Wednesday, 2 October 2013

The Onsen Experience

While in Japan I was fortunate enough to experience an amazing part of Japanese culture. I learned of the great benefits of the bathing custom and how relaxing it can really be. When we think of bathing here in the western part of the world, we think of getting in the tub and scrubbing down. While this is true in Japan they do use this time to scrub down after a long day at the office or being out and about however, there seems to be another element to the whole process.

Bathing has been a long time tradition in Japan and some other parts of asia. Japanese used to bath in public bath houses called “Sento”. This was because most people could not afford a bath in the family home so off to the sento they would all go. Many decades ago these sento used to be mixed gender known as “Konyoku”, The whole family would go and wash and relax in the warm steamy bathing areas. Now this was in a time when the idea of mixed nude bathing was not even a thought in the forefront of the mind, it was simply done an no body had any hangups about it. Now days the Konyoku almost does not exist any more. The only place true konyoku exist now are deep in the mountains in natural hot springs called “Onsen”. They can be accessed but are usually very difficult to get to and quite often involve a little bit of hiking.
As the economic wealth of the average family increased so did the ability for them to afford a bath in the family home. This has changed the social element of the sento which are usually located in and around the cities. People no longer socialised as a community from the neighbourhood they would go as a family unit as a night/day out and most likely not as regularly. Families will go for relaxation and now days they are split by gender as social attitudes changed toward mixed gender nudity. Dads will go off with the boys and or son in-law or friends, and likewise for the mums.

The etiquette of bathing in Japan is different to the way we bath in the western part of the world. When one enters a bathing area be it at home or in a sento/onsen the rules are the same. When you arrive in the onsen the first thing you do after you pay is to go to the respective dressing room, strip down nude and make your way into the bathing area. Next, you must rinse or wash your body before entering the bath and the bath is not for washing but soaking only. This is the reason a whole family can use the same bath in a night as they do not make the water dirty and the bath is designed to keep the water hot and filtered. Many onsen/sento have a few different kinds of baths ranging from mineral, cold, extra hot and many more including green or red tea. After a relaxing soak in the bath(s) people would then spend time scrubbing down shampooing and all the personal hygiene acts one would normally perform during wash time. They sometimes also have outside baths called “Rotenburo”, these are magnificent in winter when it is cold outside and the steamy 42deg water is up around your shoulders!

Going to an onsen or sento can be daunting for those not familiar or comfortable with nudity in a public setting but its not all that bad. The key to enjoying the experience is to simply follow every body else and pretend you have been there a million times. As a nudist I never had this issue and it felt like such a natural thing to do. I did learn how good bathing can be for the body and soul. I found my body was not as sore every day and my injuries from a car accident was never a problem even when it was cold. Its a good chance to de stress and relax after a long day at work and until I learned to bath every night before bed I never knew what I was missing. Now as we have been back in australia for some time now I do truly miss the night time bath and even more the Onsen.

I will be looking forward to visit Japan again with my family and as usual we will go to an Onsen and I will enjoy it immensely! If you should ever travel to Japan or even Korea it would do you well to seek out an onsen or sento, your hotel staff can direct you to one and most big hotels will have either their own or a partnership allowing guests to use another hotels or a local establishment.

Give it a try and lose yourself in the amazing custom of the Japanese bathing experience.

Monday, 16 September 2013

You never Know Who Is In The Audience

I am a firm believer that if you tell people about your love and passion for the sans clothes lifestyle you will be surprised at the response they give you. I have two situations that have transpired into something I completely did not expect. One of these situations has now led me to a position where a good friend of mine is calling me her nude guru.

This amazing woman already knew I was a nudist and not till recently did I discover that she was considering the lifestyle to tackle body issues and attempt to break free from her shackles of negative energy she had taken on over the years. It only came about when I asked her opinion on a naturist issue. Before long the conversation led to her saying she had been thinking about giving it a try. So without hesitation I offered my advice and some tips to help the initial transition from being clothed to unclothed, offering ideas such as staying nude after the shower for a short wile or as long as she felt comfortable.

