“Women’s Nipples and the US Supreme Court” – Freya’s Chambers – Equality

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day!

Disclaimer:  The topics covered in Freya’s Chambers include serious discussions of sex, sexuality and related issues.  If it isn’t your thing; you can move along, otherwise enjoy and feel free to discuss.  Given the nature of some subjects be prepared for nude images as there may be some.  I avoid genitalia as a general rule but is not always possible.

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Discussion:

While not surprising to me, the US Supreme Court decided to refuse to hear the case brought by two women from New Hampshire.  The Court basically decided not to hear the case.  The story from Reuters is below:

Reuters: US Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Topless Case

Why am I not surprised?  Because the court is conservative and there is no way that they want to go on record as having to do something very obvious to most people from a plain reading of the 14th Amendment.  If you have a rule that tells a woman she cannot do something a man can do freely, then it is sexual discrimination.

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The best thing for a conservative court with many of its members appointed by conservative presidents to do is to avoid the whole issue.  So that is what they did.  And it shows how the court, while in many ways has always been political, is even more political. The issue for most court members is legacy, not justice and it shows particularly when they don’t take cases of obvious implications for the constitution and the bill of rights. Most notably to me, the court could define 2nd amendment rights for the nation as a whole and in this case, would start to allow women to do what men have been allowed to do for years which is take off their shirt and bare the chest on hot summer days or whenever they wish. 

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This case involved two women who did a normal activity on a hot summer day and were fined 100$ for it each.  The simple question of whether a man would be fined the same way is an obvious ‘no’.  It is clear sexism that was justified by ‘traditional understandings of nudity”.  One thing is clear though that men and women can do the same activity but one of them is fined and the other is not.  That is sexism no matter how hard you try to make it something else.

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Probably the most disappointing thing is the fact this case came from one of the most libertarian states in the union – Hew Hampshire.  That’s right “Live Free or Die”.  Except, in this case, freedom doesn’t extend to women as much as men and it has been noted. Sorry, a little hypocrisy there as tradition apparently trumps freedom.

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What needs to happen is that women have full equal rights in this issue.  The issue of toplessness in public should not be made by government, nor men, but each individual woman involved.  This is really a female choice issue.  It also has an interest in the growing trans community because what constitutes male and female is getting blurry and so the best thing to do is have a uniform standard of ‘if a person for ant reason is allowed to go topless here, then all people are allowed to go topless’.

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From a sexualization point of view, as the idea of men going topless becomes more normal, sexualization of female breasts, much like legs, backsides and other aspects that have been normalized.  We will become as used to it as we have to those others. Not to say that those attracted to the female form such as my heterosexual male self won’t take note and admire, but I already do that with the rest of the female body as it is. I do find women’s breasts attractive and in some regard ‘magical’.

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Biology has kept us being attracted to each other’s physical bodies regardless of dress.  Ultimately this has led to our survival as a species.  Every picture I have used in this article is women doing some of the same activities a man can do while topless.  Only if they do it in some states – they get fined or jailed. I could have easily substituted men in all of these pictures and no one would bat an eye as this is acceptable culturally for men.  But somehow it becomes morally wrong if a woman does it. Yeah, right.

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The women of New Hampshire are now left with the arduous task of changing the laws of their home state.   A process that will take time and should be unnecessary given the plain wording of the 14th amendment: A liberty is being denied to women and given only to men. So much for equal protection under the law and the US Supreme Court is too political and thus to cowardly to correct it.

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My two cents.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Bare Skin Health” – Freya’s Chambers – Nudism

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day!

Discussion:

Disclaimer:  The topics covered in Freya’s Chambers include serious discussions of sex, sexuality and related issues.  If it isn’t your thing; you can move along, otherwise enjoy and feel free to discuss.  Given the nature of some subjects be prepared for nude images as there may be some.  I avoid genitalia as a general rule but is not always possible.  

Introduction: 

I want to make it clear hear that this article is not about research or careful study so much as opinion.  I am not a dermatologist or doctor so this is not a professional article so much as a reaction to what the commonly asserted as health benefits of nudism which not only apply to physical bodily health but psychological health.  I am providing three links that I looked at a part of my own research into this topic mostly because I am a practicing ‘at home’ nudist when no one is around.  I am simply going to take the common top seven things people say are benefits of being nudists from a health standpoint and speak to my own experience.

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Vitamin D Production:

This is probably more true for those who practice their nudism outdoors. I don’t so this is probably not something I would notice.  The interesting thing as someone who suffers fro minor depression I would probably find this beneficial.  The warning is of course too much a good thing as nude sunbathers can produce too much vitamin D.  For myself I guess I would like to try this at some point which would mean more social nudism which I am not sure I would announce publically.

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Healthy Skin:

This isn’t about the sun so much as what being clothed all the time does to our skin.  The main thing is that our skin has evolved to breathe and when it can’t it develops issues.  most notably the build-up of toxins in the body that we use our breathing skin to get rid of.  Not to mention the irritation that clothing causes to the skin as anyone can attest to in areas we keep covered all the time. You’re probably needing to scratch it because your clothing has irritated it.

I can speak for myself in this regard since practicing the naked at home thing, the areas of my body that used to have rashes or skin irritation have decreased significantly.  My psoriasis has diminished and I am not scratching as much.

