Memento Mori

You’ve probably heard or read that one before. Memento Mori. I was surprised to find something unexpected when I looked for an image for this.

Memento Mori
Remember, you can die.

Almost always this is depicted with a skull. Perhaps a common thing in the US, but not in the Netherlands, where I reside. Ah well, learnt something new today.

A few days ago I heard a podcast about Memento Mori. A good one, explaining that this is not a warning but a reminder. A reminder that we will all die someday, and therefore we shouldn’t postpone things until later – because later may never come.

The podcast speaker (presenter?) also said that Memento Mori is the opposibe of the oh-so-beloved bucket list, the list with things people want to do later.

Why wait? Why not do it now, because now you’re alive and able to do it – and remember doing it. And perhaps up to doing it again.

If there’s a nude beach you want to visit and you have the option now, do it. If there’s a nude resort you plan on visiting, do it now. (I can recommend the Mighty Oaks, the staff there is great! 😉 )

Body paint magic

Listening to this podcast I realised that there are 2 lives. 1 that keeps you alive (as in gets the food, the rent paid, and stuff like that) and 1 that you need to fulfill as much as you can when you can. The life that you want to live now. The body painting, the nude events, the naked bike rides, the nude swims.

Putting them off to a time that may never come is a sad thing. And trust me (or not, up to you), once you’ve done all those things, you won’t end up with nothing left to do, because each event, each happening will open a new door, new options to do and try too.

I think this is part of the magic we can create for ourselves and each other. Create options and events, and invite others. Together the magic is even bigger. And don’t put them on the bucket list. Put them on the list of things done, the list you can look at with pride.

Change what you can

We all want the entire world to become naturist. Or at least, that the entire world accepts naturists as sane and full members of society. We don’t want to be seen as weirdos, or – even worse – perverts and child molesters.

By now we all know that it’s easy to reach the entire world, because we have this crazy little thing called Internet. At the same time, we should realise that it’s not possible to change the entire world. Some folks will want to listen. Others are stuck in their ways and ruts so deeply that no mammoth tanker or Kenworth truck can pull them out of it.

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It’s important to know where our boundaries are. Not in the way of self-limiting where we want to and can be nude in nature, but in the way of recognising who we can (try to) change (as in perspective about nudity) and who’s beyond help / hope.

Some people will keep running into the same wall forever, hoping to bring it down. Kudos for determination, but minus several hundred points for smart, because it is a waste of energy and time. Energy and time that can better be used to be nude with others, to enjoy the time we have. It’s also possible that such determination will have an adverse effect on that wall (those people who don’t want to see our ways). The people who keep trying will be seen as annoying, pests and other bad things, which is not helping the reputation of naturists anywhere. “The wall” has access to this crazy little Internet as well, and they can spread anti-propaganda towards naturism.

P.Z. Walker
P.Z. Walker

So let’s be smart about this whole ‘conversion’ thing. Don’t go out of your way trying to change everything and everyone.

Go where it’s convenient, where you have a proper chance for change. Let that do its work, because the more people are in a specific mindset, the more overall consciousness will shift. That shift will be slow, and we may not see the definitive change, but it will happen if we do this the smart way.

Catch a Sunrise

The Pythagoreans bid us in the morning look to the heavens that we may be reminded of those bodies that continually do the same things and in the same manner perform their work, and also be reminded of their purity and nudity. For there is no veil over a star. 

(Marcus Aurelius – Meditations XI.27)

Marcus Aurelius was a stoic. (I have touched on stoicism before on this blog.)

Lately, I’ve been delving into stoicism a bit more. There is a lot of information out there, like the Daily Stoic Podcast, which has shorter and longer episodes. I love the short ones, up to ten minutes, that show a lot of cleverness in little time.

Paul nude outside

So what does stoicism have to do with naturism? On first glance: nothing at all. And yet, I’ve been thinking about this over the past few days, and there are points that work, that fit and touch.

One of the stoic ideas is not to worry or get anxious over things in advance. Suppose you want to take a nude hike in a place where there’s not a big risk of “getting caught”. Do you worry about getting caught before going there? It’s not worth the energy to worry about it, even though us humans have been taught / conditioned to do that. Because everyone else does it.

This is what stops many people from doing things. The “What if” monster, that looms over our thoughts and actions.
Yes, you want to go on that hike. Yes, there might be people who see you. Yes, there are people who get ‘upset’ or who are ‘offended’ by nudity. Be ready for a comment, have an answer ready. Or, if you’re scared that you’ll be photographed in the nude while you don’t want that, don’t go and feel good about that. And then, just let it go. Don’t beat yourself up about the fact that maybe nothing might have happened, because then you roll back into the “What if” trap again. Decide, accept and move on.

Seneca
Seneca

Another stoic idea, from Seneca this time, is to look at clothes for their real purpose. (I mentioned this in the first post that I already referenced.)

This doesn’t mean Seneca was going around naked all the time, but it shows that there is more to the idea than ‘we naturists’ attribute to it. Wearing clothes for their real purpose is the smart way.

