Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Life is Wonderful when you're about to hike the Pacific Crest Trail!

I just have to do a blog. Life is too good! So many things just seem to be coming together in my life it is incredibly wonderful. I have been reconnecting with some old time friends, making some brand new friends, as well as deepening my relationship with my life partner. All this in itself may seem to have come about by chance, but I know it is more due to effort than chance. All the meditating I have been doing everyday has finally started paying off! I can focus on things MUCH better than I could just a few weeks ago. I used to get easily distracted and would let my attention drift during conversations, emails, tasks at work, or anything really. Recently I have been able to pull my focus back onto the thing at hand. I've been living more 'in the moment'!

Jen and I just brewed our last batch of beer at our Arcata apartment before we head off to begin the Pacific Crest Trail! We are super stoked for the adventure, and are scrambling to make last minute preparations. We have to move out as well as pack food for five months, as well as continue to get in shape to hike 20 miles a day with 30 pound packs on!

To all of you, I love you! Thank you so much for being a part of my life as a reader, friend, lover, acquiantance, stranger, or some kind of AI. I'm not dying or going anywhere, I've just had a series of amazing enlightenments, and want to say that All is Love! Life is wonderful; I thank you all for reading!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Mountain Kilt is super on Nude Hikes!

This mountain kilt is quite incredible. If I was a woman I would be wearing a skirt all the time! But I am a man, so I must wear a "mountain kilt"!
This is an awesome clothing innovation dating back to the 16th century. We think of it as Scottish but I guess it comes from Norse culture too.
It is hard to beat the free flowing feeling from wearing a kilt while hiking. It is sheer bliss. The ease of movement is divine. The access to going number one or number two is simply unsurpassed. Impromptu "quickie" sexual fantasies are now a breeze. The world is your oyster! I think that pants should go away, at least for a while, and give kilts a chance to catch up in the 21st century male' wardrobe.
The kilt is a joyful discovery for me. Sometimes the contrast between the nude world and the textile world can seem pretty black and white. This sharp contrast can create kind of a dualistic or "lose-lose" mindset. "I'm unhappy wearing clothes to fit in, but I will get arrested if I walk around naked." Hmm... This kind of thought could be pretty discouraging to a Nudist, if not completely depressing. That is why the kilt makes me so happy! It is the grey area; it is the area in between the black and white. It is a wonderful way to carry some Nudist values into our everyday textile world with a minimum of resistance from others.
If you are interested in a Carhartt sort of kilt check out UTILIKILTS. These look pretty awesome! I haven't had the cashflow to purchase one yet, but I'm thinking about getting one this year probably. They have some pretty darn funny videos on their site. They're kind of amateurish kilt mock-u-mercials. You should check them out!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Self love and the male nude

I added some nude photos here of me hiking in the local community forest. I wasn't nude the entire time, just in the sunny (warm!) spots. The rest of the time I hiked in my new mountain kilt. I'll blog more on kilts in the near future. All I've got to say for now is, get one!

I believe that the male body is beautiful, whole, wonderful, and sacred. If you've ever heard someone say "the female body is beautiful, but the male body is ugly or utilitarian" then you have some idea of where I am coming from. I think that the female body is equally beautiful and amazing. It is particularly wonderful in its non-anorexic form. I think I've definitely veered off from the opinions of the mainstream culture here quite quickly, but so be it!

What is beautiful in a nude (male or female)? Yes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. To me it can be: health, fitness, uniqueness, softness, firmness, calm, peace, power, fragility, intelligence, fierceness, vitality, oneness, joy, freedom, or simply an honest moment of deeply felt laughter. Now that you have an idea of how I see nude beauty, let me explain how I'd like to create a greater awareness of it.

In Eve Ensler' poignant and raw book/play The Vagina Monologues she creates a powerful case for female nudity. By reading the monologues in the nude, she is empowering women to look at their bodies, be aware of them, as well as stand up for them, and join together with other women to protect them. These are totally important things to be able to do, in a culture where one in three women is forced to have sex against their will (aka raped) in their lifetime. So what if you flip it 180 degrees around? What does the male part of the population need to do? Wouldn't a male awareness of the sacredness of the human body help, a lot? I don't think I have the time, ability, or desire to really tap into the male rapist phsyche, but I do want to understand male self love and body acceptance. The more we love ourselves the more empathy we can have. The more we can tap the suffering of others the better. It really starts with ourselvs.

