Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Practice of Loving

What is Loving?

In the wonderful book A General Theory of Love, Thomas Lewis writes how the practice of Loving is radically different from the state of "being in love".

Loving is limbically distinct from in love. Loving is mutuality; loving is synchronous attunement and modulation. As such, adult love depends critically upon knowing the other. In love demands only the brief acquaintance necessary to establish an emotional genre but does not demand that the book of the beloved's should be perused from preface to epilogue. Loving derives from intimacy, the prolonged and detailed surveillance of a foreign soul.

As the old expression goes "love is blind". Or perhaps, more truthfully, we are blind until we are in love. Life can blind us to the natural state of Love in our souls, and in our hearts. This brings to mind a famous quote by Marcel Proust.

Like everybody who is not in love, he thought one chose the person to be loved after endless deliberations and on the basis of particular qualities or advantages.

So why fall in Love? Why have this experience? Some would say that everything happens for a reason. In the case of Love I believe they would be correct. Being in love can fade away, but Loving does not need to. Deepak Chopra writes along these lines in The Path to Love.

Romance is a temporary state of the sacred. Relationship makes it permanent.

In this way, being in love is really just an overview, a summary, or a melody that guides us later through the practice of Loving. We all know what being in love is. It is all over movies, magazines, talk shows, etc.. What we are seeing dominate our culture today is really just this initial summary of love. Who reads the full novel?? We hear the initial melody, but skip the song. I think that it is definitely worth taking the time to hear the entire song. An excellent example of this is by listening to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star by Mozart.

If you just saw the Mozart video on YouTube, do you remember about the first 30 seconds of that from a happy childhood bedtime memory? Was that enough Love for you? Or did you want to experience the whole song??

The dominant culture tells us that "in love" is sexy, and that Loving isn't. It is now our wonderful task as Amorists (whether you are a monoamorist or a polyamorist) to make Loving sexy. Sacred relationships happen when everyday Loving is transformed into the "once in a lifetime" experience feel of being "in love". How do we "sexify" love everyday of our lives?!

There is more than one way to "sexify" one's daily love life, and I would love to hear how you sexify yours! Beautiful love stories often happen when unconditional love is made real. A fine example of this is Ram Dass's meeting with maharaj-ji (his "guru to-be"). I like how Ram Das comes to realize peace within himself when he understands that he is loved unconditionally. What a truly powerful and transformative Loving story this is!

* Above photo is of Maharaj-ji.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Naked You

Nude archer

Who is the Naked You?

How do you transform yourself? Undress yourself? Lighten your psychological load? Lighten the toxic load on the planet? Swallow the red pill? It is truly wonderful to make the transformation from an inhibited sense of self to a Naked sense of self, even if it is simply experienced in your own bedroom, as Joanna Goddard writes here.

There are many ways to lighten ourselves, transform ourselves, and awaken to the Light and Energy within us! One of the most important ways for us at this time is to lighten our toxic load on the planet. If you know deeply and are so acutely aware that life on this planet will continue and be healthy for your children, and your children's children, and so on, isn't that an incredible weight lifted? What a sense of levity you feel! Floating above the earth in Joy and Abundance at the divine sense of connection with all life! How is this achieved?

Derrick Jensen writes that to be truly naked our industrial self must first die.

The socially constructed you died.
The civilized you died.
The manufactured, fabricated,
stamped, molded you died.
The victim died.
And who is left when that you dies?
You are left.
Animal you. Naked you.
Vulnerable (and invulnerable) you.
Mortal you. Survivor you.

"You are left." What is "you"? What is the Naked You? I think that he means the naked you that will defend her own life on this planet. Who will defend the environment, the ecology, and the humanity that we all need. How do we cherish the land? Cherish ourselves? Cherish each other and other living beings? I think that we have a lot to learn, and a long way to go.

I think what Derrick makes most clear with his words is that industrial life on this planet is over. Our industrial self can and should die. Our Naked Self is waiting to be born!

Here are some Derrick Jensen quotes set to music and photos in this video about the Naked You. I look forward to meeting the Naked You!

