I don’t have a good feeling about the direction we are going as a human race. Few people are happy anymore. I mean, truly happy. No matter how much they have, which is more than humans have ever had in the history of humankind, people somehow feel cheated.
They see others with more and sense that it just isn’t right. That more should belong to them. Entitlement – it has nothing to do with ‘deserving’ something because of extra effort. It is what is felt to be deserved. That others have irks us to extremes. If those others have less and hope for the smallest of shares in the wealth, the entitled lose it. They want these inferior others (they have to be inferior as they are different) to disappear out of the country and take their needs with them. If the entitled could, they would build walls around their wealth and space to keep others out. There just isn’t enough for all and the entitled sure aren’t going to give up any part of what they have worked so hard to achieve.
Trump in the U.S.A, and Brexit in the U.K. are a taste of what is coming as people dig trenches, lines in the sand that are meant to keep out refugees, to keep out foreigners who would work for less pay, to keep out others who are different in other ways such as religion, colour, sexual orientation, etc. If there is a difference, then there is a belief that those being different don’t belong. Where do naturists fit into the changing dynamics of societal change that is gaining steam?
There is a fundamentalist foundation to this anger and retreat from the idea of embracing neighbours to create a borderless world that John Lennon dared to Imagine. James Hollis talks about the retreat into a society of anger in his book, Why Good People Do Bad Things:
“It is the very erosion of the old “certainties” that has given rise to fundamentalism around the world. Whether Muslim, Jewish, or Christian, fundamentalism flourishes in a context of fear and uncertainty.”
When we look closely at this fundamentalism we don’t see any evidence of tolerance of differences. If anything, the fundamentalists become the harshest and loudest in condemning anything and everything about naturism, about the naked human body. There are few rights in place, if any in most places, for those who would peacefully would like to live without clothing when weather and circumstance would make such an act sensible. Nude beaches are being shut down yet the porn industry is becoming stronger than ever. Nudist camp sites are being turned into clothed-only campsites. Within the nudist sites, security is becoming more and more of an issue with the basic rule of thumb being not to trust people, especially unattached men. With other threats looming on the horizon, people are abandoning the naturist sites in favour of what is best called free range naturism.
Not there is anything wrong with being wild and free in itself. All nudists and naturists risk at least a little, being nude “off the protected spaces.” Yet, if we abandon the naturist venues too much, they will be lost to us. The angry voices would like nothing better, even using our fear of them as proof we know of their righteousness. Yet at the same time, there is also the fear of our venues becoming more of keeping us within, locked within. I don’t have answers, only this dark cloud that hangs over telling me that it is only going to get worse. Time for me to meditate.