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Blood Circulation:

This is also called the’ no red marks’ and probably affects women more than men with all their elastic clothing items, particularly bras.  For men, the main area for this is the waistline.  The point is that some blood flow goes through the skin and when this is cut off it can have a negative effect on blood circulation in certain areas.  This why women are encouraged when they get home to lose the bra.  Nudists would probably just say lose the clothes altogether.

For me, I have no read marks about circulation around my waist anymore and probably as a side benefit, my midsection has evened out a bit.  I still have some weight to lose but it isn’t as obvious because my midsection is not trapped upward by mt waistline of my clothes and belt all the time.

Accepting their own bodies as they are is especially beneficial for women and men who today are under constant pressure to... Body Acceptance:

There have been a few actual thoughts on this issue because psychologically speaking poor body image can be a part of “cover-up that part of your body because it is wrong to show it”. The reason is usually ‘sin’ or societal pressure. It has been said people who grow up nudist or people who have been doing it a while develop a much better body image of themselves as they can see what is actually normal, not based on models.  The genitals are not ‘dirty’ to a nudist or naturist, but rather normal parts of the body that have their function. People can be seen in all stages of life and show the body actually changes and it allows one to have a more realistic view of themselves.

I now reject the idea of the naked body being anything more than a naked body.  I have yet to experience social nudity.  I can, however, say that being naked more often and seeing myself in the mirrors more often that way has allowed me more to focus on where my body look unhealthy as a sign to work on my health rather than how my body looks.

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Self-Esteem:

One of the effects of losing low body image is a boost in self-esteem.  When you realize that people quite literally come on all shapes, sizes, and colors, you begin to realize both your uniqueness and quite frankly your body’s looks matter less as far as impressing people and you focus more on your actions being reasonable and kind. Far more important than how you look.

This whole at-home nudist experience has also made me realize actions are more important than looks.  Looks can be lost changed to be completely different.  What matters I health and how you treat others.  I know being nude while I meditate in the morning has been a revelation of sorts as far as what I really am when you strip everything away including my clothing and you know what?  I am not a bad person just one that struggles with a lot of things. Nudity taught me vulnerability is OK and brings enlightenment.

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Lower Risk of Infection:

The skin actually processes parts of the defense against infection and clothing actually hinders this process because it interferes with the skin’s ability to sweat to remove toxins and thus process infection. The best way to maximize this process is to not have any of your skin covered with clothes, makeup or anything else.  I have actually had several nudists tell me that they have never had any skin infections or fungus as well. Nor had they ever seen any long term nudist with them. Beginners yes, old hands no.

I don’t know if I can say I observe that I am healthier and suffer from fewer virus effects or anything like that.  I do know that sleeping nude which I have done since I was a kid makes me feel better. I also have to say colds and such don’t last long with me and part of that is even when I am sick, I dump clothing from time to time.

Healthy Nerves and Brain Activity:

Our skin is loaded with nerve endings and clothing shields us from feeling much of them.  Pleasure, pain, wetness, dryness, all kinds of varied experiences are available in the senes of touch and our brain receives all of that as additional information it process and improves working memory in one study of barefoot versus shoes alone.  Image what this would do with the whole body.  Awareness is improved as people are much more aware when they are naked than clothes.  Part of this might be the cultural issue of nudity, but one might theorize that this harkens back to survival instincts when our whole race was naked apes.

I know I am much more aware of my surroundings even while at home in the buff.  I am far more sensitive to changes that affect my sense of touch the most and have discovered certain feelings of touch, particularly involving the movement of air and temperature, which are much more apparent to me. I know my meditation is much more effective when I am naked. The vulnerability of body and mind leads to a greater understanding of both.  I would say it goes a bit toward fighting my depression as well.  My nerve endings across my body are stimulated and that helps me feel better.

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Conclusion:

If anything my experience with nudism at home has opened my mind up for mote possible discovery of its benefits.  I wanted simply to highlight the benefits to my mind and body at this time. I am of course understandably ready to explore more of this area of my life more and see the one thing I have yet to experience, the benefits of social nudity.

Oh, one more thing. I did indeed write this post in the buff.  I find writing naked at times opens up my senses a little more and makes it a little more fo a pleasant experience.

My two cents.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

Links:

https://www.today.com/health/health-benefits-being-naked-how-stripping-down-good-you-t44911

https://www.indiatimes.com/health/healthyliving/top-7-health-benefits-of-being-naked-236343.html#7

https://www.medicaldaily.com/3-benefits-getting-naked-public-taking-your-clothes-boosts-happiness-body-409623

“Qualities of Spiritual Nudity” – Freya’s Chambers – Nudism

 

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day

Disclaimer:  The topics covered in Freya’s Chambers include serious discussions of sex, sexuality and related issues.  If it isn’t your thing; you can move along, otherwise enjoy and feel free to discuss.  Given this week’s topic be prepared for nude images of people engaged in spiritual and other activities.  I avoid genitalia as a general rule but is not always possible.  

On May 17th, 2013 I started a series on my old blog All Things Rabyd called Naked Before God with the post; The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness. Back then I was still a devout Christian that was struggling with the simple fact that while Christianity basically had strongly connected nudity. sex and sexuality: the Bible had not.  If anything the most positive time in humanity’s existence in the story of the Bible is when Adam and Eve are in the Garden – naked and unashamed.

That series was about the spiritual side of being naked before God and how nudism could be considered a Christian spiritual discipline or at least a metaphor of how one could picture oneself before God and develop a sense of enlightenment about that relationship. That was over six years ago and a lot has changed but the main principles of spiritual nudity I think are still solid and deserve a second look.

