In the modern world, the beauty of things is often described by perfection, symmetry, and ideal proportion. However, wabi-sabi, a traditional Japanese aesthetics, is different from this law, because it appreciates the beauty of imperfection!
In Japanese, Wabi roughly means “the elegant beauty of humble simplicity”, and Sabi means “attentive melancholy”. Wabi-sabi refers to an awareness of the transient nature of earthly things and the mark of its impermanence. Ironically, all these descriptions can only scratch the surface of the topic.
Wabi-sabi is not only aesthetics but also a philosophy for life. Usually, wabi-sabi leaves somethings unfinished or incomplete, which denotes following three important principles: an awareness of the natural forces involved in the creation of things; an acceptance of the power of nature; and an abandonment of belief that we are separate from our surroundings.
These principles help people to see themselves as part of the natural world. Instead of seeing dents or uneven shapes as mistakes, we can view them as a creation of nature. Likewise, failures and sufferings are also reminders of our experience, and erase them would be like ignoring the beauty of life.
In Taoism, perfection is considered equivalent to death, as there is no further growth. Rather than spending time and energy to make things perfect, accept things as they are. This philosophy not only helps to get a piece of mind but also guides to find beauty in flaws.