*Photo credit David Levine

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Loving Yourself Today With Food!

Today I am Grateful for Nourishing Foods and the enriching sense of Well-being that comes from localizing Community. Fall is in the chilly air! As I rode my bike back from a morning meditation, I saw pumpkins strung along porches and doors left open for arriving guests. I thought to myself "Today I am not worried. Today I am free." I am super pleased to be writing this to share my Joy, Love and Inspiration with you!

It was on this ride I realized what I have to be Greatful for; Nourishment! (among many other things: Love, Community, Family, Friends, Shelter, and Abundance.) I think that overall it is the one Holiday that comes close to making Peace with the Earth. As I rode home, I suddenly knew that in comparison to this wonderful Thankfulness, and this great coming together of Communities, that Halloween has become in the Western world a shameful mockery of Gratitude and of Thankfulness. Instead of remembering and honoring the dead as latin American cultures do on The Day of the Dead we sacrifice our Beloved children to dead foods. How disgraceful, unloving, and un-nourishing! This single practice alone makes our Western culture look extremely silly and wasteful to outsiders!

Perhaps it would be useful, in order to be more totally Thankful today, if we begin to realize what not thankful is like. Let's use Halloween as an anti-thankful example. On Halloween, so called "Junk Food" is handed out. And isn't that a perfectly fitting description for the foods that fill children's pillow cases and plastic pumpkins each Fall? Is this is how we choose to "treat" our children? With junk, disguised as food? I've just discovered a link that claims Snickers and Candy Corn are in a tie for the most common "treat" handed out on Halloween. Let's look at what we are feeding our Children for Halloween (and over the following months where the candy still lingers).

Snickers Ingredients:milk chocolate (sugar, cocoa butter, chocolate, skimmed milk, lactose, milkfat, soy lecithin, artificial flavour), peanuts, corn syrup, sugar, skimmed milk, butter, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, lactose (a milk product), salt, egg whites and artificial flavour. (From Wikipedia)

Candy Corn Ingredients: Sugar, Corn Syrup, Confectioner’s Glaze, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Salt, Artificial Colors, (FDC Yellow 6 Lake, Red #40, Red 40 Lake, Yellow #5, Yellow #6, Blue 1 Lake, Blue #1, Yellow 5 Lake), Egg Whites, Honey Glycerin, Mineral Oil, Carnauba Wax (From candy corn website)

As you may know, as per FDA food labeling requirements, ingredients are listed in descending order. This means that the ingredient listed first is the most abundant in the chosen product. In this case Sugar is first, so Sugar is most abundant in Candy Corn and Snickers.

So what is wrong with a little sugar in our diets?

In today's over-processed, sugar-crazed society, the average person consumes 154 pounds of sugar per year! That's 53 teaspoons of sugar per day! Now let's pretend that sugar actually has some benefits, eating one-half pound per day may not seem like such a bad idea. But the truth is that refined sugar has absolutely no nutritional value whatsoever. Not only does it completely lack nutritional value, it also robs the body of enzymes, minerals and vitamins, especially B-vitamins. Symptoms of B-vitamin deficiency include: fatigue, depression, anxiety, inability to concentrate, poor memory, insomnia, rapid/irregular heart beat, swollen/inflamed tongue, dry skin around the nose and cracking around the lips. Considering the amount of sugar consumed in this country, it's no surprise so many Americans suffer from symptoms of a B-vitamin deficiency. (from The Kitchen Transition by Lori Lapinksi)

So B-Vitamin deficiency... Doesn't sound like a Treat that I would like to pass on to the upcoming generation.. or any generation!

Lori goes on to explain more on the detriments of sugar in our diets:

Eating too much sugar also creates blood sugar imbalances in the body. When blood sugar drops too low (shortly after eating a high-sugar meal or snack) the fuel supply to the body is impaired, with adverse effects on mental function, physical energy and emotional stability. Symptoms of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) can range anywhere from headaches, irritability and shaking when hungry to explosive anger, panic attacks, or crying easily for no apparent reason. Not only can sugar affect the quality of your day but it can also make you sick. Many studies have shown that sugar is very effective in weakening the immune system and is a source of fuel for feeding cancer and tumors.