As time has progressed I discovered that she had acted on my tips and was moving forward at a steady pace. She can now look herself in the mirror full view in the nude and accept herself as she is and she has no problems standing in the hallway talking to her housemates while nude. All of this because we had a discussion about nudism, the ideals of the lifestyle and the way they  can help change a person’s positive outlook on life.  My dear friend is now quite comfortable with the idea of nudism although it will take some time for her to take the leap of faith and go to a public beach or resort. She is yet to transition to spending the day or weekend nude at home however, is now much more comfortable with nudity in general. As most of us nudies know, once you feeel the comfort and relaxation of being nude for long periods of time you don’t want to return to the clothed life.

The second situation stemmed from a conversation with a supplier rep, who came to visit my workplace. We had spoken before and he is a great guy to have a good chinwag with. We were talking about Japan and how he had been a few times and enjoyed the Onsen (Japanese hot springs) so much that he had to go every time he went to Japan. When I told him stories of how people asked me if I was terrified about being nude in these places he chimed in and said he used to live in Europe and nudity was much more accepted over there amongst peers. He then mentioned off hand that he had lots of nudist buddies and he visited a nude beach in north Queensland. That’s when I revealed I was a nudist and the conversation lead to us discovering that we both had some mutual friends in the nudist community.

As it happens, he has been living a great life as a nudist and even had the opportunity to introduce some people to it also, tho they didn’t take it on they still enjoyed the lifestyle and learned how great the people in this community can be.

If we had never spoken about the onsen, we would never have known that the other was a nudist. If I didn’t share my passion for nudism I would never have had the opportunity to help a friend change her life, and if e we don’t speak to anybody we will never be able to teach others the beauty of this amazing way of life.

So, to all my fellow nudists and naturists and to all my followers who may not be nudists please, if the opportunity arises do not be scared to have a good, frank discussion about nudity and this amazing lifestyle.  Nudists share you passion and non-nudists show your support. You never know who is in the audience.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

How Do I Convert Others?

A common Issue people have with Naturism/Nudism is they have trouble convincing their partners to join in. This is something that should be addressed carefully as it is not something many people would ever consider doing. We are not here to convert but rather educate people about how wonderful our lifestyle can be. Its not the conversion that is important but rather acceptance. Being accepted by the rest of society with an open mind and non-prudish attitudes will naturally bring more to the ranks of nudism. Unfortunately most of society will follow the salmon run and not think for themselves but rather latch on to sensationalist media and poorly presented press about a lifestyle that is so often miss represented. This in turn creates a miss interpretation of what we are all about.

If you are in a relationship and have recently revealed you are a nudist, depending on the reaction of your partner you may get a very different response to the suggestion of joining the fun of such a wonderful lifestyle.

If your partner accepts what you do and holds no objections or reservations about how often you are undertaking your love of nudism then you may be well received in an invite to your local nude beach. How well received will depend on a few elements within your relationship. Firstly, how long have you been together? If you just started dating good luck!! Unless your partner is very open minded and has no hangups about trying new and adventurous things. If you have been together for a while there may be enough trust and enough discussion about the ethos behind what you do to open a small window of curiosity. This may lead to a healthy growth toward a open view on an alternative lifestyle.

Have you had discussions about what naturism is and why you love it so much? If not then now is a good time to start. Never lead in with "Do you want to give it a try? or Get naked with me". This can be off-putting, especially for one who had probably never thought about being naked for any other reason than having a shower. Uplift the lifestyle by talking about the positives in your life and how it has made you who you are today. Be sure to address the negatives also but make sure they are kept in context and re-affirm the the good far outweigh the bad. If we don't discuss how we feel about naturism/nudism and open peoples mind to the concept that nudity does not equal sex then there will be no advance in the acceptance of a relaxing and beautiful lifestyle.

If you have had discussions about Naturism and they have all shown positive response then it may be a good chance to offer an experience at a nude beach. Remind them that they don't have to be nude and they can remove as much or as little of their bathing suit as they wish. It is far better they see the locations and how everybody there behaves than them taking the plunge and freaking out about a first public nude experience.

