The history of naturism.
There was a health nut movement in Germany wherein everybody decided to do what was natural and to therefore, take off all their clothes. Moreover, they decided that this would be a perfectly healthy family activity. Thus naturalism or as we might call in the United States, nudism was born.
Given some of the modern day cultural stereotypes, one of the most surprising aspects of the history of nudity is the fervor with which the Germans took to it. We often hear of the notion of German efficiency or of Prussian militarism. The idea of Germans running around nude might seem a little strange. Nevertheless, naturism was greeted was taken up with a will by various German philosophers and their followers before World War II.
The naturists have a word for people hopelessly addicted to the wearing of clothes. They call us textilists, or sometimes fascists. There is a movement of militant naturists to make nudity accepted in virtually every aspect of society.
Many nudists either by choice or in adherence to social norms only practice nudity when they are at home alone or when in the company of family and close friends.
Committed nudists believe themselves to be in harmony with nature. They often hold the belief that sleeping in the nude for instance is more restful and relaxing.
In ancient times it was sometimes considered to be symbolic of great holiness for the religious to walk around naked or nearly so. Going around naked shows that you have no attachment to material things like clothes and it also shows that you don’t particularly care what others think of you. You have ascended beyond merely mortal concerns.
Given some of the beneficial effects of the exposure to sunlight, such as the production of vitamin D, it comes as no surprise that nudists promoted a clothing free lifestyle as a form of heliotherapy. Exposure to strong light does help some people who live in cold dark climates overcome the effects of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
In the modern times naturism has morphed into nude beaches and resorts and a form of travel called Nakations or Naked vacations.
Nudists have problems that are unique to their culture. One is that they have to try to separate themselves from those who would use nudism for eroticism. It is the age old problem that one can display naked statues in public as long as they are not meant to promote sexual or prurient interest. Other concerns are–what about the help? Often those who work at nudist resorts are required to wear clothes for health reasons. Also, the who let you in problem. Some clubs are only open to those invited by members and who have undergone an extensive background check. Clubs with loser membership policies can have problems with those who come only to look at, or to prey upon others.
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