Ok, so now it really hits home! At first I just didn't want children getting poor nutrition, but now I don't want them acting crazy either! That is asking a lot! Imagine- Healthy Children!

For me, the picture is clear. Celebrating Halloween by handing out industialized anti-nutritious "candy", carving silly faces in our food and letting it rot on our doorstep, on the one hand being extremely un-thankful. On the other side, eating nutritious pumpkins, and sharing the moment with one another, is a very Thankful thing to do, today or any other day!

Eat good Food today! Please, do it for the Earth, for the Moment, For You, For your Loved ones.. for Anything! Just love yourself today with some loving food!
Eat some Organic popcorn, dates, oranges, whatever tastes good to you and is a Traditional food that is Nourishing.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Workin in the Nude!

Ever think that you couldn't do a certain activity in the Nude? Well, turns out almost anything can be done comfortably in the Nude!

Check out a recent blog by Diary of a Nudist that shows people loving Nude work!

Just recently while hiking the Pacific Crest Trail in Northern Washinton, I found that the best way to keep dry and warm while it was raining was to work Naked. The above photo is of me digging a trench around our tent, to keep our tent out of a puddle-under-tent situation! The physical effort of digging the trench warmed me up, and the mist on my skin easily evaporated and/or was wiped off with a towel once I got back in the tent. Besides the practicality of this, it was a a very pleasurable sensory rich experience!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A day for Earthly Reflection

Well, hello Naked ones! It has been awhile, and I have been meaning to post for some time.. Hope that you are still around, I would love to hear all of your Naked words too!

Today is 101010, a great time to reflect on this planet earth and our role as humans. For me, this has been a long road... seeking confidence in living in "harmony" with the earth.. How does one live one's life this way?? Fall is an exciting, wonderful, and abundant time of year. It may seem awkward to reflect on the need to change.. perhaps this is more of a wintertime activity.. but since we're here, why not take some time to hear what one man has to say about playing a serious role in the future of our planet:

Check out this video series interview with Derrick Jensen.

I have found more and more that love starts with ourselves.. that the way we treat ourselves is reflected in our personal relationships, in our environment, in everything we come into contact with.. If I don't take time to care for myself, I am more likely to not take the time to care for you, or the environment.. Right?

One way that we can love ourselves and the planet is by opening up ourselves to Listening. Listen to ourselves, our planet, the land, the plants, the animals that are all around us.. Let go and feel whatever it is.. tension sadness, anger, joy...

"I would let go of all my tension with noisy, uninhibited sobs. I cried in a way that adults hardly ever cry, the heart filled with sorrow."- Catherine Millet

Perhaps it is through this process, in listening to our voice.. our true heartfelt voice that we find out life's direction.. our planet's direction.. and our local environment's direction.. If we can truly listen, and create community locally and globally, then all we have to do is keep going in that direction.. keep loving and listening and learning.. moving towards what we know must be..

"If we are facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking" -Buddhist proverb

If you must walk.. walk in the right direction.. and don't forget to take off all of your clothes, as well as your mental "clothing".. May you be Naked in all that you Do. May the soft Fall breezes bless the hair on your head, and the loving leaves of nature's garden brush along your bare backside.. whispering words of love, freedom, and divine protection..

*Sunset photo taken near Pirate's Cove, San Luis Obispo county

Monday, June 21, 2010

WNBR 2010 San Francisco!

The ride gathered at Thomas Herman Plaza from 12-1 and we all started bicycling in a big circle in the plaza just after 1 o'clock. We then rode bikes leisurely through the city, mostly through tourist dense areas, allowing for hundreds and hundreds of camera and i-phone photo ops for tourists naturally expecting this kind of thing in San Francisco! There was an extended break at City Hall around 3 o'clock or so. It was great to enjoy the shade, and many Naked bikers bought ice cream from a street vendor with a rolling cooler/cart.