For instance when it’s cold. Or when it’s dangerous to be naked (e.g. risking splinters, burns or other dangerous situations), clothes, as in ‘coverings’, make sense.

Stoicism, for me, points out a lot of idiocy in the real world. Many people think that stoics never have any fun, that they lack emotion. They accept that things come to an end and (try to) live accordingly.

Maybe this quote from Seneca says it all in the best way:

As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.

Seneca

Jerome Naturel

Last week I listened to the newest Naturist Living show podcast.

It’s an interview with a Belgian man who got to be known as Jerome Naturel.

I enjoyed this episode so much that I’m pointing it out here, and I hope you will take the time to have a listen. Jerome goes quite in-depth about his path to being where he is now, and I think it holds lots of interesting ideas and steps for many of us to copy.

So please, listen and perhaps pick up some good things from it!

Clothes and the fear.

For fun I post a quote on Twitter every day. Or at least almost every day.

A few days ago it was:

I wonder who wears the pants in a house full of nudists…

A clever reaction was:

Obviously metaphorical ones

To which I added:

Yes! Facebook (Meta) for clothes! Considering how allergic they are to nudity when it’s not porn.

facebook censorship

I thought it a funny pun on Meta-forical. Then I thought: what if this is true? What if they are so tight-assed about nudity out of fear? Their rules are impenetrable if it comes to nude things. They even remove images of naked statues, after all.

As long as they, and many other equally anal retentive organisations keep this fear-pressure going, they got you. (Oh, right, the latest edition of WordPress will not let me type quotation marks, so that is why you see none in this post.)

Their interpretation of a safe environment is so far away from reality in some ways that it is laughable, if it were not so sad.

For that reason I am very happy that Twitter, for now, is not such a place. Nor is MeWe. Even the Diaspora network is very cool with nudity, as long as you mark posts with the #nsfw tag. That will sort of hide the posts for people who do not want to see them.

Clearly not safe for work. But it depends on your job, right?

Fear is a powerful tool for places. As long as they can keep someone in their fear, by making someone feel stronger or better because s/he is not like that, they got them.

It is a sad thing that setting up a decent naturist social medium is a lot of work, and probably also quite an investment. This because most people are used to social media being free, so they will (probably) expect that from a naturist social medium as well. I only know of one such place, and that is naktiv.net. Yes, I have an account there, but the last time I was there, I found that the place was becoming more sexual than naturist. Perhaps that has changed since then, but I did not have the time (and often also no energy) to go there and check things out. Perhaps over the weekend, who knows.

Do you know nudist-friendly social media? Maybe you can help kindred spirits to find a safe place to be.

Which, of course, takes naturism and nudity to the old places. Secret places, behind (digital) fences. The places from where we want to escape.

It is a difficult thing, right? How do you feel about this?

Nudies down under

You may have guessed it. This post attempts to put the spotlight on naturism in Australia, and perhaps also New Zealand. Let’s see how far I can drag this out. 😉

Without a doubt, naturism is popular enough in Australia. There are plenty of Australian websites dedicated to naturism, there’s an Australian nudist podcast called The Naked Nerd, and on all the social media that allow nudity (i.e. Twitter and Mewe) you can find lots of naturists from down under as well.

As we all know, Australia has its special charms, in the form of creepy crawlies. Getting naked there requires some additional attention for those creatures, I would assume. Note that I’ve never been to Australia, so I have to rely on the tales of eye witnesses and other experience-experts.

Naturism in Australia is popular enough for its own magazine: TAN Magazine.

TAN magazine

I’ve scanned their website for a bit and I found lots of interesting articles there, for instance about problems with naturism vs. your loved ones, something on art, naturist communities like the Townsville Naturist Community, and much more. I was actually pleasantly surprised about this magazine!

Australia also has a Naked Gardening Day:

“Grin and Bare It” isn’t just about that though, it’s an extensive series of videos, well made (I watched a few) and ‘safe’ enough to be hosted on Youtube. It’s worth having a look.

And, of course, Australia has its own Naturist Federation. This shouldn’t surprise anyone.

Australian Naturist Federation

For more information on Australian naturism, please head over to the website of the Australian Naturist Federation.

And if you want to dive right in, follow this link to a site that lists the seven best nudist beaches in Australia.

(Sorry, New Zealand. Maybe next time…)

Flow Fitness Runner walking belt

Yes, I got me a walking belt. That may sound weird, so here is what I mean:

Walking belt Flow Fitness Runner
Flow Fitness Runner

You may wonder why I got this thing when it’s perfectly possible to walk outside.

Correct on many levels. However, the nasty season is coming along again (a.k.a. autumn and winter), and then walking outside isn’t always a bundle of fun. Rain, cold, snow, ice, and that list has some variations, and all of those don’t really appeal to me to go outside.

Flow runner

That is why I bought this Flow Fitness Runner, although with its top speed of 6km/h it is not exactly ‘runner’. But I got it for walking. As you can see, it fits under a table when folded up (big advantage).

