Naturism and Scripture

Are you just curious about nudism / naturism? A new naturist? Been one a long time? You can tell us how & why you got started. Just a sentence or a paragraph is enough. You're not ready for naturism yet? That's OK, you can even say so here. New Comers please post here. ALL NUDIST COMMENTS WELCOME HERE!

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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby Petros » Tue Jun 17, 2014 3:01 pm

Ramblinman:

Indeed, mine was simply a throwaway interjection [can one DO that?] not a researched, nuanced. contextualized note.

Tea in the senior common room, not discussion following your conference paper.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby nature » Tue Jun 17, 2014 4:08 pm

Thanks for all the info.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby natman » Wed Jun 18, 2014 11:35 am

Petros wrote:The public baths very early got condemned. A Roman habit and it is alleged some of the bath actvities were not what they might have been - or WERE what they might have been.


Actually, public, mixed-gender bathing long before the Romans and was common in rivers, streams and wherever cities existed. The pools around Jerusalem had been there since the time of David and probably earlier (mentioned in the books of Kings and Isaiah), used for bathing and ritual cleaning, particularly during feasts, festivals and passovers.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby nature » Wed Jun 18, 2014 4:44 pm

Thanks for the help. I've just finished reading the Biblical Purpose of Clothing from the Biblical Naturist. Very well written and laid out.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby jasenj1 » Wed Jun 18, 2014 5:18 pm

What Petros' comment shows is that this controversy about nudity goes back a VERY long time. We are in good company thinking seriously about it.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby nature » Thu Jun 19, 2014 4:08 am

jasenj1 wrote:What Petros' comment shows is that this controversy about nudity goes back a VERY long time. We are in good company thinking seriously about it.


Not only does it go back a long time, there are so many conflicting opinions even amongst Christian's, that a person needs to look seriously about what scripture actually says. And then base your decision on that.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby Ramblinman » Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:06 am

nature wrote:
jasenj1 wrote:What Petros' comment shows is that this controversy about nudity goes back a VERY long time. We are in good company thinking seriously about it.


Not only does it go back a long time, there are so many conflicting opinions even amongst Christian's, that a person needs to look seriously about what scripture actually says. And then base your decision on that.


Actually the controversy Petros mentioned was about bathing itself. To abstain from bathing was seen as a type of self-mortification, much like wearing sackcloth or pouring ashes over one's head in the Hebrew tradition.

Even the most prudish American Christians (or name your prudish country) no longer say that a filthy body is good for the soul.

Petros said the "no-bathing" movement began "very early". If you can call 500 years after Christ very early, then yes, but what about those first 500 years? The reason I mention 1st century bathing practice among Christians is that the apostles and the first and second generation of their disciples would have opposed this if they thought it was wrong. While there is controversy about the magisterium today, all Christians on the planet agree in the ability of the Apostles to speak "ex cathedra" since the power of Pentecost was still upon them. Not every thing they said was "ex cathedra", but public bathing (for many the only available form of bathing) was never condemned in scripture nor by the apostles.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby Petros » Thu Jun 19, 2014 8:50 am

Of course, it was not only bathing.

In some parts and times [I will not committ detail without researching, my memory does not hold dartes well] baptism was by immersion, nude, and involved as I understand a full-body anointing [whether seen as part of baptism or a separate act I know not, but done apparently at the same time]. The treatment of female baptized by [clothed I believe] male deacons came to be seen as a stumbling block and for a timestimulated a steep rise in the number of deaconesses. But then of course nude baptism went out of style, preservbed in a few icons.

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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby Ramblinman » Thu Jun 19, 2014 9:02 am

Petros wrote:Of course, it was not only bathing.

In some parts and times [I will not committ detail without researching, my memory does not hold dartes well] baptism was by immersion, nude, and involved as I understand a full-body anointing [whether seen as part of baptism or a separate act I know not, but done apparently at the same time]. The treatment of female baptized by [clothed I believe] male deacons came to be seen as a stumbling block and for a timestimulated a steep rise in the number of deaconesses. But then of course nude baptism went out of style, preservbed in a few icons.


Nude baptism of all (men, women, children in public) was universal in the Church and remained the practice in the Orthodox church after the Great Schism. I need to learn more about timetable for this too.
Baptism, at least in the Roman Church, changed from a effusion of nude candidate to sprinkling somewhere along the way and nudity went out with the change in method.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby nature » Thu Jun 19, 2014 4:16 pm

With all this info, I just wonder why has the Church kept quiet over the last few years. I've been reading a lot from the biblical naturist today again. Awesome info.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby jasenj1 » Fri Jun 20, 2014 5:56 am

nature wrote:With all this info, I just wonder why has the Church kept quiet over the last few years.

