Turning From Outer to Inner Living

The wind is blowing again, not yet quite as hard as yesterday, but hard enough to be knocking down as many leaves as possible leaving the trees looking rather naked if you ask me, skeletal even. Again the temperature dipped to the freezing mark over night, enough to convince me to winterize the camper and park it in a quiet safe place near our home. I’m not the greatest handyman in the world, but I did manage to do the task without breaking something in the process. I wisely decided to read the instruction manual several times, discuss it with my wife and then put the manual beside me as I worked through the process, step by step. And as a reward, I am now back in the house, clothing free, and writing. Life is good.

My poetry book is now complete, including photos and formatting. All that remains is to have my astute, skilled and kind reader get back to me on the actual poems themselves. Once that task is dealt with, I will be clicking on the publish button using the Blurb service and then ordering a copy or two for myself. I will put the ordering link here for anyone interested in purchasing the book. I will also consider ePublishing the book using Smashwords for those who want to buy an e-version of the book.

Now, my attention is shifting to building an outline for my first attempt at NaNoWriMo. Naturally it looks to be a curious blend of naturism, Jungian psychology and humour (if I can make it work). That project starts on November 1st and finished on November 30th. Can I focus on it for a full month in order to write a minimum of 50,000 words? Maybe, maybe not. But, the experience will be valuable for me in terms of both discipline and developing skills.

Just as an aside, I bought two used books while in the city a few days ago – Dark Eros, by Thomas Moore; and Nature, Man and Woman, by Alan Watts. I can hardly wait for the time when I begin to delve into these two books. Besides new reading material, I am again making time for learning more Spanish in preparation for another three months in Mexico. With that said, it’s time to leave this space and get on with the other things in life.

Turning From Outer to Inner Living

Last for the season in our new-to-us camping trailer.

Last for the season in our new-to-us camping trailer.

The wind is blowing again, not yet quite as hard as yesterday, but hard enough to be knocking down as many leaves as possible leaving the trees looking rather naked if you ask me, skeletal even. Again the temperature dipped to the freezing mark over night, enough to convince me to winterize the camper and park it in a quiet safe place near our home. I’m not the greatest handyman in the world, but I did manage to do the task without breaking something in the process. I wisely decided to read the instruction manual several times, discuss it with my wife and then put the manual beside me as I worked through the process, step by step. And as a reward, I am now back in the house, clothing free, and writing. Life is good.

My poetry book is now complete, including photos and formatting. All that remains is to have my astute, skilled and kind reader get back to me on the actual poems themselves. Once that task is dealt with, I will be clicking on the publish button using the Blurb service and then ordering a copy or two for myself. I will put the ordering link here for anyone interested in purchasing the book. I will also consider ePublishing the book using Smashwords for those who want to buy an e-version of the book.

NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo

Now, my attention is shifting to building an outline for my first attempt at NaNoWriMo. Naturally it looks to be a curious blend of naturism, Jungian psychology and humour (if I can make it work). That project starts on November 1st and finished on November 30th. Can I focus on it for a full month in order to write a minimum of 50,000 words? Maybe, maybe not. But, the experience will be valuable for me in terms of both discipline and developing skills.

Just as an aside, I bought two used books while in the city a few days ago – Dark Eros, by Thomas Moore; and Nature, Man and Woman, by Alan Watts. I can hardly wait for the time when I begin to delve into these two books. Besides new reading material, I am again making time for learning more Spanish in preparation for another three months in Mexico. With that said, it’s time to leave this space and get on with the other things in life.

Naked and Vulnerable

A sunny day and very windy with cool temperatures is the gift that nature has given me this morning as I sit here in front of my laptop in my office. The rays of the sun are coming through the window warming my back as I write this post. This moment won’t last too long as the sun shifts from east to west.

In another corner of the room I have my cushion in place for my morning meditation. I guess I could best describe this room, not as an office, but as a sanctuary where I can “just sit” or write furiously when the demands of my inner voices fill me with the urge to write.

Speaking of urges to write, I have decided to attempt writing a novel during the month of November. As I was reading Ed Raby Sr.’s blog post about writing as therapy, I noticed that was going to be taking on this challenge. I then realised that I had promised myself, many years ago, to write a novel. Perhaps I am now old enough to make this attempt and have a novel worth reading. I don’t yet know what I will write about, but I am not worried about it.

My focus for the moment is to finish my Poetic Naturist book. I am having a trusted colleague read the poems with a critical eye while I struggle with gathering the photos for this collection of poetry. Why images? Well, it is just how it is with me. When it comes to depth, to soul, to the spirit I find a compulsion to bring in images in order to access the depths. It is as though images open doors that take me out of the mundane world and into an rich, fertile, inner world.

Now that I am talking about images, I want to talk about images and naturism. I want to preface my thoughts here with the caveat that I am talking about nudity and images from a point of having the images point to something deeper than the exposed skin. Like writing, this leads to a therapeutic depth as it serves as a liminal portal, a doorway through which we can break down, uncover and expose those aspects that limit out growth. The image then becomes more than simply a recording of a person’s state of undress.