It comes with a remote control and an app on the phone. Using it is really simple. Switch it on, get on the belt and make it go. Then walk until you feel it was enough (or until you reached a goal you set).

The display shows speed, time, steps and distance in sequence, so you can easily keep track of your goals. And best of all: it works naked as well as clothed. And honestly, who wants to walk clothed inside the house?

Treadmill

Now, some of you clever clogs might wonder why I didn’t straight away buy a big serious treadmill that also allows for running and has a cup holder (we can’t live without cup holders, right?) and all that jazz.

There are a few good reasons for that. 1 is: I don’t have the space for it. I looked for a fold-up treadmill. Didn’t find one. 2: I don’t run any more. I stopped after my back told me that running was not a good idea.

Work

Walking and calling on treadmill

The cool thing with this apparatus is also that I can have it in ‘sleep’ mode during the work day. Once I have a longer phone call to do, I can step on it, start walking and do the phone call. Easy peasy.

It is clear, I hope, that I won’t wear a suit, like the bloke in the picture. Working at home is working naked, so calls and walks are done in the same ‘fashion’.

No one notices and everyone is happy.

Do you own indoor fitness stuff like this? I hope you do, and that you can use it often.

Cloth Vader. The dark side of clothing

You probably know this gentleman. Darth Vader. Seeing his clothing, I doubt that he was aware of the idea that being naked can be a relief.

However… his mental attitude was mostly a bad one during the series.

In an older blog post I already talked about the way that the fashion industry is a big bad player in the pollution ‘industry’.

The whole affair is taking a step in an even worse direction: climate change and the heating up of areas. The whole pollution part must have an effect on the climate, with all the mess that’s put into the ground and the water. But the all-hallowed clothes have an effect on air conditioner sales as well. I am convinced of that. And air conditioners have a few bad sides:

  • They consume energy which has to be created, which in turn will add to the heat that is already in the atmosphere. (Hello America and Canada, heat domes?)
  • Air conditioners produce a lot of heat as well, which is conveniently blown into the atmosphere. (Heat dome revisited.)

I really wonder how much difference there would be if more people were to strip off their Cloth Vader and thus reduce part of the need for air conditioning. Yes, part of it, because I’m not stupid. Temperatures that go up to 45 and 50 degrees Celsius (113 – 125 F) or more aren’t for humans, no matter how nude they are.

Naked people nude beach

Nude upper bodies.

Or: people can be bat-shit crazy and totally inconsistent.

A few days ago on MeWe I followed a post that was copied from a Dutch newspaper. Granted, it is a newspaper that thrives on sensational content, but the background of the article made me shake my head.

Note: this is not the man who is mentioned.

The “problem” of the lady who was interviewed in the news paper article was that she found it ‘distasteful’ to see men with bare upper bodies outside, despite the heat. She mentions ‘men with double B breasts, hair everywhere and beer bellies‘.

In the same article, however, she says: ‘This all is fine up to a point‘ (what? First it’s distasteful and then it is ‘fine up to a point’?).

The first valid claim in the article: ‘Can I do the same, being a woman? I don’t think so.’ … ‘This is discrimination.‘ Even though I suspect she would never actually do that, this is the only point in the entire article I can get behind. This is indeed discrimination and it should stop.

This kind of discrimination is a blemish on the freedom of people. Women should be allowed to be topless just as well. As it is the case in many places in, surprisingly enough, the United States. The ‘Free the nipple‘ movement has played a part in that too.

I keep hammering on the problem that religion slipped into ‘our culture’ that nudity is a bad thing. It’s not. It’s a way of religion to control the masses, and it’s been so successful that the idea has become mainstream. And the brainwashing has become so successful that people into that mindset aren’t even aware of it. They, like the lady with the complaint, prefer to take away even more freedom, unaware of the many things that have already been taken away from them (and us).

Nude is not rude

As this picture shows, nude is not rude. It’s perfectly fine, liberating. People are having fun, and it’s something that should be allowed for everyone. But as long as mainstream thinking is convinced of the opposite, we’re fighting a battle. Most of the time it’s an uphill one, but I think we have to keep it up. Otherwise the ‘mainstream’ will wash over us and take the few rights we have (beaches, resorts, parks) away. We can’t allow that.

It’s bad enough that women are discriminated against in many parts of the world. Let’s try and turn that tide, not make it seize control over everything.

Be who you are

Be who you are. Not who the world wants you to be.

Paul nude outside

This is one of the tweets I send out almost every day.

It sounds so simple, but if there is a group of people that sticks to it as much as possible, I think it’s the naturist community. The nudists, the clothes-free folks, the ones that drop their garments as soon as it’s convenient and possible.

Being real, being us, is what scares so many others. We’re not afraid to be ourselves, without artificial clothing additives. Come to think of it, the fact that we are us, with all our flaws, scars and odd bits showing, is what scares the textile the most, perhaps.

Because in their hearts they know they look like us. They too have their scars, dimples, wobbles, flab and whatever imperfection we have to show. With the difference that we show them and we’re fine with that. They aren’t. They feel safe in their artificial environment. In who the world wants them to be.