If on the other hand you are in a relationship where your partner does not like what you do, then your pretty much stuck between a rock and a hard place. Your partner will most definitely not want to join you and will most likely not like you frequenting nude beaches and nudist venues. For reasons only they know they will forever be closed to the concept of nude recreation until somebody opens them up to it. The only way find out what makes your partner dislike your activities so much is to front up and ask. It may be the kick-start to a conversation (or feisty debate) giving you the chance to demonstrate that your lifestyle choice is nothing more than a relaxing way of life sans clothes.

The most common problems I've heard from nudists is that they cant tell family or friends what they do because of fear from being ridiculed or that their family wont accept it and call them dirty or other nasty names. It is also often that I hear the partner does not like what they do. Of all the people that should support you it is your partner... but this is about converting others. When we talk about converting others as mentioned above, we are not trying to convert them to nudism/naturism, we are trying to convert their thoughts or opinions about nudism/naturism. They way someone percieves you and what you do is very important in being able to change their opinion on what they dont understand.

The reason I led with partners is because it is usually the partner that carries the most influence on a persons personal life and the support they get from this person is important to how they feel about their lifestyle. If you are made to feel like nudism is wrong or dirty then you will eventually portray it that way. You will do it in secret and never talk about it openly with others and make a conversation out of it. With full support you can talk about it more openly and not be ashamed about you love of the lifestyle.

People who know you and have known you for many years or since you were a child would probably surprise you in the response they give when you tell them you are a nudist/naturist. They might have a bit of a poke at you and tease you a little but they know you as a person and they know your character so in all reality will probably support you and most likely not really think much of it. I did reveal via Facebook not so long ago because I was tired of hiding my lifestyle and picking and choosing who to tell and who not to tell so I decided to just open up and reveal to all. Every one now knows in my family and friends and nobody really cares. I still cant be nude in their company, except for the few friends that already knew and have already told me I can do so whenever they are around, but the main point is that it is out in the open.

So now to the question of how to convert them. Well it not really that difficult really. There may be some who have very strong opinions about what they believe the lifestyle is all about and may offer a quite strong resistance to being swayed from their views. Don't be discouraged, there are not that many of them around and they probably wont really care what you do with your personal life any way. The best way to convert a person it to talk to them, be open about this aspect of your life and be straight forward about your views, the positives and negatives of the lifestyle. Don't let peoples fears of the unknown draw you into a firestorm debate but rather help address them and show them that Nudism/naturism is simply another way of life.

Invite your friends to your local nude beach so they can see what goes on. They don't have to get their kit off but go as a group and show them how great it can be and introduce them to some of you nudist buddies. Just tell them you want to show them first hand what it is like out there in the nudist community. If anything it will be an experience they will never forget. Who knows they may get their kit off any way!!

If you love this lifestyle and you want to become more involved in promoting it then you have the obligation to be honest with yourself and the people around you and let them know what you are all about. You may as well because if you end up getting a lucky break and get an interview on a major TV network they will find out any way. You are your ambassador for your way of life, be proud of who you are and what you believe in. We aren't trying to convert others to nudism, we are trying to convert them to accept nudism.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

How long does it take to become a nudist?

This is not a question I hear at all really but when I look back on my journey as a nudist I see that I actually wasn’t really a “full on” nudist for the good part of about 10 years. I loved being naked and wished I could be naked all the time but I didn’t identify as a nudist till I was in my mid 20s. It was at his time when I actively began searching for groups and people to meet with who shared my love for the nude mode of living.

The time at which someone would consider themselves a nudist differers from person to person. Some will discover this lifestyle and almost immediately fall in love with it and begin to identify from the on set. Others will simply develop a love for the nudist way of life but simply enjoy it for what it is and think no more of it. There are probably some who simply just enjoy not wearing clothes and don’t wish to identify as a nudist. As I have described in my journey I was enjoying the nude life where I could for the good part of 10 years before I called myself a nudist. My choice was simply because I did not know there was such a thing or such a name for the life I wanted to live.

The more difficult part about being a nudist for many would be the secrecy around their new found lifestyle. Many fear the worst if they were to tell family or friends about what they do. Fear of ridicule, hatred, being shunned from their circle of friends, and the list goes on. Could this be the reason some don’t identify so easily? This could be possible but who knows. There is one thing for sure, there are many who wear the nudist uniform proudly and have no problems telling people they are nudists.

