Rabbi Moshe Ben-Chaim

“A gold ring in the snout of a pig, so too is a beautiful woman bereft of reasoning” (Prov. 11:22). 


The primary lesson is that we value personal integrity over beauty. However this would also indicate that a beautiful woman with wisdom is praiseworthy, for despite her looks, she chose God’s Torah over vanity. What is the value of beauty? God certainly made beauty to cause romantic attraction and generate respect, as in leaders (the matriarchs were beautiful). King David overlooked punishing his beautiful son Adoniyahu (Kings I, 1:6). Although this was improper of King David, it teaches how attraction can help people overlook wrongdoings. However, here, King Solomon wishes to stress that the more important element is one's character, and that the wayward woman obscures her beauty just like a pig completely obscures the gold ring in its nose. Beauty captivates, it has its place, but we must value character—one’s accomplishments—over inherited beauty for which one deserves no praise. An intelligent person values others of integrity, and senses the shallowness of beautiful people seeking vanity. God designed us that we have an accurate sense of what is good, real and valuable…and what is phony and worthless.