In one of the above photos of City Hall you might notice that as this throng of 30 or so Naked bikers descended with their rolling flesh cloud upon City Hall, a couple was happily having their wedding photos taken on the front steps! Since city hall was near where I was staying and I was already very sun-fried I headed home early, as the enthusiastic group biked on in the Nude.

I am feeling very grateful, having met some great folks in person for the first time, including Edward and Woody. I shared many fun chants along the ride with a Nude "family" for the day. Most of the usual WNBR chants were repeated throughout the ride: "Less Gas, More Ass!!", "Burn Fat, Not Oil!!" or sometimes a Nude biker would just yell to a motorist stalled at a stoplight "Get a bike!".

I would like to send out a big "Thank You" to my loving partner Jen! Thanks for your support, watching my "Smart Sharp" business stand at Farmers Market while I was gone, and helping with my share of family farm work! I love you!

In short, I had an incredibly good time at this year's World Naked Bike Ride. I especially enjoyed biking Naked along the tourist clutterd Embarcadero as I took in the views out onto the beautiful and sunny SF bay Nakedly honking, bell ringing, and chanting the whole way! I totally relished in the opportunity to feel the wind slide gracefully along my Naked body as it twisted and turned down the super steep and slowly snaking Lombard street. San Francisco is an awesome host city for the event and showed a great turnout by bay area riders too. What great crowds who cheered us on as we rode! Thank you to all that did!!

It might seem silly or "Hallmarky", but this was, for me a truly unforgettable experience! Perhaps the delight and relishment that I feel is a bit unusual and kinky in it's mathematical simplicity. For, why did I enjoy it so much? I think I really didn't know what to expect, but I did expect something, and that something was I guess relatively small in proportion to the enormity of the actual ride itself. Wow! What a thrill to have a group of us 100 or so riders (near the start) take off down the street, and get the vibrant and encouraging cheers from hundreds upon hundereds of wild eyed iphone wielding tourists!!

Not long before we rode up to City Hall, I recall a long street with tourists lining each sidewalk snapping photos and smiling, and a double decker bus paused in the middle of the street filled with excited tourists checking us out.. I wonder, what was that tour guide saying through the PA before and AFTER we rode by? What a difference huh? What I am most stoked about is that we could light up so many people's day and give them a story to tell upon their return home to someplace nestled deep in the corn country of Iowa or tucked away in the snow fields of a far away country that I've never even heard of...

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Sex Toys in Rite Aid?

I saw this fine "mini plunger" made by "helping hand" while shopping at Rite Aid today, looking for a shower drain. This was after walking around lost in the maze of aisles selling practically every household convenience (I am not in Rite Aid very often, if at all). I am sure that Wal Mart would dwarf this store... Why are sex toys not available at Wal Mart or AMPM or Rite Aid or Safeway?? Just another example of our "sex negative" culture?

The word that comes to mind is "stigma". There is a "stigma" around this thing called sexual pleasure! From Merriam Webster a Stigma is "1- A scar left by a hot iron, brand. 2- A mark of shame or discredit, stain." I think that there needs to be a stigma around denying ourselves pleasure!! What is this martyrdom? Puritanical "wisdom"?? OK.. so it just plain don't make no sense! Obviously the word "stigma" implies that there is some healing and/or acceptance/"moving on" that needs to occur around the issue at hand. We must find a way to heal as individuals, and as a society!

The experience at Rite Aid today just makes me all the more aware of the buried sexuality in mainstream culture- as in 6 feet under buried. It's as if sexuality in the magazines, movies, etc is merely the headstone for this burial site, advertising the sweet bliss that lies just below our planted feet.

If you have not done so already, what are you waiting for! Be sure to read Sex for One by Betty Dodson, and embrace the sexual side of our human nature!! Love yourself today!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Time for Sun!

Spring is Here! If you have an indoor job like most people, you need to start making the effort to get out and get a little tan now! Don't wait until that vacation to the Bahamas in the middle of summer to be burnt to a crisp. A little sun at a time, several times a week is best.