I listed six positive spiritual qualities that nudity possesses: 1)  Vulnerability, 2) Openness, 3) Intimacy, 4) Genuineness, 5) Wholeness and 6) Equality.  I would say that all of these are still valid but need to be rethought without all the ‘how do I draw the line and avoid sin?” question. For me, this question no longer even exists so I want to see how things change from what I felt and thought then to what I feel and think now.

What follows will be excerpts from that old post with commentary and changes to reflect new attitudes:

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Vulnerability: 

“While it could be argued that vulnerability is a weakness and at times it is, there is a positive side to it.  In the Garden of Eden we see this in Adam and Eve as they are completely vulnerable to God’s presence, each other and the world around them.  Because of this, they have to develop interdependency with each other and God.  In all person to person relationships, vulnerability is the key to opening up intimacy and ultimately love.  To love someone, you must make yourself vulnerable to them and take risks that they will take advantage of this vulnerability, but when vulnerability is rewarded with returned vulnerability from the other person intimacy and love grows”. – The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness – May 17, 2013

I suppose the easiest way to edit this would be to remove all the lines about the garden of Eden and leave the rest because I think it still is a positive quality at times. I think one could experience the vulnerability to other people and the world around them and just drop the divine parts unless that is part of your spiritual goal of being naked.  I know that for myself this is a longing of my heart but I have experienced vulnerability being naked with my wife. There is something about that that opens the door to intimacy.

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Openness:

‘It is really hard to be closed off to people when you are naked.  …  Reading the testimonies of practicing nudists, particularly people who are sharing their first time is interesting in this spiritual aspect of nudity.  Even naked, they try to cover themselves up and present themselves in ways where their perceived ‘bad features’ are less noticeable.  In the end, they give this up and just allow themselves to be themselves…. –  The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness – May 17, 2013

As you can imagine this one is pretty edited down and much simpler without the God of the Bible involved.  It suddenly switches the spiritual focus from the divine to humanity and being open to our fellow human beings. This a shift that actually gives this author a cause for pause, because the question becomes is openness truly possible without being naked in front of someone else?  I can do this with my wife but that is it, so the spiritual aspect of openness is left to that relationship. This is simply a spiritual quality that you are either open to others around you or if you are more spiritually minded – the universe. This brings up a limitation that depends on one’s willingness to be naked in front of others.

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Intimacy:

Clothing prevents intimacy and in our world, this is often by design.  I am not going to say this is bad in certain contexts. Clothing is a barrier that is used to prevent people from knowing things about you.  Intimacy ultimately results from people discarding barriers and defenses.  In personal relationships, you don’t necessarily have to shed your physical clothes to be close to someone but you do have to let your guards down and let people know things about yourself that are sometimes uncomfortable and awkward.  In a real way, intimacy is achieved when you allow others to see that you too are human and you also allow them to show their humanness to you without judging them in return.  – The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness – May 17, 2013

I would still say that clothing is a barrier to intimacy in certain contexts.  Sometimes this is about security but also it can be about insecurity.  We all guard ourselves and cover-up both literally and figuratively.  Intimacy is just not possible without the shedding of all the barriers and one of them can be clothing. Learning to drop barriers and not judge when they do the same are the two key factors in building intimacy.

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Genuineness:

‘Hard to be false and deceptive about anything when you’re naked.  Everybody sees the truth about what you are.  This is particularly true with yourself.’ – The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness – May 17, 2013

I guess this still applies to spiritual things as well but I find that this is accomplished far more by looking into your own eyes. The principle is still true that when anyone is naked they are who they genuinely are. In my own life, this has become reflected in my morning routine of getting up and meditating in the nude which means I start with who I genuinely am and work the rest of the day from that point.  Being honest with myself looking in a mirror has been both a great motivator for health and fitness.  In any case, when naked every flaw, scar and what does not measure up to normal society is visible.  What can be changed for the better is obvious but also that which one cannot do anything about should be accepted.  Often what we think are flaws are simply things that make us unique.  This can be particularly obvious when standing in front of a mirror naked and honestly assessing ourselves.

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Wholeness: 

‘It is very difficult to see yourself compartmentalized when you are naked.  You actually see everything that you really are.  Clothing is used to define ourselves but in very limited senses.  We dress in work clothes to define our work.  We dress in athletic clothes to go work out.  We dress in casual clothes to relax.  We dress in sexy clothes to be romantic and make love.  We dress in formal clothes to impress people with who we are.  In a very real way, clothing is used to compartmentalize our life.  When you are naked all that is gone and the reality of ALL that you truly are is there: body, soul, and spirit in one package and there is no compartmentalization at all.  We simply and truly are what we are.’ – The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness – May 17, 2013

I would still stand behind the above statement.  Clothing seems to be about changing roles and gives only one facet of who we are at a time.  Take that away and you are what you are completely.  You are whole and not compartmentalized in that state.