Is it necessary to have images of nudity to accomplish this need for depth? Obviously I think so. And, I have to say that I have a lot of good company with this thinking. One of the images that achieves this aspect of being more than an image of nudity, is that of Adam reaching out to touch a finger of God. Rather than being a pornographic image, Michelangelo’s image was captured forever on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome, the seat of Christianity of the past and the seat of Catholicism in the present. Full frontal nudity is here, holy. It is total honesty and totally human. There is no sense of sin, of evil, of darkness.

Psychologically, this is what many experience, unconsciously, when the discover the exhilarating freedom of  naturism. And, this is an engagement in depth that connects body with soul. Healing then becomes and act of rediscovering the wholeness of being human, and the holiness of our creation – naked and vulnerable.

Naked and Vulnerable

My workplace bathed in sunshine.

My workplace bathed in sunshine.

A sunny day and very windy with cool temperatures is the gift that nature has given me this morning as I sit here in front of my laptop in my office. The rays of the sun are coming through the window warming my back as I write this post. This moment won’t last too long as the sun shifts from east to west.

In another corner of the room I have my cushion in place for my morning meditation. I guess I could best describe this room, not as an office, but as a sanctuary where I can “just sit” or write furiously when the demands of my inner voices fill me with the urge to write.

Speaking of urges to write, I have decided to attempt writing a novel during the month of November. As I was reading Ed Raby Sr.’s blog post about writing as therapy, I noticed that was going to be taking on this challenge. I then realised that I had promised myself, many years ago, to write a novel. Perhaps I am now old enough to make this attempt and have a novel worth reading. I don’t yet know what I will write about, but I am not worried about it.

My focus for the moment is to finish my Poetic Naturist book. I am having a trusted colleague read the poems with a critical eye while I struggle with gathering the photos for this collection of poetry. Why images? Well, it is just how it is with me. When it comes to depth, to soul, to the spirit I find a compulsion to bring in images in order to access the depths. It is as though images open doors that take me out of the mundane world and into an rich, fertile, inner world.

Now that I am talking about images, I want to talk about images and naturism. I want to preface my thoughts here with the caveat that I am talking about nudity and images from a point of having the images point to something deeper than the exposed skin. Like writing, this leads to a therapeutic depth as it serves as a liminal portal, a doorway through which we can break down, uncover and expose those aspects that limit out growth. The image then becomes more than simply a recording of a person’s state of undress.

Images that take us into soul, into depth.

Images that take us into soul, into depth.

Is it necessary to have images of nudity to accomplish this need for depth? Obviously I think so. And, I have to say that I have a lot of good company with this thinking. One of the images that achieves this aspect of being more than an image of nudity, is that of Adam reaching out to touch a finger of God. Rather than being a pornographic image, Michelangelo’s image was captured forever on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome, the seat of Christianity of the past and the seat of Catholicism in the present. Full frontal nudity is here, holy. It is total honesty and totally human. There is no sense of sin, of evil, of darkness.

Psychologically, this is what many experience, unconsciously, when the discover the exhilarating freedom of  naturism. And, this is an engagement in depth that connects body with soul. Healing then becomes and act of rediscovering the wholeness of being human, and the holiness of our creation – naked and vulnerable.

 

The Therapeutic Journal -or- Writing As Therapy

I have been busy with my poetry project as usual, but I did take time out to read a few other blogs by some of my favourite bloggers. Writing As Jo(e) has an interesting project called The Naked Photo Project. Jo(e) teaches writing in an American college and takes photographs. Her Naked Photo Project has its own blog site holding the photos which are about as natural and sensitive to the human spirit as can be found in a single collection. Her most recent post adds one more photo to the project, but more important than the photo is her writing which sets the context for the photo. As I read the stories of each of these photos, I can feel how each story has worked on the author as she tells it. I can also see how each participant in the project grows through interaction with the author and through involvement with the Naked Photo Project. I don’t doubt that the process is therapeutic for Jo(e) as well as her subjects. But I am sure she will tell us that in her own words in her book that will grow out of the project.

Another blog site I read contains a lot of humour and often nonsense. I know the blogger personally and that has added immeasurably to how I read his blog site, Spo Reflections. Dr. ‘Spo has just published his 3,000th blog post since the first post in 2006, a site that has had more than a million visits since that time. Dr. ‘Spo is a psychiatrist and there is no doubt in my mind that he finds writing a valuable act of therapy for himself. I know that it is good therapy for anyone simply reading the blog posts.

A third site visited today was another prolific writer, Pastor Ed Raby Sr., who writes at All Things Rabyd. Recently, Pastor Ed wrote a post on writing as therapy.  I invite you to read this post of Pastor Ed’s as well as one of his many developed themes at this site. It will be time well spent.