If we as a collective of people want to uplift the names of our respective clubs and improve peoples understanding about nudism we should be proud to admit and identify ourselves as nudists. I felt the change in the universe the moment I opened up and told all about my life as a nudist. I can now be proud to identify as a nudist and feel no more restriction when I want to participate in events or even try to organise our own.

So I guess true identification as nudists in my opinion comes from the revelation that you are one because how can anyone be identified if no body know who they are? My revelation came about 20 years after I discovered the lifestyle. I called myself a nudist for 10 of those years but only truly identified myself 10 years after that, when I opened up my lifestyle to my family and friends. It has been one of the best decisions I have made in my life and do not regret it at all.

Find the courage to believe in who you are and find your identity so that you can share a beautiful unique lifestyle with those around you. I could be the very thing that makes you truly feel like you.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Im still here

Yes I know I know, I have been lazy/busy/pre occupied but im just letting you all know im still here and working on a new blog. Rest assured as a proud and avid nudey i have been lazy/busy and pre occupied mostly naked when I can.

Keep an eye out for a new blog coming soon.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Random thought

Imagine you have been hiding from your family and friends the fact that you are a nudist. It has been so for many years and something you wish you could just get out in the open(no pun intended).

Then one day you are at a nude beach or camping at a nude resort and casually strolling by is your aunty and uncle or a work colleague. Or someone you have known for years.

How would you feel? Has this ever happened to you? Or is it a dream that you have always wanted to happen chance find out someone close to you is a nudist.

It hasn't happened to me but ooohh I wish. May be one day... Who knows what the universe has planned for me.

Friday, 1 March 2013

The Locker Room

Tho not really a nudist issue as much as its a body issue, I have noticed that there seems to be a vast number of men who I would assume have body issues or rather insecurities about their genitals. Why do I say this you may ask? Well its something I noticed when I went into locker/change rooms at the swimming pool or gym. From what I have been told and I'm only referencing from my experiences between Australia and a few Asian countries Ive been in, women tho its common for women to have body issues and hangups about thighs, bum, legs breasts or any number of things on their bodies when in the change room have very little hang up about nuding up showering and moving through the locker room for the purpose of getting changed to or from their sports gear/bathers etc. Men however, typically I have not heard of any such hangups about their bodies although men never talk about their genitals with other men, will almost in every occasion I have been in a locker room here in Australia shower with their undies on, dress with a towel on and hide themselves tho not from modesty but from who knows what. Is it because men never talk about body issues? Are they really that in secure about their bodies or is it they are insecure about their genitals? Or do they simply not want other men to see their dangly bits?

In my travels to Japan, Korea, and Singapore I have been in locker rooms in all these countries and have seen exactly the opposite. Why do men in these countries seem to not have any hang ups about being nude in front of other men? Only they will know. Perhaps its cultural. when you look at the lifestyle and things that these people do for relaxation we may find the answer there. Lets pick Japan for instance, I lived there for about a year and a half. My beautiful wife is Japanese and I have spent quite a number of hours in the hot springs and public baths over there. The public bathing culture is very rich and stems back many centuries, as it does in Korea and some parts of Europe and Greece in particular.

Going into these bath houses may not be every ones cup of tea however, there is a certain etiquette involved. When you get inside you strip off all your clothes, dump them into a basket on a pigeon hole style shelving and make your way to the bathing area. The first rule in the bathing area is that you are naked in the bathing area. Yes naked!!! What a big surprise!! think about it this way, would you shower with your bathers on at home? probably not. Second, you wash or rinse off before entering the bath. And third you wash/scrub after your soak and before you get ready to leave. As little as a couple of decades ago public bath houses were mixed gender and were frequented by families as many people could not afford their own bath in their homes. Only more recently have they become gender separated due to changes in the mentality in society. Because every one is naked and this has been common practice for such a long time, the generally nudity is much more accepted in context. Most of these Japanese Korean and Singaporean cultures are less open about social nudity and nudity in public spaces however, in the context of bathing in a public bath house there is an unspoken acceptance when a man or woman walks around the locker room naked after showering or while they shave or dry hair. It seems there is no need for these men or women to scramble to put their clothes on (with some exceptions tho not so common) after relaxing in the baths or finishing a workout in the gym.