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Equality:

‘It is very difficult to see yourself as better or worse than someone when you’re naked.  Want to make everyone socially, economically and culturally equal? Take off their clothes.  The housewife, businesswoman, prostitute, and debutant suddenly just become women when you strip them of clothes, makeup and jewelry and make them stand in a lineup.  Without their clothes, you can only define them by their bodies, personality, and actions and none of that necessarily reveals economic, social or cultural status.  Nakedness forces us to realize that we all came into this world naked and we all will leave it naked.  That is the great equalizer.’ – The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness – May 17, 2013

I still stand by what I said to here and I don’t want to give the impression that I am singling out women because the same is true for men and perhaps a little more visible. To most women, a man in a suit with an expensive watch is going to get a lot more attention if he is single than the guy in a t-shirt and jeans. Take their clothes off and then the factors of attraction change radically. The equality of removing fashion from the equation I think could be and perhaps has been scientifically demonstrated.

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A Word of Warning:

Now, this all said, there is a reality of the world we live in that cannot seem to grasp the concept that nudity doesn’t necessarily mean a person is being amorous or an expression of sexuality.  We live in a world where culture can be very sanctimonious and self-righteous and those that practice spiritual nudism are well-advised to take that into consideration. For myself, I practice privately and when alone. The whole goal for me is not to have people see me. Forcing your nudity on others might not be wise.  Fighting for equal treatment like the topfreedom movement does is one thing.  Shoving your nudity in the face of people you know would be offended is another.   The issue is to make these experiences, if they have a spiritual side to them, positive and not negative.

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Issues:

I think most of the issues involving spiritual nudity and if you want this as part of your life both practically and spiritually are solved with using reason and wisdom.  This is definitely one of those needs or wants that you should listen to the ravens first before letting the wolves be feed.  There are definitely spiritual and personal benefits and perhaps even social ones. The issue is ‘indecent exposure’ is a real legal charge and there are simply safety measures that you can and should engage.  I think privacy and perhaps going to a place where nudity is known to be accepted are probably the best options.

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Personal Thoughts:

I am agnostic about most things.  I lean toward thinking deism might be an option but at the same time I have no active belief in anything divine, so on a practical level, I am an atheist.  I believe in spirituality as practicing meditation to calm my mind and focus my day.  I believe in the power of symbols to help conceptualize things such as virtue and principles. If spirituality is about virtue and relationships then I guess in that sense I am very spiritual.  My following of Asatru is more about the virtues and recovering the lost pagan heritage of my ancestors.

Nudism has a lot more to due with me just being truly who I am.  Being a whole person who accepts who they genuinely are without all the trappings. It’s about being honest with myself about what I can improve and what is simply what makes me unique.

The other aspects of nudism from a spiritual point of view are incomplete for me.  They are high in these regards when it comes to my wife, but other aspects of them are incomplete because of my lack of any kind of experience of communal nudity. Well, other than the locker room when I was an athlete. I don’t know if this would be so revelatory as to change my views on spirituality or not, but until I experience it I will never know. In the meantime, I stick with what I know and can experience.  One of the things I know is that nudity has other qualities besides the physical and those can be very positive.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Werewolf” – Rogue Wizard: The Fire of Fury – Part 14

Happy Thor’s Day

Rogue Wizard’s Journal September 4th, 2019

A lot has happened this last week, but the events of today prompt me to turn to my journal here for encapsulating the big picture a little better. In summary form, we were attacked today by a werewolf.  Both Amber and I were bitten in the struggle.  No biggie for me as I am immune due to Mrs. W’s magic from a long time ago.  I have antibodies of a magical kind against lycanthropy.

Amber is a different story. I am a little distraught as Amber is starting to be someone who is important to me and some I am starting to love.  The bite for her could end up being full-blown lycanthropy.  If that happens our already complicated situation will get even more complicated.

After the skinny dipping discussion, which I relayed the last time, our lives had settled into a routine. This last week we only broke that to head into town again together.  We stocked up on food again, this time taking all three of our empty backpacks and each of us ended up carrying a couple bags in each hand.  This time we were seen by a couple more people which made me a little nervous.  I mean how many magical types do you think would be attracted to the relative seclusion of the wilderness of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan?  We got home and put everything away.

If one wonders where we get the resources and money, remember Lunette’s family is an old one and that both Amber and I have access to magical means.  I mean technically, Lunette could make blank pieces of paper look like money, but it is really not necessary. In my case, House Venus gave me a lot of money and set up a very secure and secret account.  It’s not the money for us, it is accessing it without the wrong people noticing.

After that, we settled into a very domestic routine.  I am up before the girls so I make breakfast after doing a little meditation, stretching and writing. The smell of food brings them to life and then we spend the morning each doing our own thing. I study, Lunette does some alchemy and Amber does a lot of practicing with the fireplace as far as fine-tuning her fire skills. Lunch is made by Lunette and then we begin the afternoon session of doing things together like reading a book together, playing games (we have Uno, Payday and Monopoly plus a chess, checkers, and backgammon set)  or talking. Amber fixes supper at some point as she is the best cook among us.  Then we begin the evening ritual of heading to the sauna and taking a bath, then doing a little skinny dipping. At the end of the day, we are on the couch in front of the fireplace.

This last week has had one noticeable change.  Before Amber and I would often wear t-shirts and underwear as a gesture of modesty toward each other.  Lunette, of course, being pixie had no problem being her nudist self right from the beginning. But now that things are out in the open, nudism for all of us seems more the order of the day from start to finish.  There have been some weather issues where this has been discarded briefly, but for the most part, we eat, work, play, bathe and relax in the buff now.

