I can’t say that I am religious person, I have never been and probably never will be, but I do respect religious people. I am a naked freedom lover, and yesterday, It came to me “can religion and naturism coexist”.
Instead of walking around wondering, I put in some effort in research about the subject which includes the religions (Christianity, Islam, Jewish and Hinduism).
Christianity is a very popular religion in the western world. I am living in the western world myself, and that’s the reason why I have put most details on this religion.
I think the most frequent used argument against nudity is “God approved of people being nude, he would not have clothed Adam and Eve after they sinned, thus making it a reminder to man that we had, in fact, sinned.” If you take a look in bible you will discover that it presents nakedness as shameful and degrading.
Examples from the bible can be found here
It seems like chrisitianity doesn’t approve nakedness, but still there are Christian Naturist community. For example this quote was taken from a Christian Naturist group on TrueNudist.com – Quote – “Christian Naturists detest pornography and smut, we report Pedophilia, and uphold monogamous Christian family values that our future generations can soundly build upon.” For me it sounds like the group has most of the Christian ideals, just with a minor twist that nakedness is allowed.
It might sound like Christianity and naturism is a seldom mix, but that might not be the whole truth. Countries like Spain, Portugal and Italy are actually very liberal about nudity. These countries are also Roman Catholic and has traditional been religious countries. The religious belief isn’t as strong as it has been, but I don’t think that is the reason. It is more likely that reason is within the culture – and not in their belief.
Islam and naturism isn’t a very good fit, the reason is that there are laws against revealing body parts. The area of the body not meant to be exposed in public is called the awrah, and while referred to in the Qur’an,
- For men that is equal to covering up from the navel to knees, which means that Muslim men have to cover themselves at least from the navel down to the knees in front of other men or women
- For women that means covering up from chest to knees in front of other women and in front of men, it is the whole body except from face and hands. For some more strict Islam believers it’s not allowed to show hands and face either.
I do believe that there are some naturist among Islamists, but I don’t think the number is high.
In general, Judaism has a rather clothes-on attitude towards nudity in most social and familial situations, except when it is impractical to do so. Impractical situations can be showering, sexual intimacy or ritual purposes. How much it’s legal to show depends on the interpretation of Halakha the Jewish law.
However, there is a form of Judaism called Jewish Ascetic Nudism which embraces nude ascetic Jewish rituals.They believe that by removing clothing during observance of rituals that they are acknowledging their wholeness as a living being that has already been blessed by God and not needing anything else to survive on this earth.
In Hinduism nudity is not a part of the religion. Though there are one “sect” of hinduism which can be seen naked example Nanga sadhu .
I haven’t found much about hinduism and naturism, therefore please enlighten me about Hinduism and naturism if you know anything about the subject.
Putting it all together
It seem like that most of the major religions has a kind of negative view upon nakedness. Some religions seem to take a little light view upon nudity than other. But common for all of them is that they as default don’t embraces nudity.
Why is that then?
I don’t actually think it is the religions in itself, but the cultural inheritance which is much more visible in religions.
I think naturism can live hand in hand with religion, but not without obstacles. After all many religions has a long path to walk before it will be acceptable.