Taking a Leap

Leaping into the chill to express top freedom

adventure and lessons: reflections on a clothing optional event

IMG_0722.PNGThis year, I dove into a number of public clothes free events. All of them were magnificent, as I’ve written in various posts. With these wonderful experiences under my belt, I felt confident and ready to step into an experience where I wouldn’t know anyone at all, no previous contact or connection. This one was a little closer: Maryland Area Naturist Association (MARNA) (meetup site: http://www.meetup.com/MARNAINMD/). I had been avoiding this since February, as I was afraid to go alone. I am glad that I finally braved it. However, on the whole, I wouldn’t say that it was an experience that ranked at the same level as my other spring and summer adventures. Read more

What happened at a clothes free wedding

Clothes Shedding – my experience of a nudist wedding

I was invited to join a good friend of mine at a naturist (nudist for those of you who don’t know) resort over the weekend. Having been to Sandy Bay a couple of times, and enjoying walking around with the minimum/no of clothes when in the privacy of my house, it sounded like a good idea.

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Woman finds comfort with her body at clothes free comedy show

I Went to a Nude Comedy Show and Learned to Accept My Body

A few weeks ago, I found an email in my inbox with the subject line: “THE NAKED COMEDY SHOW RETURNS.” I opened it and learned that I was on the email list for a nudist Meetup group that I don’t remember joining. The email was an invitation to a nudist comedy show, which required everyone involved, including the audience, to be in the buff. I bought my ticket on the spot

I enjoy being naked in the comfort of my own home, probably more than the average person. The only time I’m not naked in my apartment is when I have company over, or when I’m frying food in the kitchen—it took an oil burn on my chest the size of a third nipple to learn this lesson.

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What I Learned From Teaching…Naked. | elephant journal

The space inside of us that houses our ability to accept is that same place that holds our pure love, our compassion, our courage and our ability to approach each moment outside the confines of our metaphorical clothes—that which restricts us.
To be honest, I feel more naked out in public fully clothed than I felt in that yoga room; I didn’t feel naked, I simply felt myself.

Even though most of my weekly classes require me to teach with clothes on, I now know how it feels to show up to a place exactly how I am—completely free in my own expression of self…every stitch of me, even the shredded bits.

Read more at Elephant Journal

Chinese Nudists fined for outdoor barbeque party in Wulai

Participants in an outdoor nudist barbeque party in the mountains of Wulai (烏來) in New Taipei City escaped serious punishment for offenses against public decency, after prosecutors gave them only a one-year “stayed charge.”
Prosecutors said they decided to be lenient because the party organizers had tried to safeguard their privacy and the activity took place in a secluded location.
The leaders of the nudist group, a woman surnamed Chen (陳) and a man surnamed Chu (朱), organized the au naturel barbeque event, which took place in a forest in September last year.

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Backyard gathering

A great example of social clothes free gathering lots of ordinary fun activities all clothes free

I Went to a Co-Ed Nude Spa Party, and Here’s What Really Happens (NSFW)

The warm air was thick when I slid next to the naked women spreading out in hot tubs at a dim Koreatown spa.

They were members of the Outdoor Co-ed Topless Pulp Fiction Appreciation Society, a book club for people to meet either topless or nude, depending on the venue — this was one of their fully nude events. The Society started as a safe way for women to be exercise their legal right to be topless outdoors. To be in public without a place to drop your phone becomes easier when other naked people join you. “I wouldn’t do this alone,” someone said to her friend.

It’s too damn cold to kick back in the park with your nipples out now, so they retreat indoors. Being naked in a spa isn’t exceptional behavior, but being this open with your body at a social event was. Most American spas are gender-segregated, or at least require a robe or bathing suit. But Juvenex was progressive enough.

“When they realized it was a bunch of harmless intellectuals who liked books, and not a group of Las Vegas party types, they were satisfied,” Charles Kennsington, a founding member said.

White robes came off, and gradually, more women slipped into the sugar-filled pools like you would at any spa party. But this was different. Nobody checked anyone else out. Nobody complimented anyone’s body or trashed their own. Predictably, the vibe of the place was relaxed, but their voices rose in excitement. It wasn’t just aromatherapy. Everyone seemed at ease, because, as so many of them kept explaining to me, they felt natural this way.

Read more from Styleite

Can the clothes free community survive if we go off and hive

Many months ago last winter in fact I posted a poll on the state of fragmentation in the clothes free community. I have not taken it down though I have thought about it many times. A recent post on the blog for a clothes free group geared towards young adults made me realize it continued relevance. It also got me think can the clothes free community survive if it’s simply break off is special interest groups?

American society and to a lesser degree North American society has long tradition of being more individualistic and less institutionally connected. We show a strong penchant for grouping together with our “own” kind (an innate human tendency) and less of a multi generational bent. So it is not at all surprising when any group decides to restrict its membership to a single group of people in order to cultivate a sense of belonging and community for those who fit the group criteria. Consider this recent comment on the YNA blog.

… it needs to come to the realization that there is adult nudism, gay nudism, young nudism, and public nudism (Bare to Breakers, WNBR, etc). There is no longer a “one size fits all” definition.

The question arises can the clothes free community survive if it adopts this social pattern as standard operating procedures? If each special interest group hives off into its own what then will hold the community together. How can we rally support for any clothes free cause if all we have are special “clubs”? Is this the future? Gay naturist, young naturists, straight naturists, Christian naturists, senior naturists, white naturists, student naturists, rich naturists all gather in their own groups to cultivate a sense of community while the clothes free community as a whole disintegrates? Is that strategy to get new people in clothes life bode well for the long term future of the clothes free community?

I ask all these question because I think what is happening in the clothes free community reflects a bigger social trend. I believe leave that trend towards hiving with thinner and thinner networks of people sorting in group of people only like ourselves will have huge ramifications for the clothes free communities.

Instead of focusing on our differences and the challenges they present. I think we should try to find common ground to bring groups together. I realize it is easier to grow community if those belonging to the group are like us this principle has been used for many years in many different circles to grow groups expediently. But is it effective? Is it effective when we realize that these groups often wax and wane over time and if they disappear and there is no connection beyond the group what happens to the clothes free community then? Is it effective when this approach reinforces the kind of separation that the clothes free community experiences from broader society? Is it effective to reinvent the wheel to reach every new group we want to engage in the clothes free life?

Maybe we should take a page for the South African naturist playbook and focus on regional as opposed to demographic groups with a strong connection to an umbrella group. Most of the decision making and oversight should remain with the regional groups so special regional issues can be addressed. This approach I believe allowed the recent establishment South Africa’s first official clothes ing optional beach.

The alternative in my opinion is the clothes free communities disintegrates into a fractured powerless and ineffective set of cliques and special interest groups which eventually become irrelevant. So what do you think?