My relationship with Amber, as mentioned before had gone up a bit in the realm of romance and love. A couple nights ago when skinny dipping I was watching her and then as we were getting ready to walking back, I gave my traditional kiss to Lunette and then without thinking I kissed Amber with the same intensity.  She smiled afterward and then kissed me back again. I have to say walking naked in the woods with your arm around the waist of two women is a wonderful experience.

I haven’t had sex with her yet, but I don’t think that is her being resistant – it is me still coming to terms with this whole relationship situation.  Of course, tonight’s events have changed things significantly for the worse.

Tonight the ritual was interrupted during the skinny dipping stage by a savage growl.  For my part, my shield went up around all three of us but it was a little late and the werewolf got inside. His jaws clamped around my right arm so my flame didn’t get a chance. She was fast.  Yes, the werewolf was a she, I got a good look at her and it only takes basic anatomy to figure it out.  I dropped my shield and using my left hand I used a burning hands on the werewolf and it howled falling back. I fell back into the water and was disoriented.

Amber at this point was full-on fire girl and the werewolf snapped at the flames but then launched itself at Amber and got its jaws on her shoulder and slashed her backward with its claws. Amber fell in heap near the shore.  At this point, Lunette saved the day doing her shrink down and energy pinball thing. She was hitting the werewolf so fast and continuously it finally turned tail and ran. We were not the easy prey it was expecting.  By this time I was back in the game and sent a fireball after it when it struck the howl that filled the forest was defining and then the werewolf collapsed burning.  It was dead in seconds, and then I turned my attention to Amber.

She had slash marks across her belly that looked nasty but hadn’t penetrated her insides. The real danger was the bite mark on her shoulder. Lycanthropy is transmitted this way.  She was also unconscious and wasn’t responding to our attempts to wake her. We picked her up and quickly headed to the house. Lunette and I bandaged her wounds and got her into bed.  Eventually, she came back and smiled at both of us.  She said all the wounds hurt, of course, but no bones seemed broken which was a good thing.  We ordered her to get some rest.

Lunette and I know the stakes here.  We have been here before but Mrs. W died a couple years ago and her cure of lycanthropy was lost with her.  Lunette and I also know werewolves run in packs and are not going to take kindly to one of their own being killed. Without intending to we might have angered a whole pack of werewolves and that is not good. Amber right now is sleeping comfortably, but if she starts having night terrors and sweating a lot and is feverish, those are the first signs of lycanthropy. Lunette I can tell is very worried and I am too.

Right now all we can do is watch Amber and stay vigilant.

Writer’s Notes:

I made the remark about this series that it needs to end soon.  Soon in writer terms, and writing one post a week, means it will probably be late November or early December.

From a social point of view, my views on nudism even as a Christina have always been positive even though at the time I was not a practitioner.  Leaving Christianity and faith in God have kind of changed all that in some ways. I have a very open-minded view these days to nudity being simply nudity and not sinful or evil. I also have become a very private practitioner when I am home alone. I find it relaxing.

As for the developing relationship between Edward, Lunette, and Amber. I can’t really see a problem with it as sin and evil in relationships don’t really exist anymore for me. I think if people can love one another, use some reasonable precautions, avoid jealousy and figure out a way to live in such polyamory style relationships, that is great and it is their business, not mine. Whether it would be something for me is I suppose a question, but a lot would have to change for me right now for it to even be a question that affects my real life. Theoretically, I would be open to it.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“A Fireplace, A Sauna, and A Skinnydip” – Rogue Wizard: The Fire of Fury – Part 13

Happy Thor’s Day

Rogue Wizard’s Journal August 27th, 2019

It’s been a week of hiding out and I think we are all going a little stir crazy. It’s late summer so we don’t have to deal with cabin fever at least.  Yet. The three of us put on more passible civilian clothes to go to town.  Amber in jean shorts and a tank top is something to see.  Unusual to not see her in that red dress.  The town trip was uneventful as the only person who actually saw us was the keeper of the small grocery store.  We bought some fresh milk and meat and some other stuff. I dropped off a magical letter in the post office.  It would only reach my daughter if I died.  Until then it was pretty much unnoticeable.

The cabin looks ordinary enough but Lunette informed me that it had some magical features.  The lights were candles and oil lamps that went on and off with the wave of a hand near them.  The fireplace required no wood but in true fairy-fashion burned magic. It might be late summer but the cabin is shielded buy tall think trees and this is the Upper Penisula or what we Michiganders call ‘true up-north’.  It was starting to get cold at night. So the fireplace was a welcome addition in the evening as the three of us would gather on the couch and talk and watch the flames.

The icebox was also magical.  There was no electric line to the place so it all was magic.  The consequence was no internet or television.  My phone sat inert and its battery quite dead at the bottom of my pack now. Better that way, no way to trace me using it.

The same was true for the sauna by the lake as it was powered by magical rocks that you threw water on to get steam, which did have to be dipped from the lake in a bucket.  There was one of those metal portable tubs hanging from the wall that we had been taking turns in getting a bath.  Well, the girls have as I can’t really fit in it, so I fill it and then sponge bath myself standing in it (with Lunette helping scrub my back) and then pour the bucket of water over my head to rinse off.  Up until three days ago, the pattern was me and Lunette going down and helping each other bathe and sauna together. Then I come up to the cabin and Amber goes down and Lunette helps her. They usually come back together, often after an hour or so.

Three nights ago it was however particularly hot for a lot of reasons.  One was the night temperature didn’t drop much and it was still late summer heat even at night.  So the whole sauna bath thing was even hotter and I was literally sweating bullet-sized drops.  Lunette being a pixie is less affected by changes in temperature but even she was feeling it I could tell.

