Today, it is sunny though a bit cool. Sitting on a deck with a hot cup of coffee with the early morning sun doing its best to breath life into one’s body is a treasured gift. With coffee gone, I returned into the house to do my usual reading and writing – it’s what I do, my raison d’être – I am a writer at heart and practice. And as usual, when conditions are right, I write in an au naturel state.
Lately I’ve been writing about the soul and its natural religion versus the religion of churches and dogma; of course approaching the topic from a Jungian psychology background. As well, I have been writing on Buddhist themes of intellect, intuition and compassion. One thing I haven’t been writing about is naturism and therapy, my book project. It seems that I have been avoiding my book for the past number of weeks. Have I given up on that project? Not at all. I have simply set it aside while summer life is filled with family, community and friends. The book isn’t something that can be approached with the odd hour here and there. With a change in the availability of time, that is about to change.
The house is empty and it appears as though I will have extensive free time for reflection and writing for at least the next five days, three of those days with no Internet to serve as distraction., three of those days when I can live, read and write naked. I will again return to Goodson’s book, Nudity, Therapy and Joy in order to dig deeper into the relationship between body, mind and psych.
I guess the time to start is right now. Paul Bindrim, the first to perform therapy while participants were nude wrote:
“Maslow conjectured that people would get used to their bodies being naked and that, in itself, would be of great value. I found out later that self-image was very much based on body-image and, if you can accept your body, then you can begin to accept yourself more and more. There was real value in that. But in my concept also was that physical nakedness could facilitate emotional nakedness and, therefore, would speed up psychotherapy.” [Goodson, p. 19]
Physical and emotional nakedness – to that I would add, spiritual nakedness and the touching of the authentic core one oneself. Now, who is Maslow, and why does it matter what he says?
Maslow was an American psychologist who is the godfather of humanistic psychology. If anything, his influence on psychological practice in North America was as great, if not greater than that of Freud. He was the authority, the American voice in the world of psychology. According to Maslow, “the way in which essential needs are fulfilled is just as important as the needs themselves. Together, these define the human experience. ” [Wikipedia]
With the blessing of Maslow, Bindrim began to experiment with using nudity in a therapy model. When the establishment (APA) decided to deal with the issue, a word from Maslow put a stop to any overt opposition. Rooted in the American psyche, somewhere, is the belief “whatever works.” Now, it is time for me to get back to my research and see what else comes up to either validate or invalidate the use of nudity in healing the human psyche and soul.