We are starting out this post with a video that shows what can happened when naturism gets misunderstood. The following video includes nudity. If you’re on this site, that shouldn’t bother you, but if it does, I’ll include the transcript after my comments and reaction to the video below.
In the video, Dan asks a great question that would naturally bring more questions to the surface that perhaps have never been considered before by those who are misunderstanding. However, I want to focus my comments on the story Dan told. This story is so sad to me. I get it! A little too much. I admire a couple of things about Dan in this regard. Number one, he is absolutely honest about who and what he is. This obviously has come up to bite him and others that have had similar experiences. That’s why it’s a bit of a risk to be that upfront with everyone. In this case, the church lost a great volunteer using his gifts for the good of those in the church. It’s so sad that a, well, at least we know it to be an unwarranted worry would prevent a believer from sharing his abilities with others. The second thing I appreciate about Dan is his apparent lack of resentment towards those who made this decision on his regard. I’m sure he’s probably had to work out his frustration and anger towards these people who are simply trying to do what they think is best, even though they are mistaken. I did not detect any ill will towards these leaders on Dan’s part, and that is admirable.
For us, we haven’t taken that risk yet of coming out to the whole world as it relates to our naturist beliefs and activities. We have to be careful still as I’m certain our livelihood would suffer as a result of being “outed.” This story is a prime example of the reigning attitudes that prevail against such beliefs. It’s another tale from another friend. We’ve heard many “horror” stories from other friends about how they have been misunderstood and treated unfairly as a result of their firm convictions. However, most of them look in the rearview mirror, and see the Lord’s hand bringing beauty from those ashes as only he can.
Is it dishonest to omit every detail of your life with every person? I think it depends person you person and case by case. But no one walks up to all strangers and says for example, “Oh, hey, I love playing pickleball on the weekends! In case you needed to know!” Well, that’s a poor example as pickleballers can be even more evangelistic about their hobby as are passionate CrossFit people! Your choice of sport versus a nudist lifestyle may be an apples and oranges comparison, but the point is not everyone needs to know everything. And in this case, not everyone is ready to know everything.
I admire Dan and others that are total open books and can live that freely, but I also don’t want to belittle those that cannot yet be that free (and I am in that boat). My friend Matthew Neal has made the point many times that if you are generally perceived as being a godly man of integrity with strong morals, raising a good family, for example, then that may certainly be the truth of who you are, and people believe that about you and your reputation. (Believe me, I get that reputation isn’t everything!) Now suppose you are found out to be a nudist, with all the snap judgments made about this segment of the population. Would the truth of the earlier statement suddenly be rendered false? Would it cease being true with this added tidbit of information? To many, sadly, they would begin to believe a lie about you without having any real understanding on the issues at play or the people involved. It’s in some cases better that the partial truth be shared only with those who are trusted confidants, so that whole truth continue to be believed instead of lies and unmerited accusations.
I call for compassion for naturists in both camps, whether in some sort of “closet” out of necessity and for those who are fully “out” and dealing with some of the fallout. One of the best things about naturism is its ability to teach you to be more accepting of others and less judgmental overall. The world could use a little bit more of these attributes, could it not?
Oh, by the way, have you played pickleball yet? It’s really fun and a great workout! It’s even great to play nude when you have that option.
Here is the transcript for the video:
We went to a church that was really big on participation They wanted people to volunteer in some area over another. And my talent, and it’s been this way since I was a kid, was babies. They call me the baby whisperer, you know, and I’m drawn to babies and they’re drawn to me. You know, we make faces that each other even in the grocery store. People I don’t know, I’m standing in line behind somebody. They’ve got a baby in the car seat. Baby may be upset, and I make a funny face and the baby will stop crying and look at me. And by the time we get to the checkout counter, the baby’s laughing at me. I think it’s because I’m funny looking.
But so I volunteered for the church nursery, and I worked in the main campus of the nursery and then when we had it, we built a satellite campus. My wife and I were the nursery, but, you know, she was kind of there. She recognizes, you know, I’m the baby person, and she was kind of the assistant. But when the ministers– you know, they pulled me aside one day and talk to me about not posting on Facebook, about modeling. Because they agree it is not sinful, but they were getting questions from the people, the parents or whatever that made them uncomfortable. So they didn’t want me to really talk about it. And then when I started trying to promote my second book on Facebook, which was called “Life Models,” they just finally just asked me not to volunteer anymore.
So, yeah, it’s, there’s still a stigma attached to nudity. Just because and it’s societal. It’s not biblical, you know, and, you know, part of me wants to make just just make them ask one question. And even if it’s just once always naked, why did the soldiers think you was a prophet?
There’s an obvious answer. They might not like the answer that is so obvious. But but because that obvious answer leads to more questions and and then that kind of blows their view of the body out of the water. I think so.