If you have time listen in on the Naturist Living Show, they have a special episode just about vitamin D and sunshine. In the episode, they interview Dr. Holick author of The UV Advantage. Either by listening to the show or reading his book, or both, you can get a good idea as to what a safe level of sun exposure is for you. You will also learn how much your body has evolved to use the sun to create vitamin D within the body, and how much your body uses this essential vitamin!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Naked Nutrition

What do we eat and where does it come from? How does what we eat affect the lives we live? How does this eating affect the moods and behaviors we carry around with us wherever we go? For several years I have been interested in eating as healthy as possible, and from what I have found, this means eating in a way congruent with those that came before me, way before me.

Mainstream food seems to have gone largely downhill in this last century. By this I mean, the food readily available to us in the supermarkets contains much less nutrition and energy in it than it would have contained 100, 50, or even 5 years ago. In many ways we have simply convenientized ourselves out of healthy habits; such as exercising daily, eating whole foods, getting restful sleep, and working a reasonable number of hours in a day.

The pure naked truth about nutrition and our life on this planet, explained far better than I could do is presented here in a wonderful two hour lecture by Paul Chek. I'm sure this has been said before, but check him out! I would say no more if I were concerned about building him up too much, but I don't think that this is really possible. He truly has an amazing ability and a genius level insight into the problems of the world, the environment, and in particular human nutrition. He somehow ties practically everything in the world together and makes it all come back to yin and yang, to dirt and sun, and to how you eat everyday! Amazing!

Some of the books he mentions in his talk can be found here. They can also be found on Amazon or elsewhere. The books I show in the photo above are Weston Price's Book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, Nourisihing Traditions by Sally Fallon, and several copies of Wise Traditions published by the Weston Price Foundation. The first book is a textbook style writing about Weston Price's study of indigenous cultures around the world. The second book is a great cookbook of age old recipes and nourishing nutritional practices. The journals are a quarterly publication that shares information on "nutrition, farming and the healing arts". These are all excellent resources for getting your body and your life into healthy Naked shape!

A great deal more information on how to eat a traditional diet can be found through this link to the Weston Price Foundation.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

World Naked Bike Ride!

The World Naked Bike Ride in San Francisco is only 2 1/2 months away! I am definitely looking forward to my first Naked bike ride! Hope you all can find a place near you to do the same!

If you are interested in joining the World Naked Bike ride in Northern California, check out the group event on Facebook!

Here are some cool Naked biking photos to hold you over until mid June!

Naked Biking Photos 1 and 2. Thanks go out to Diary of a Nudist for posting some great Naked photos!

Wanna Check out the route?!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Orr Hot Springs- a beautiful and relaxing place...

Where will you find me on a lazy summer afternoon? Well if I have anything to say about it I will definitely be at Orr Hot Springs! This place is simply a delightful natural splendor, maintained impeccably by local staff. Wow... Go. Have fun. Need I say more?

If you haven't run out the door already to go there, here is a little bit more about my experience there. The tiny little Orr Hot Springs is located about 12 miles outside of Ukiah, CA on a smidgen of an old country road, that winds beautifully up along some oak speckled ridges. Parking is located across the creek from the resort ( a nice sound barrier, huh?). A beautiful walking path carries you alongside the small creek and up through the resort gates. Once inside you are introduced to a beautiful facility, complete with an: indoor lounge area, common kitchen, cabins, public cool pool, public sauna, steam room, warm pools, public showers, and private warm baths. All of these bathing areas are fed by local mineral springs! The water is very rich in minerals and wonderfully warm!

Photos by Eric Cinowalt and Paul Trichel. You can see more of Paul's great photography at his website.

Monday, February 8, 2010


While this film will probably never make any kind of Naturist film compilation list, it gave this Naturist a few hours of laughter sprinkled heavily with Nudity. This Nudity was pretty overtly sexualized and was used for comedic effect. But still.. how can you not like this movie?!! I can see how some people definitely would NOT like it... but at the same time.. what is not to like? The film attempts to shove all the things that people don't want to look at publicly right in their faces. Cheap immigrant labor, anal sex, blatant sexuality, swingers, religious fanatics, rednecks and anti-gay sentiment. I guess Bruno is just a way to sort of laugh at it all.. neither disregarding real efforts for positive change, nor encouraging movement in the negative "hate" direction.