“Let’s cool off in the lake. Skinnydip time.”

It kind of brought back memories at my uncle’s cabin when all us cousins would get in the sauna and then do skinny dip time to cool off. We were all little kids so the whole girl boy thing hadn’t really dawned on us yet.

So I saw her get up and followed her perfect naked backside out into the lake and jumped out into it with her.  Soon we were waist-deep. The lake wasn’t dirty at all, in fact, I remarked how clear it was to Lunette and she said her family owned the whole thing.  They called it Mysterious Clear Lake.  But in truth, you will not see it on the map.  Her family had used their abilities of illusion and suggestion to basically make it disappear.  So you could see the sand even in deep water below you and when it was calm it was like a mirror. Tonight the moon was shinning out on it and it was wonderful.  I took Lunette in my arms after splashing each other for a bit.  I kissed her.  After a few seconds though we were interrupted.  It was Amber clearing her throat.

“You two mind if I join you?”

Before I could speak, Lunette said no we didn’t.

“Oh, thanks.  It’s pretty hot in the cabin.”

I was about to speak when Lunette pulled me close and whispered in my ear.

“It’s OK.  Were all adults here and I would like to know where she stands with you. Her being naked means she doesn’t have anything up her sleeve.  Gods Ed, I am still a pixie about this, I don’t own your sexuality.”

I nodded, but my eyes had not left Amber.  She kicked offer sandals and pulled her tank top up over her head.  She undid her bra and dropped it into a pile with her shirt and sandals.  She then unbuttoned her shorts and in one motion dropped them and her panties down to her ankles and then stepped out.  Looking at the front of her, I now knew she was truly a redhead.

‘There, fully disrobed, well except for my tattoo.”

I didn’t have to ask as she turned around and showed us.  Well me, because Lunette had probably seen it before.  It was a tramp stamp but it was flames of red, orange and yellow all mixed beautifully together.  The flames actually moved a bit like they were real.

“Is it magical?”, I asked.

“Oh, yes.  It augments my flame powers.”

Then bold a brass she strode down into the water up to her waist as well.

” I got it from an alchemist tattoo artist who specializes in that sort of thing.”

“Is that common.  I have been thinking about that as well.”

“Yes.  There are quite a few now that tattoos are less taboo with mundanes.  It has the advantage of being a talisman that can’t be removed.  You are pretty powerful already. I am not sure what a tattoo augment would do to your powers.”

I caught myself staring at Amber and then turned to Lunette who was smiling a wry smile.  She leaned over again and whispered.

“You know I think you are part nymph yourself. You need to focus and find out where her loyalties lie.  She is no longer your bodyguard now, so why is she with us still?”

I nodded.

“You know Amber, you don’t have to stay with me anymore.  You are not under orders to guard me anymore?”

“I know.  I could just join the underground and fight, but I feel in a way my place is still with you.  You have a tendency to draw trouble and end up in awkward and tense situations.”

“Yeah, like skinny dipping with two beautiful women.”

This time both women laughed.

I sighed and looked back and forth between the two of them they were both alternating between looking at me and each other.  Then it hit me.

“You girls are up to something. I have been set up haven’t I?”

“I told you, Amber.  He is pretty quick on the uptake when it is staring right at him.”

Amber shrugged then spoke.

“Ed, I have been your bodyguard now for some time.  I have come to care about you in that time like no one else except maybe Lunette.  Things have changed, you are right but something has been building for a while now inside me toward the both of you.  I can only describe it as affection, maybe the beginnings of love. I know my place is with both of you.”

“Ok, this is truly awkward and tense.  Are you saying you love both of us?”, I asked.

“Yes.  I have already expressed this to Lunette.  As a Pixie, I knew she would understand but we both worried about you.”

“Yeah, how you would react, Edward.  I know you just finished mourning your wife nad our relationship is still new.  You have a hard time with this heart stuff, I know. But Amber is still with us because she loves us.  No other reason than she is in love with both of us and doesn’t know any way to express it other than protect us.”

I sighed, “Well, leave it to the women in my life to complicate things. I don’t even know what to think right now. I really am a little more fae in my understandings of these issues now, but it is still all very new to me.”

Lunette spoke, “Edward, we thought about that too.  We don’t want you to rush things.  I know you wouldn’t have that type of relationship or sex with any woman you didn’t have some feeling of love for and my guess is that; true to you; the relationship between you and her has, up until now, been a professional one. She and I want that to change.”

“You both do?”

Lunette sighed, “Yes.  We have been talking.  Edward when you got back with me you said you understood what I was and what that might entail in our relationship.  I am a fae and sexual fidelity is not in the cards and you said that was OK.  That it didn’t affect our loyalty to each other because you knew how I am. Well, you should know that I find it as easy to cuddle up to a girl as a boy. I’m bisexual. Amber and I have…”

“Been getting cuddly.  I see. Ok. I am good with that.  I said I would be and so there it is.  But I am not sure about me and Amber.”

“We know Edward.  That’s why Amber and I felt you should be told this way and then gradually be brought into it. For starters, we want to stop the separate bathing times and bathe and sauna together.  Skinnydip too. It would just be good if we can dress, undress and be naked in each other’s presence without inhibition.  The cabin is just too small for any real privacy anyway. It will lead to more conversation and emotional intimacy if nothing else. There is also a practical concern.”