I think it's because people don't study history. And pastors don't teach history from the pulpit. And very rare is the Sunday school or other church class that incorporates church history.

Just 100 years ago men and boys swimming nude in public was common in the USA. Up until the 1960s boys taking swim class nude at the YMCA and in school was common. Yet in the last 30 years society has forgotten or suppressed all of that.

Social nudity is not a significant topic - to most people. A simple "Adam & Eve put on clothes, so we keep ours on" is enough teaching on the subject for them. Unfortunately, IMHO, the recent obsession with clothes and "modesty" has done some real harm. ( See here.)

- Jasen.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby Ramblinman » Fri Jun 20, 2014 10:25 am

jasenj1 wrote:
nature wrote:With all this info, I just wonder why has the Church kept quiet over the last few years.

I think it's because people don't study history. And pastors don't teach history from the pulpit. And very rare is the Sunday school or other church class that incorporates church history.

Just 100 years ago men and boys swimming nude in public was common in the USA. Up until the 1960s boys taking swim class nude at the YMCA and in school was common. Yet in the last 30 years society has forgotten or suppressed all of that.

Social nudity is not a significant topic - to most people. A simple "Adam & Eve put on clothes, so we keep ours on" is enough teaching on the subject for them. Unfortunately, IMHO, the recent obsession with clothes and "modesty" has done some real harm. ( See here.)

- Jasen.


Jasen, I am a great advocate of every Christian owning a Bible and reading it, but for those of us who have grown up in America after the end of this era of nude swims for boys and men, and without a word of guidance from pastors on this issue, misinterpretation of the nudity verses is almost unavoidable for those who read scripture.

Most Christians acquire a few Bible verses in church and pick up the rest of their values from the common wisdom (no matter how wrong). The ones who challenge Christian naturists on the issue of social nudity are few, but highly vocal in their opposition.

I agree that there seems to be a reactionary movement among conservative evangelicals stemming from the surge in bad nudity in the media; it is distressing to all of us. But the assumption that all nudity is bad leads to worse problems. It is not unlike the paranoia that developed in the McCarthy era, leading to the point where fear of being accused of being a communist.

If our struggle were merely an academic debate about the need to wear a few additional square inches of fabric at the pool (bikini vs nude), I would not find Christian naturism worth my time. But (preaching to the choir), there's a lot more to it than that. Nudity is merely the most visible aspect of the whole issue of the human body in a fallen world.

Coming from a more moderate congregation, most of my struggle is against the notion of "why bother being naked?"
In a culture so hostile to the body and simultaneously so lecherous, why on Earth would we seek to be totally naked in a social setting? The question is a fair one and I think a bit off topic from the issue of naturism and scripture itself, but it does touch on the question, "Should Christians who are naturist work to change society?" Although it can be argued that discrete visits to a nudist resort don't have much of an impact on the larger society. What about nude beaches? If they are well-attended and well-supervised, it is a shining example. Some folks worry that their image will be captured by a voyeur with a camera and they might lose a job or be expelled from church. While that is a concern, why are we so hostage to this prudish version of McCarthyism? Why are we going to churches that are so wrong-headed about the human body?

I believe that social nudity and family nudity is the best tool to teach the values that ARE contained in the Bible regarding the human body. I can understand that some Christians may disagree with me on strategy, but that is truly another topic for discussion elsewhere.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby Petros » Fri Jun 20, 2014 3:10 pm

In my readings this morning I was reminded of the practice NOT that long ago of having children bathe covered by a sheet lest their nakedness be seen by God and offend him.

It is vital that "conservatives" and "reactionaries" choose well what stage in "progress" to retain or return to.
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby natman » Fri Jun 20, 2014 4:37 pm

Petros wrote:In my readings this morning I was reminded of the practice NOT that long ago of having children bathe covered by a sheet lest their nakedness be seen by God and offend him.


I have NEVER heard of this. Do you have some documentation?
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Re: Naturism and Scripture

Postby Petros » Sat Jun 21, 2014 12:35 am

Encountered in Dream Catch < Margaret Salinger, reporting her mother's tales of life in the conv ent school; no easily linked notes on the web that I can find quickly, but a couple of similar accounts, and I have heard it said before. Also St Jerome is said to have opined women should NOT bathe in the nude, and there is a note suggesting that in some areas of Malaysia adults do not bathe nude.

Interesting that hardly anyone talks about it.
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