I brought up all three blog sites as a preface to my own writing as therapy. As a therapist, I know that there is great value, therapeutic value in journalling, in the telling of one’s story to oneself as well as to others. Like dreams, the story-telling works without conscious intention to heal, the goal of all therapeutic activities. We take it for granted that patients, clients, students and parishioners come to learn and in the process, heal from their guides, teachers, doctors, pastors and therapists. Yet, also embedded in this work is a reciprocal healing process, a needed healing for each of us is wounded whether we are conscious of that wounding or not. As a school administrator I counselled students and staff alike. As a counsellor, I also was counselled by a trusted therapist. Analysis/Therapy/Counselling is a necessity for all in the field of mental health. I often, not always, found it useful for my clients to keep therapeutic journals such as in the image above.

I take photographs and I write. These two things have likely done more for my finding and maintaining a decent level of mental health. Both photography and writing bring balance to my life. I don’t write to figure things out, I write and things straighten themselves out below my level of conscious awareness. In my opinion, it is vital to simply let the words emerge, to listen to those words without analyzing them. Analysis of one’s writing, removes the depth that is naturally embedded, flattening out and trimming off what I could best describe as soul and shadow, two vital components to being whole and healthy.

The Therapeutic Journal -or- Writing As Therapy

Writing as therapy

Writing as therapy

I have been busy with my poetry project as usual, but I did take time out to read a few other blogs by some of my favourite bloggers. Writing As Jo(e) has an interesting project called The Naked Photo Project. Jo(e) teaches writing in an American college and takes photographs. Her Naked Photo Project has its own blog site holding the photos which are about as natural and sensitive to the human spirit as can be found in a single collection. Her most recent post adds one more photo to the project, but more important than the photo is her writing which sets the context for the photo. As I read the stories of each of these photos, I can feel how each story has worked on the author as she tells it. I can also see how each participant in the project grows through interaction with the author and through involvement with the Naked Photo Project. I don’t doubt that the process is therapeutic for Jo(e) as well as her subjects. But I am sure she will tell us that in her own words in her book that will grow out of the project.

Another blog site I read contains a lot of humour and often nonsense. I know the blogger personally and that has added immeasurably to how I read his blog site, Spo Reflections. Dr. ‘Spo has just published his 3,000th blog post since the first post in 2006, a site that has had more than a million visits since that time. Dr. ‘Spo is a psychiatrist and there is no doubt in my mind that he finds writing a valuable act of therapy for himself. I know that it is good therapy for anyone simply reading the blog posts.

A third site visited today was another prolific writer, Pastor Ed Raby Sr., who writes at All Things Rabyd. Recently, Pastor Ed wrote a post on writing as therapy.  I invite you to read this post of Pastor Ed’s as well as one of his many developed themes at this site. It will be time well spent.

I brought up all three blog sites as a preface to my own writing as therapy. As a therapist, I know that there is great value, therapeutic value in journalling, in the telling of one’s story to oneself as well as to others. Like dreams, the story-telling works without conscious intention to heal, the goal of all therapeutic activities. We take it for granted that patients, clients, students and parishioners come to learn and in the process, heal from their guides, teachers, doctors, pastors and therapists. Yet, also embedded in this work is a reciprocal healing process, a needed healing for each of us is wounded whether we are conscious of that wounding or not. As a school administrator I counselled students and staff alike. As a counsellor, I also was counselled by a trusted therapist. Analysis/Therapy/Counselling is a necessity for all in the field of mental health. I often, not always, found it useful for my clients to keep therapeutic journals such as in the image above.

I take photographs and I write. These two things have likely done more for my finding and maintaining a decent level of mental health. Both photography and writing bring balance to my life. I don’t write to figure things out, I write and things straighten themselves out below my level of conscious awareness. In my opinion, it is vital to simply let the words emerge, to listen to those words without analyzing them. Analysis of one’s writing, removes the depth that is naturally embedded, flattening out and trimming off what I could best describe as soul and shadow, two vital components to being whole and healthy.

The Sharp Clarity of Autumn Sunshine

Autumn morning on the Canadian Prairies

Autumn morning on the Canadian Prairies

I took this photo just moments ago from my back deck looking out at my garden shed which is covered with Virginia Creeper that has turned a beautiful red and gold.

Yes, it is now 3 degrees Celsius

Yes, it is now 3 Celsius

It is quite cool this morning on the prairies, and yes, I am writing this while wearing nothing but my skin. The sunlight does an admirable job in giving off a lot of warmth through the windows making the house feel quite warm, warm enough to avoid having to turn on central heating. Like almost all Canadian naturists, there is a shift from outdoor nudity to indoor nudity. As I noted in the last post, one takes advantage of where and when for nudity. When it gets colder out, then the heating system has to be turned on regardless of whether wants to be clothes-free or buried under layers of clothing.

With autumn now fully entrenched on the prairies, we are all aware here that winter is breathing down our necks. For those who are able to, there is a rush to book flights and accommodations in the warm, sunny south. Canadians are called snowbirds for a reason. Like the Canada Goose, we fly south in order to keep warm. And yes, our tickets are bought and paid for as are our accommodations for three months of winter. I don’t mind indoor nude living, but I do prefer to have ample time for simply being outside with nothing between myself and the sun except for air. How do you cope with winter cold and snow as a naturist or nudist?