“Yeah, I know.  When we bathe and sauna separately the one person alone is vulnerable.  We should try to be together as much as possible. Ok. I will go along with this.  I guess we will see how it goes.”

For the last three days, we have been doing the fireplace, sauna and skinnydipping together.  Amber is a redhead and fire mage, but definitely, not a hothead and her passion I can feel is that quiet kind.  I can see her and Lunette sleeping right now from the table where I am writing this journal out by hand. I slept alone last night and let them have a night together. They are both beautiful women both outside and in. While I am still not completely sure about this, I am willing to stay open-minded. After all, life may be very short for us and we need to enjoy as much as we can while it lasts.

Author’s Notes: 

I suppose I have to say that any similarities to the characters and events in this story are purely coincidental with the exception of yours truly. I have to say that because for some reason during The Hedge Wizard of Redburg some people actually thought I was relaying all true stories.  Most of the time I was not.   

When I write fiction of any type I like to push social mores. Hell. I like to slap them in the face, knock them on their ass, and then kick them when their down. The context of this story is that we have a male wizard, a female wizard, and a female pixie.  The two mages already push the social boundaries of this imaginary world by being mages.  A little nudism and sex outside the lines are not going to phase them.  Especially since I have established in past canon (now deleted) that nudity and sometimes sex is necessary for some magic to even work or take place.

Lunette is even further off the chain when it regards sexuality and nudity.  As a fae, she is immune to disease including STDs.  In addition, she cannot get pregnant except with another fae and only if she wishes it. I ask you what kind of social mores about sex would you expect if this was the case in fae society?  None – pretty much other than perhaps incest being taboo, maybe not even that given the fae are also not subject to genetic disease either. The faerie spends more time naked than clothed when among their own kind as well. Needless to say, each faerie and pixie has probably seen a lions share of boobs, asses, and penises regardless of their own sex. Nudity does not phase them. 

In this story, Edward is hunted, a widower and pretty much looks at sex and nudity like a fae, with reasonable precautions relating to human beings.  He can get another female human pregnant without protection and STDs are real things.  But not with Lunette and Amber has a few magical tricks up her sleeve (when she is wearing clothes) regarding her own feminine issues. Edward is very well aware at this time every day could be his last so yeah, he is looking for any bright spot in that situation.    

I am simply extrapolating what would happen in this context given all the above. There is no reality here and I am not relating any real event that happened in my life at all. In real life, I am married and have been (since my wife and I’s reconciliation) faithful to her.  I want that understood before the gossip hounds go off relating this story to everyone.

Yes, I know from my stats on both my Facebook page and here that traffic indicates some people from my former congregation probably still check me out. Oddly enough, I never lost a follower on my author Facebook page last year, but I did lose a lot of facebook friends on my personal page.  Some of you are waiting to run off and tell my wife some story so you can be ‘right’ about me and warn her what an awful person I am.  I am going to say this with all the love in my heart I can muster for you – Go fuck yourself.   

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“The Topfreedom Movement” – Freya’s Chambers – Equality

 

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day

Disclaimer:  The topics covered in Freya’s Chambers include serious discussions of sex, sexuality and related issues.  If it isn’t your thing; you can move along, otherwise enjoy and feel free to discuss.  Given this week’s topic be prepared for images of topless females. 

Introduction:

I have to say that since the first time I wrote on the topfreedom movement in the United States, they have made quite a bit of progress.  I originally examined them in my Christian blog many years ago.  Mostly the issue back then was legal.  But the real trick of any social movement is to address all concerns including cultural, social and political.  If you are not aware, the topfreedom movement is basically pressing for equal rights of women to appear topless wherever a man can appear topless.  Basically asserting that the different laws for the treatment of men and women’s chests are sexist and violates equal protection under the law.  The issue for them is equal rights under the law.

I was supportive of the topfreedom movement back then even as a Christian because unlike many other Christians I actually realized that the constitution is the law of the land, not the Bible, and even with the Bible, there is no, I repeat no, statement or even indirect reference in the Bible that says a woman exposing her breasts is a sin. From my point of view then, a Christian woman who decided it was too damn hot and took off both bra and shirt and mowed the lawn was not a sinner, she was just being practical.

But what about now without Bible as some sort of appeal to authority and being you basic deistic humanistic pagan, where do I stand on this issue now? Without the whole sin question to consider, then the issue becomes very practical and about equality.      

Discussion:

From a cultural/social point of view, this is going to be a long fight but I stand with these ladies for a lot of reasons.  Most notably to me is a simple fact that socially I feel that these ‘modesty’ constraints are kept mostly to allow the unattractive, the insecure and religious women of the world to have an advantage over those women who are attractive, secure and non-religious.  I see it every time I go to the beach and some attractive woman is wearing a very revealing swimsuit.  All the other women are judging and criticizing because they are not secure in themselves or have a positive body image about themselves. I love it when a woman asks her significant other, who is watching said attractive female, what he thinks and he says: “whatever you think dear.”  This is far more about pecking order among females than anything else. To aid them in this quest for dominance, some women turn to religious moral codes and such to force their way into the law and on other women.

See the source image

My libertarianism kicks in as well to support these women.  If an action is not about force to harm, the threat of force or fraud there is no violation of the Non-Aggression Principle and if there is no victim you can point to and say who was harmed – there is no crime. Can someone tell me who is hurt by a woman walking down the street on a hot day topless?  As far as I can tell the only thing that is harmed is people’s opinions, feelings and sensibilities and none of those things count as far as the NAP violation or a crime.

