I am just over a third of the way through the re-write of my NaNoWriMo challenge novel which involves the removal of a few scenes that don’t fit in the global sense, the story line. I didn’t really know what that story line was really going to be when I began writing; I simply let the words come. Now that I am aware of the story that was trying to tell itself, the story is growing in the re-write phase, growing slowly.
In my last post, I talked about the flower children, or as they are better known, hippies, as representing a new collective mythology. As I wander through that myth, I am finding more and more natural experiences of nudity, of being clothing free as an expression of freedom and honesty. Being nude in group settings was about trust and respect in the group. Contrary to what media would say, it wasn’t about communal orgies. Yes, people fell in love and yes, they celebrated their love by making love – no different than experienced by others who kept their clothes on.
There wasn’t a sense of having to prove anything. Sometimes clothing was worn, sometimes clothing was discarded. The intention was to celebrate freedom, freedom of choice. Nudism groups today are too often fundamentalist, demanding and expecting themselves and others to conform – nude twenty-four/seven – in order to be considered true nudists. It becomes and either/or dialectic that isn’t much different than assault on human freedom that is practiced by all fundamentalist groups – religious, political, social, economic – an assault that leaves too many broken. Fundamentalism is the wellspring of war.
The flower children knew this and so was born a brief moment in time when all of this was rejected and replaced with an authentic and transparent way of being. “Make love, not war,” was the mantra. And, that making love wasn’t about sex. Young men and women gifted the angry responses, the soldiers, the police – with smiles, flowers and songs that celebrated a real love for life.
And this, is the thread which I found emerging in the story of one young man wandering through that time in our social history.