It was nice the heroine loved her father and like you said, she didn’t fall for Gaston’s outside, because his inside was so rotten. (I love the candlestick, tea pot, clock and I DONT like the mop!) teehee

  2. Um, problem: is it accurate to say she was IN love with the beast while he was a beast? Because wouldn’t that be in the spirit of beastality?

    1. I doubt that she did not know. This being my reason. Firstly, she knew it was an enchanted Castle and as a voracious reader she had read fairly tales well, this I knew from her song while going to the library. Belle love the best because of her prior knowledge, not really a blind love. Secondly, I believe this should make u take a glance back, she saw his torn portrait on the wall, which reviewed his eyes and that was still what she looked into to know it was truly the beast when He transformed into human.

  3. I guess you’re right, it was an inherent thing. And even if she didn’t know, I’d say she came to love the beast as a friend, then upon discovering him as a human, that love deepened into marital love instantly.

    1. Yes. It can be seen either way. My preference is that she knew before he changed—because she had to love him before that last petal fell for him to change in the first place. ๐Ÿ™‚

      ~Jamie Joyce

    2. In the original Beauty and the Beast when Belle saw the pictures of the handsome prince she thought the beast had him hidden or imprisoned somewhere in the castle and she searched for him. Disney took the original story and created its own, similar but different. So I believe she knew it was him. This is a wonderful question and I could help but put my two cents in. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. I enjoyed reading your thoughts on Beauty and the Beast. It’s my favorite fairy tale by far, in all its many variations. Rich themes for exploration abound, both in the movie and in the fairy tale variants. Like you, I appreciated that Belle and the Beast didn’t fall in love the minute they laid eyes on each other, but their relationship had time to grow naturally. ๐Ÿ™‚

    By the way, I was also homeschooled, and I write and read fantasy. I’ve enjoyed browsing your site and learning a bit about a fellow writer!

  5. Dear Jamie Joyce, what a thoughtful analysis of Beauty and the Beast. I loved it and also benefited from it. God bless you and grant you your heart’s desire to meet and marry a godly man someday. Sr. Maria Magdalena

    1. Thank you very much for the wonderful and encouraging comment! ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m glad my post blessed you and thank you so much for your sweet tidings!

      ~Jamie

  6. I love this movie (I was in the play too!) I think you are sooooo right, so many times the good looking, popular guy that EVERYONE is in love with isn’t a Godly man and is only popular by the world’s standards, while someone else who isnt as popular but has the Lord shines brighter than the sun.

    I’m striving to be popular in Christ, for that’s the only popularity that matters in the end! =)

    1. HI and thank you so much for the wonderful comment! I’m glad you agree and you are very correct. People know longer measure by God’s standards but by a warped, ‘popularity’, wordly standard. It will only bring up an empty bucket by the end! ๐Ÿ˜€

      I would love to be in a Beauty and the Beast play! Oh my goodness, how awesome!! ๐Ÿ˜€

      ~Jamie

  7. Jamie, Beautiful analogy of Beauty and the Beast. The play is being casted locally and can’t wait to see it again. As the mother of 3 sons, I’ve prayed for their Godly spouses since they were babies. Oldest is now courting his beloved and she is a beauty inside and out. Hold out for the one the Lord has set aside for you because he will be worth the wait!
    But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

    1. Thanks for the encouragment, Ma’am!!!! I’m glad you enjoyed my post and I’m so happy to hear about your oldest son! You all must be very happy! ๐Ÿ™‚

      ~Jamie

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