It is interesting to observe the behavior of people in different situations in respect to nudity. We are told that being nude is wrong and offensive when nudity alone is not sexualized and lewd, when on the other side of the coin, the same people that tell us "oh no!!! I could never be naked around other people and strangers!!" are happy to go shopping for bikinis that are ultimately designed to draw attention to the person wearing them. All clothing in fact has the same design factors in mind. Women are constantly bombarded with images of how they should look, and now more than before men also. Constantly being told that we are fat, or over weight or not fashionable if we aren't wearing the latest style clothing. Don't get me wrong, I love good and nice looking clothes we we go out but it doesn't dictate the way I decide what I think of my body and personality.

Is  this the demise of our individuality? Is it the beginning of a social culture which takes us to the point of not even being comfortable enough to change in front of others of our own gender? Stripping away the layers of clothing can be like stripping away the layers of societies ill conceived values. If you are nude then no body knows what you do or how much money you have. They will have to talk to you to find out more about you. Oh but that would mean I have to interact with people!!! Funny, that's what people used to do. If you are willing to talk to somebody and have a conversation you may just find they don't care about your penis, boos, bum, belly or any other part of your body.

So here we go, trundling back into the locker room. If we all spoke to each other instead of hiding silently in the corner of the locker room we may find that we are all the same. We may find the atmosphere becomes less awkward and we forget that we are standing face to face all nuded up while we rummage for our socks in our bag.

People go to the gym to look good and feel good about them selves and to improve their health and fitness. Some do the same at the swimming pools, while others are there with their children and family or friends. We all have a good time doing what we do and feel good when we do it but I feel that subconsciously there are many that don't feel good about themselves, or parts of themselves. Surely this must be the result of the conditioning of society, schools media and religious orders telling us that we need to look or behave like a model or public figure. If we are to learn to accept ourselves then we must realize that what all these groups tell us, it is not the way we should think about our selves. We do not need to be super skinny, we do not need to have big breasts or large picture perfect genitals or rock hard abs. We do need to look after our health and with that will come better shaped bodies and flat tummies, we still wont look like an air brushed pin up model, but we will be happy and we wont have the hangups we do in our lives.

If there is one thing I have learned from being a nudist, its that we are all the same and all we need to do is talk with one another. Nudists are among the friendliest people I have met and generally do not care what you do or how much you are worth. They care about the value of your opinions and beliefs and how you conduct your life as a decent human being. They care not so for the way society dictates that we must all fit a certain mold. And yes, I do change full nude, shower nude and walk to and from my belongings in the nude inside the locker rooms. Give it a try...... its not that bad.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

A New Chapter

Hi All,

I have been quiet here for a while as i have been in the process of moving from Melbourne to Queensland. We have started a new chapter in our life, and hopefully a new chapter in the nudist world. The weather is fantastic here for nudist and am working hard a forging new relationships to help strengthen the ndist community.

I look forward to returning to the blogasphere and expanding the content of this blog.

See you all soon!!!

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

What to do when you cant be nude

What can you do when you cant be nude? Ask...

I recently decided to take the plunge and ask my mother in law who is visiting for a month and a half if she would mind if I swam with my son nude in the pool. She had no problems and said yes straight away. So off I went and stripped down right in front of her and jumped into the pool. By no means can I be nude all the time but I am able to do my usual nude routine and move between the bathroom bedroom and occasionally chase my son through the house to bring him to the shower.

We had a short conversation shortly after the initial ok was given and she said there was no problems with it. I figured that if she was going to stay with us for more than a month I would want to at least try and get in some of my usual nude activities.

So I cant be nude all the time but I have at least a compromise that I don't have to hide when I want to swim shower or go to the loo in the night or even get dressed in the morning in my living room as usual for work. So What do I gather from all this? Not everybody is afraid to see someone they know nude so if there is a chance you might want to be nude in their company for what ever reason, there is a chance they may allow you. All you have to do is ask.