Refinement is the quality of being careful of manners and speech around others at home, in the church or the community. If a person is refined, they will not blurt out just any rude thing to others, especially to their elders. The quality of refinement helps you emerge from tense times or grim jobs with some dignity, and makes life easier for others around you. Having refining rituals in your life can help you remember to reach for the higher and nobler things in life. Some of these refining qualities can be obtained by observing the following:
Refinement in Dress: Covering, more than revealing, shows thoughtfulness of others and self-respect. Contrary to popular belief, immodest women who wear low-cut tops, shorts, and revealing skirts are not appreciated by upright people. Several times I have observed men complimenting modestly dressed women and thanking them for dressing respectfully. These men are confronted daily with immodesty, and it is no small compliment when they address a woman on this subject. Dressing modestly expresses refinement and has a refining influence on men. Wearing appropriate clothing for weddings and other special occasions is also a sign of refinement.
Refinement in Manners: This means waiting until others are seated before you take your first bite of food at the table, or letting older people have the best chair in the room before you sit down. It means greeting others when you see them and answering politely when spoken to. It means not standing in front of two people who are trying to converse, and, in general, not being an imposition on others.
Refinement in Speech: While many women are realising the importance of dressing more modestly and femininely, they sometimes forget to reform their speech to match their look. If they blurt out anything they think, become mocking or insulting, and talk about private things, it ruins the impression they are trying to make. There is no use dressing up if your speech is crude, rude, loud, obnoxious, and disrespectful.
Refinement in the Home: Respecting family members as though they are royalty shows refinement. Our manners come from our habits at home. When people have a strong sense of respect for parents and siblings at home, they tend to behave in a more refined way in public. Cultivating respect and appreciation for members of the family at home helps to develop refinement. Being careful not to ruin family furniture and things that have meaning to the family, and having respect for the home maker and her desires to have a lovely home, is a sign of personal respect and refinement.
Peacefulness at home is another product of refinement. No one likes to have their home disturbed with loud, obnoxious music, insults, or disrespect. The home should be treated as a sacred place. The quality of refinement will bring peace and quiet to the home.
Refinement is generally the difference between being rude and being polite. In times of national distress, this quality will win the most hardened hearts and keep life as normal as possible.
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