This film surely relies heavily on juxtaposition.. For example, two guys handcuffed naked together running down the street just happening to run into an anti-gay march?? What an interesting use of that comedic kind of suspension of disbelief, squeezed into an otherwise "reality-tv" styled movie... This would be like having a group of World Naked Bike Riders just happening through some sort of Amish Sunday luncheon out in the farming country! THAT is a movie I would like to see!

There certainly were an endless number of comical moments in this movie.. One of my favorites has to be the Karate training session... I mean come on! This situation is so ridiculous! A homophobic Karate instructor teaches a supposedly straight guy to defend himself against the onslaught of dueling dildos?? The best quality of this movie is perhaps Sacha Baron Cohen' incredible ability not to burst out laughing. I think this is quite an incredible feat.. Really, could you keep a straight face saying "What if I came at you with two dildos?"? I certainly could not!

Then again, what would BRUNO be without the other actors in there keeping the sense of reality together? Like the Karate instructor dispatching the dildo attacker in a very straightforward no nonsense everyday sort of way. His face is so straight and his manner so calm, it's as if he is attacked everyday on the way to work by a dildo wielding gay man, who he simply kicks out of his way and steps over at the entrance to his office!! Overall, this movie should be given five stars (out of five), just for it's utter ridiculousness if nothing else!

If there is any kind of "victory" for Nudism at all out of this film, it is that there are no apologies of any kind for Nakedness. Nudity "just is". It is regarded as nothing out of the ordinary.. in this same way it is a victory for sex positive lifestyles as well.. GO BRUNO!!! On the other hand, it is just this kind of film that ends up being pure canon fodder. Nothing else. I'm sure the anit-gay and anti-nudity folks of the world out there are declaring this film a "victory" as well. It would be perfect to demonstrate the "utter tastelessness" of anything they don't like.. and use this to highlight the unprobed fears in the hearts of many I'm sure.. Sigh... oh well.. Back to the task of educating others!!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

At Once Newly Naked

Naked Words now being one year old, it seems like a good time to tell about how I got into Naturism and Nudism. (Above is a photo from the Feather River. To show how big that pool is, I am just a little dot down at the far end. A perfect dipping spot!)

About a year and a half ago, I began to search for activities and interests that were not consumer oriented. I didn't want to keep buying more stuff. At the time it seemed that one interest in my life after another was just various ways of accumulating material items. I have been into: four wheel drive trucks, knife sharpening, CB radios, rock climbing, skimboarding, music (CDS), good books, baseball, football, tennis, badminton, swimming gear, movies and more... It all amounts to plenty of stuff... for a multitude of activities I rarely take part in..

So, I started searching around the internet for something that was not consumerist.. somehow I ended up coming across Nudism and Naturism.. and started reading all I could about them.. First on the Naturist Society page, and then Wikipedia, and others. I quickly learned that there were different types of Nudists: mainly a) the authentic ones and b) the ones into "kiddie porn" or really more there for the sexualized aspects than anything else. I also learned, to my great astonishment, that I could not simply walk around Nude whenever and wherever I wanted!!! It was a great shock to me, and still is, that any law could ever be passed to prohibit or regulate being Naked. It blew my mind and still does every once in a while.

It was the middle of Winter. So I cranked up the heat, and threw off my clothes! I threw a towel down on my computer chair and surfed away learning all I could about being Naked! I came across some incredible web sites and blogs. Many of which I still read. Some of the first awesome blogs that I was lucky enough to find were Diary of a Nudist and Naked Jen. These two blogs really propelled me headlong into the world of Nudism. I was invigorated and nourished by their healthy and informative postings. Not soon after finding these blogs, I was inspired to create my own Nude blog, and Naked Words was born!

So now you know how I got into this whole Nudity thing! After my first full year I am still stoked with it and always look forward to getting Nude, because Nude activities are always incredible!