The Hijacking of Naturism

One thing that’s always bothered me is the way naturism has been hijacked so often by people who want to make it a sexual thing. If you google naturism or nudism you are at least as likely to find content of a sexual nature as you are real naturist material, if not more. In the real world too the same happens. There is a beach on the east coast of Scotland which has traditionally been used by naturists. It’s not official but is well known for naturist use. When I first got into naturism I thought if we ever had a sunny enough day one weekend (sadly all too rare in Scotland!) I’d visit this beach. However a little more research told me that the beach was frequently visited doggers, looking for sexual encounters.

My wife tolerates my interest in naturism only because she understands it is a non sexual activity. However things like this would make her very uncomfortable with my attendance.

We went on a family holiday to Gran Canaria, to Playa del Ingles which has a large naturist beach area. I was hoping I might persuade my wife to leave the security of the textile beach in town and wander along a little to the naturist beach. I’m glad I didn’t because before we went I heard from friends online that the dunes area is used by couples having sex and groups of men watching them “helping” themselves. We would apparently have had to pick out route carefully to avoid such a show, and with a less than enthusiastic wife and a primary age child that’s not helpful.

Why do swingers and pornographers have to hijack the term and places for naturism? Swinging is not a lifestyle choice I’m interested in, but I’m perfectly happy to allow other people to participate in it themselves if that is what they want. I believe in personal liberty as long as you’re not hurting someone else. I’d be totally OK with swingers having their own places on the net and in real life (and they do), so why can’t they leave us to have our places?

I’m happy too that naturists can be swingers, just like naturists can be golfers. But much like I’d prefer that the golfer/naturists didn’t play golf on a nudist beach I’d also prefer swinger/naturists didn’t have sex there either. It’s really a question of appropriate behaviour for appropriate places.

Some swingers say it’s hypocritical to say nudity is natural and should be allowed, but public displays of sex shouldn’t. They argue that sex is natural too and so should be equally acceptable, but I disagree. I enjoy a drink. I like wine from Italy and a good malt Scotch whisky. I also like driving. I don’t think that just because these two things are good and I enjoy them that it’s OK to drink and drive. I don’t see anything hypocritical in saying these two activities don’t mix.

So be a swinger if you wish, just please find your own places and be clear it is a different thing from naturism.

The Hijacking of Naturism

Nudity and Morality – Postscript

I posted recently about my thoughts on the biblical view of social nudism. That was looking back on my thinking before I first embarked on social naturism. I was please to find all the Christian naturist sites that helped me understand what the bible had to say and more importantly what it didn’t.

However there was a bit of my mind still uneasy as these were people looking to find a reason why naturism should be considered allowed. What if they were fooling themselves. Sometimes even with the best of intentions people can find the evidence they need to support their own ideas and beliefs much easier than they can find evidence to the contrary. In Science it’s called confirmation bias. We’re much more likely to give more weight to evidence that supports our point than that which does not. It’s not intentional it’s just the way out minds work.

I’ve recently come across the writings of a Pastor in the US, Ed Raby, who is not a naturist, but has enquired into the biblical view of nudity without any bias. He has tried to understand the scriptures without any particular axe to grind. If anything coming at this as a non naturist, and given the basis on which he explains he started looking at the biblical view on nudity, which was to encourage a young female Christian not to go topless while on the beach, he probably started out with a more negative preconception. He went on to find much in agreement with the Christian naturists. If you’re interested you can read more at https://edraby.wordpress.com/god-and-nudity/

Nudity and Morality – Postscript

Nudity and morality

When I first started to feel that I wanted to do more than be nude on my own, but rather wanted to do it in a social setting I wondered what was wrong with me. I had partially bought in to the societal view that nudity and sex were inextricably linked and that if I wanted to be nude around others it was a form of sexual exhibitionism and or sexual voyeurism. I really had to explore and question my own motivations. Did this desire make me some kind of pervert? Was I fooling myself to think it was unrelated to sex? At the same time I thought I knew my own mind and, after all, the pleasure I got from being nude on my own was non-sexual in nature. It was the freedom from restricting clothes, it was the feel of the elements on my skin, it was natural and comfortable and unrelated to sex in any way. I made certain in my own mind that I wasn’t looking to display myself to others in a sexual way, but was this about seeing naked women? Like the next man I like the way women look. It’s in our genetic programming, so was I rationalising away a hidden desire to look a naked women. I had to think long and hard about this one before reaching the conclusion that I wasn’t trying to sneak a peak at a nudist lady, I wasn’t trying to see others nude for sexual gratification. But if that was how I felt why did society say it was wrong? Why was I different from everyone else?

I did a lot of reading on forums and naturist organisation web sites such as British Naturism (http://www.bn.org.uk/index.php). I found a lot of information that said I wasn’t the only one, that my views were very much in keeping with the views of naturists across the country and indeed across the world. It was a minority view, but a deeply held one. I did unfortunately also find that lots of things pose as naturism that really have nothing to do with naturism at all, like swinging and pornography, but that’s probably a topic for another post. Fortunately it seems like with a little research I could avoid web sites and places that were not really naturist in nature. I discovered that as long as I was careful the people I would meet would most likely be of a like mind with me, not looking for a sexual connotation, just the freedom to enjoy being nude and to share the experience with others.

But was it a moral thing to do? Coming from a Christian perspective, surely it was sinful? I did some bible reading myself and I soon discovered a whole range of Christian naturist resources online (such as http://www.naturist-christians.org, https://cnfellowship.wordpress.com and http://www.figleafforum.com). They helped me understand that the bible really doesn’t have anything to say against nudity and that from a Christian perspective there’s no overriding moral obligation to keep covered up. Indeed God would never command someone to commit a sin and yet he commanded Isaiah to prophesy naked. I was interested too to see quotes from Pope John Paul II’s book Love and Responsibility:

“The human body can remain nude and uncovered and preserve intact its splendour and its beauty… Nakedness as such is not to be equated with physical shamelessness… Immodesty is present only when nakedness plays a negative role with regard to the value of the person… The human body is not in itself shameful… Shamelessness (just like shame and modesty) is a function of the interior of a person.”

So I arrived at the conclusion that my motives were appropriate, and there was no biblical prohibition. The only thing holding me back was inhibition and opportunity, and I was determined to overcome both and I’m glad I did.

Nudity and morality

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I was uncomfortable and self conscious wearing clothes especially swimwear, but found that I didn’t feel that way as a naturist, nude in public and that feeling has even carried over to times I must wear clothes.

infinite pensieve

Oddly enough, I’m not ashamed of my body when I’m naked.

Wait, I take that back.

I’m not ashamed around my husband, but I am around other people.  If there’s a common changing area like at the gym or swimming pool, I arrange everything about how NOT naked I can be in that area.

If you’re overweight and wanting to go to a gym, changing in the locker room can be intimidating.  As for what I do, I go to the gym in my gym clothes and then go home for the shower.  Luckily, my apartment is only two blocks from the gym, so it’s just a quick walk.

In the beginning, I had to change in the gym, but I always did it as quickly and discreetly as possible.  But still, I would walk home before showering.  This was partly because I was too shy to shower in public…

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