Original article to be found at the aanaturist-blog.
Imagine if you will that this blog wasn’t about naturism, but about camping and backpacking. In my theoretical camping blog I’d write about my travels, offer advice, discuss issues within the camping/backpacking community, and show you pictures of my trips. No one would get upset about pictures of Yosemite or the Grand Canyon. But in reality my blog isn’t about camping, but nude recreation and the naturist lifestyle.
Since its early days, naturism has been portraying the nude human body in photography. In fact, it was nudist magazines that set the legal precedent for nude images to be published. Up until 1958, it was illegal for nudist magazines to be mailed by the U.S. Postal Service. In SUNSHINE BOOK COMPANY v. SUMMERFIELD, The U.S. District Court of Columbia ruled that nudist magazines could be mailed. This decision also created the precedent for Playboy and other magazines to be published.
The nude human body is the core of our lifestyle, it’s what defines our philosophy and our outlook. And when discussing our way of living, how can we describe it? Sure I can drone on forever about nude recreation in words and sentences. However, nothing describes who we are or what we believe than a picture. Many of my readers recall that my own foray into naturism began by seeing images of non-sexual nudity. Naturist photos act like ambassadors to non-naturists, demonstrating what nude recreation is like.
Seeing nude photos helps eliminate equating nudity only with sexual activity. For the vast majority of Americans, nudity is akin to sexual activity. Movies, TV, and the internet teach us that mere nudity is only erotic. Seeing non-sexual nudity is the first step to removing society’s warped conditioning.
Nude photos also fosters body acceptance. I used to hate how my body looked. I thought I wasn’t the “ideal” body, or a body fit to be a naturist. But seeing many different people nude has changed my outlook. I have finally learned to accept myself, and accept others.
Now I’m not naïve, I know that our lifestyle attracts the wrong people. It’s a sad fact. Our photos can be exploited by some really sick and warped minds. Case in point: naturist photos used to show pictures of entire families, but now because of a few perverts, no naturist in their right minds would allow photos of their children to be posted online. Another sad fact is that the term “naturism” has been hijacked by the porn industry. But this isn’t the fault of naturism or nude recreation. Blaming naturists for having their photos exploited is like blaming a woman for being sexually assaulted because she was wearing a risqué dress. The accountability should be placed on the victimizer and not the victim. I’m not going to stop being a naturist because of a few losers.
Nude photos are a part of naturism. Nudity is part of the naturist experience, but the biggest part of the naturist lifestyle is what takes place between the ears and not the legs. Nude photos serve only as an example of what naturist activities are. There is nothing shameful about the naked human body. The only “shameful” part of nudity is those who exploit it for the wrong reasons.