Questions about Naturism

Q:
We are parents of two daughters (7 and 12) and one son (10). Once we were on a quiet shore near Natanya and the children were not with us. We were naked in the open air, and swam in the sea. It was a wonderful experience. How we can convince our children to come with us and take their clothes of with us? Can it hurt them?

A:
Naturism cannot hurt children. Children are naturists by birth, until the adults teach them to be ashamed about their bodies. How to convince them? That depends upon your behavior toward them. Will it be the first time they will see you both naked? In this case try to practice it first at home. If there are no secrets at home, you can simply explain what you both felt when you were there and propose for them to join you the next time, but let them decide for themselves, to take their clothes of or not. Do not pressure them. They will follow your example. I know some places near Natanya were you can be alone, and later, if the children become used to being naked with you (that can even be after some minutes), you can take them to places where more people are like you. I have no doubts they will enjoy it.
Please report to us about the results.

Q:
Here in Israel the sun is very strong, is it healthy to be in the sun a long time when you are completely naked?

A:
No. It is not healthy to expose your body to the sun for a long time. If you do not attempt to tan all at once, but rather, gradually tan your skin, your skin will build its own protection against the UV radiation. This is the same as if you would be with bathing clothes that cover only 10% of your body and today even less. In Israel you must also take care to drink a lot of water.

Q:
I am Jewish, married, and interested in naturism, however my wife (and also my mother-in-law, of course...) tell me it is forbidden by the Torah and my wife will therefore not share my interest.
Do you have any more enlightened views on this? Have you asked rabbis and scholars about Naturism? There have to be Jewish naturists around, no?

A:
On the page "What is Naturism" on this site we show some proofs from the Bible that being nude can't be an abhorrence as is said by many religions.
But in the Torah you can also find proofs that it is forbidden to catch even a glimpse of nudity, look on the story of Noah and his son Cham (Gen. 9:20 - 26).
But the Sages from the time of the Talmud explained that Cham did not only see the nudity of his father, but played with it - had sexual contact with his father.

On the other hand in the Talmud there is also a reminiscence of a story about Nathan Denotsitsa a person who was sick because his love for a marriage women, Chana, (The full story we find in some Midrashim).

When Nathan was dying the doctors advised that only sexual intercourse with Chana could save his live.
They asked the Rabbis for permission.
The Rabbis said: "No, it is better that he will die than that he will have sexual intercourse with a marriage women".
Then the doctors proposed that Nathan will see Chana only when she is naked.
The Rabbis answered: "No, it is better that he will die than that he will see a naked marriage women".
The doctors proposed Nathan will only speak with her.
The Rabbis said "No, it is better that he will die than that he will speak with a marriage women".
The doctors finally proposed he will talk with Chana behind a curtain.
The Rabbis decided: "No, it is better that he will die than that he will talk with a marriage women even behind a curtain".
The story has much more complications, Nathan was rich, and Chana was poor and her husband was starving in jail because debts.
The end of the story is that Chana went to Nathan and proposed to do all what he want, but she said to him: "maybe you can save your live in this world, but if you will have relation with me, you will lose the next world".
The end of the story is that Nathan by these wise words of Chana overcame his instincts, did not touch Chana, recovered from his sickness, paid the debts of Chana's husband, and became a student of Rabbi Akiva.

This story actually explains that all relations even talk behind a curtain, based on love for a married women by another man than her husband are forbidden.
This story does not say that talk with such a women is forbidden in all other situations.
If this is truth, also seeing a naked marriage women without sexual intentions may be allowed.

I talked with two Charidim (ultra-orthodox Jews) who visited my sauna, one of them was some times in a sauna in Holland were women and men bath together.
He said that real Judaism must be very tolerant toward nudity.
But on the moment there is feeling of love for a married women you are acting against the ten commandments.
He stressed that this is his personal meaning.
He had much complains against the official orthodox authority and the practice of many orthodox people; too much sexual incidents take place in religious communities, by teachers with pupils, even Rabbis misused their position and did shameful acts to married women and even children, all this because the hypocrisy and taboo's toward nudity, he said.

Now some linguistics:
"gillah erwah" in the Bible is always translated as "discovering nakedness".
According to the ground meaning of the word roots this translation is right.
"gillah" means "discover", " 'erwa" means nakedness, compare the root in Arabic: "tarray" means "becoming naked", "aryan" means naked.
But the explanation of the Sages from the time of the Talmud leaves to us more freedom; "giluy arayot" means in the Talmud forbidden sexual intercourse, as they explained the verses about Noah and Cham, and also all the commandments in the Torah about forbidden sexual intercourse, where this term was used.

Naturism or nudism is free from any sexuality.

Without having the competence to be an authority, we do think, it is allowed even according the Jewish law.
We do not think that a lot of Rabbis will share this opinion.
Some of them will go on in stripping even married women in their perverse imagination, and maybe some times even in reality.

We, nudists are freed from such complexes.

I do not think I will be able to convince your wife or your mother-in-law.
It is not worth to destroy your marriage for it, if your are happy.
Maybe you can discuss with her about the subject and bring to a better understanding.
But from better understanding, until she will go with you to free beaches or to a naturist club being naked between other people, the way may be very long.

Now your last question, yes, many Jews are members of naturist societies all the world over, but I do not think they are generally religious people, at least they are happy and that is also important.

Q:
What do you feel, as a naturist, if you see a beautiful young naked women passing your way? Will you turn your head to see her longer?

A:
Do I? Definitely I do! I like to see pretty women. In this matter there are no differences between naturists and textile fans, but in contrast to clothed people, I do not have to imagine what is behind her clothing. I see her, without erotic feeling, as she is in her full glory. It is that imagination which makes the human body erotic. nude is not erotic.

Q:
We want to try naturism, but we don't know if we will be ready become naked directly, particulary my wife will linger to take her panties of, can we join a naturist club?

A:
I cannot speak in name of other organizations or groups, the INS is very tolerant and allow people to become used with the idea, much depends on the atmosphere of the group, if the atmosphere is nice and open, it will be easy to become used with social nudity - some times a few seconds, but if there are under the people those with impudent aims and the atmosphere will be influenced by them, people may have problems to take their clothes of.
It happened once that a person who joined us, asked a women who was still clothed: "Is it not very warm for you?", this question, which was of course an under statement, deteriorated the whole atmosphere in the group, and prevented a comfortable situation for real Naturism.
Superfluous to mention that this person is not a member any more.

Q:
What about sex?

A:
What do you want to know about sex? This is not the place to ask. Sex has nothing to do with Naturism.
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