I don't believe there is a book out there called, I am man, my body is beautiful, let me count the ways. So, fuck it... let's start to believe we are beautiful ourselves. By beauty, I am not really refering to some sort of airbrushed Miss America sort of beauty. By beauty, I really just mean love, wonder, appreciation, acceptance, and respect. These are the things that allow us to see beauty. Beauty is always there. When we open ourselves up to the idea that a naked male body is a wonderful thing, then we can see beauty there. Wouldn't that make it a great place to live? I want to live in a sacred temple, a place of worship. I want to live with respect, peace, and love. I want to be in harmony with my own skin, bones, and muscles.

Men, and women, lets celebrate our bodies! Lets go out into the sunshine and shout out our love for ourselves! Find the nearest mountain top and go look out over all you see. Imagine you are a vibrating particle of light hanging in the air, caught, paused in time. Realize that this pure energy, this delicate love, this incredible purity, this raw essence is your body. Turn any off-perceptions of your body upside down, challenge them deeply. Do I believe these things? Who told me these beliefs? Go and be Happy! Be Nude!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Reading about the New Paradigm for Loving and Conscious Relating

The nude meditations have been going well the last few weeks. I plan to continue them into the future, they really are kind of addictive, in a good, natural sort of way, not like donuts, coffee, or speeding in your car. The connection or perhaps "disconnection" has become more apparent. By this I mean the connections between "me" and "my thoughts". Each day I try to unravel the mind, make it easier for it to function. I have been doing this by creating a space or disconnect between the self that just experiences and the self that thinks or problem solves. It has been slow, but very rewarding spiritual work.

I had a great image come to mind the other day during meditation. It was a bright sunny day and I was looking at the sun dance off of a lawn of tall green grass. I imagined that the dragonflies landing on the blades of grass were my thoughts, and that the grass itself was my subconscious mind. I stayed focused on the grass swaying in the breeze, catching the sunlight. I was aware of the dragonflies as they landed (aka my thoughts), but I didn't try to hold onto them in my mind, I just let them fly away, come and go, and I kept my mind on the grass itself. It was later that I realized the soil beneath the grass was my unconscious, bringing my most deeply felt emotions to life.

I have been reading about this concept called "new paradigm relating". As defined by Deborah Anapol, it is "a philosophy of relationship which emphasizes using the relationship to consciously enhance the psychological and spiritual development of the partners. New Paradigm relating is characterized by responding authentically in the present moment, honoring individual autonomy, equality, total honesty, and self responsibility." This is as opposed to the more familiar type of relationship we all probably grew up in, or "old paradigm relating". This she defines as "a philosophy of relationship which emphasizes well defined rules, extensive agreements, ironclad conditions, and the importance of the group over the individual. Usually involves a hierarchical power structure."

New paradigm relating just has different emphases on different certain things, as opposed to other types of relating. I think that the things stressed in new paradigm are very important for personal growth. One of the things stressed is non violent communication. In other words, let communication be. Don't force it. LISTEN. For me, it has been an eye opening experience to communicate so completely freely and non obstructively, just simply relating. This is a wonderful, simple, and empowering activity- not just communicating, but letting it flow where it may.

How do we get stuck with violent communication? In other words, why is FORCE applied in our everyday conversations? What about appeals to logic, reasoning, love, and empathy? I think violent communication is definitely a learned behavior, reinforced by our culture, and thus our society. I don't think there is any real valid excuse for continuing this sort of communication style. This would completely make sense if you were thinking of an "anti-war" or peace mentality vs. a "kill em all" "anything goes" mentality. Non violent communication is for personal relationships what peace is for global relations. How often during our daily lives do we push or be pushed by others? We're all adults now and don't really think too often in terms of bullying like we did when we all played in the sandbox. But it is totally obvious. We are still there in the sandbox, everyday! It's just kind of an undercurrent in our conversations: at work, at home, and even out with friends. How do you play? Do you play nice?

To take this a step further, how much bullying, aka violence, is socially acceptable? Is a hierarchical structured relationship inherently violent? If one person's needs are not being met, or even communicated, then isn't there probably the threat of violence holding them back? I think that it is the dance of the two (or more) people in the relationship that creates this kind of setup. This does not mean it is fair to both parties, it's just that they are both agreeing to create that dance, or that relationship together. When we begin to consider such things as equality, harmony, compassion, honesty, non violence, and personal growth, it is amazing how much we can change for the better in a relatively short period of time. Even more incredible, is how long we can keep creating change, how deep we can take these concepts. There seems to be no real limit to how deep love can travel inside of us. There appears to be no limit to how strong a connection can be made between friends or partners. The only limitations exist or once existed in our minds; they are inherently false. Once we come to understand our true nature, made up of love, harmony, and peace, then the false limitations will cease to exist for us.