See the source image

This leads me to the legal issues that how is exposing female nipples a crime and the exposing of male nipples is not a crime?  Note that most laws talk about nipple exposure and not the actual breast itself. I have found this an interesting part of the law as the nipples on men and women are essentially the same.  It is the mammary glands that lead to the mound of the flesh a women’s nipples are on that is the difference between the chests.  However, in most places, if the woman were to put tape over her nipples then she is perfectly legal as she would not actually violate the wording of the law.

See the source image

But I started this post out with the pagan and spiritual side of this and from that standpoint, I would have to say there is something liberating and freeing to the spirit when one frees themselves from the spirit of being a moral busybody and judge of other people.  There can be no greater judgemental attitude that the one where you impose what you think is modest on another because modesty is a spiritual quality of heart and mind, not one of the dress or undress.

See the source image

The other spiritual quality is the appreciation of beauty and in particular the beauty of the human body.  I find a lot of religious believers in God will talk about the beauty of creation and then spend a vast majority of their time trying to cover up one of its most beautiful parts: the human body, both male and female.  In this appreciation of beauty, I have also started to discover something about my attitude about women and their appearance.  I have found a greater understanding that sexual desire and nudity are not always connected. Put simply just because a woman is topless it doesn’t mean she is thinking about or asking for sex anymore than a man who is topless is doing so. Personally, I have learned that real modesty is letting other people be free and if a woman wants to freely walk down the street with her breasts bare, that is her business and I should respect that and not look at it as an invitation for a sexual encounter.

Conclusion:See the source image

When I first was made aware of the topfreedom movement, only one state of our fifty had changed its laws to reflect and equal treatment of men and women regarding toplessness.  Since then there are now 35 states that have followed suit realizing that legally there can be no distinction between a man and a woman’s chest. 

See the source image

The challenge now is in these states many local governments have reacted with their own ordinances and so what the topfreedom movement focuses on there is trying to get the one legal case in that state that will bring the locals government to heel with state law. There is currently one woman bringing legal action against the city of Chicago before the Supreme Court of the United States.  That might be the legal silver bullet that brings about the remaining states and locals to realizing they can either lose money in a lawsuit every time or just let women be topless.

See the source image

The real problem, of course, is that the long term will require society some time to change. Cultural norms change slowly but inevitably.  Like when women were first allowed to show their legs and more cleavage, it takes some time for it to be more normal to everyone in a society. I see change coming for American society regarding this issue and the majority of pushback will come from women and the religious.  In time, even they will have to submit to the inevitable. Sure men will probably at first avert their eyes, but eventually, they won’t think of bare breasts, as usual, any more than bare legs. Time will tell.

Thoughts?

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Freya’s Chambers: Introduction and Opening Thoughts” – Freya’s Chambers

Happy Mani’s Day

Disclaimer:  The topics covered in Freya’s Chambers include serious discussions of sex, sexuality and related issues.  If it isn’t your thing; you can move along, otherwise enjoy and feel free to discuss.

Opening Remarks: 

In today’s modern world, sexuality is a difficult topic, to say the least.  The issue of gender and identity ignites more heat than light and I am not sure that today I am going to help with that.  That’s not the point for me in this post anyway, but more to get a grasp on my own thoughts on the subject by introducing a running discussion. I also want to introduce to you a new topic area which, in keeping with the Norse theme of the blog, I have titled simply “Freya’s Chambers”. Freya is the Norse goddess of war, love, sex, and fertility. It will have its own page and will appear periodically whenever the yen strikes me to write on subjects relating to sexuality in pagan thought.

I need also to point out at the beginning that these are my thoughts on the subject and don’t necessarily represent all pagans, deists or humanists.  In fact, that is part of my motivation for writing on these topics is to sort pagan sexuality out a little because viewpoints on these topics are varied.  The main issue though is that for most pagans, sexuality and spirituality are linked because sexuality is a part of life and living and thus part of the universe that is sacred. Sexuality is as much a spiritual reality as a physical and cultural one. Sacred Sex is a part of the spiritual viewpoint of pagans.

I also have to note that my deism and humanism kick in here as well as the fact I don’t dismiss the findings of biology, psychology or science in general when it comes to talking about gender, sex or sexuality.  I try very much to realize that we do have some scientific findings on the subject that presents both facts and truth in these areas.  I also realize that there is much that is not understood, and this dwells in the realm of spirituality and theory and these also factor in for discussion.

One final note, I was very well known as a Chrisitan blogger who wrote extensively on what the Bible says about sex, nudity, sexuality, and gender.  I have to warn you that my departure from Christianity has changed a lot of my viewpoints.  I have no appeal to authority anymore when it regards these topics.  Mostly I rely on my reason and experience on the deist/humanist side and my intuition and wisdom for the pagan side.  Some might comment at this time that it looks like I am trying to archive male-female balance in my viewpoint.  I am not sure about that but one thing is for sure, that you will see a massive viewpoint shift in these topics compared to what I used to write as a Christian.

So what will be some of the topics in Freya’s Chambers?  Well, sex and sexuality are broad topics to be sure, but below is a shortlist and a little discussion of where I am currently on some topics as examples.  This is not an exhaustive list of course, but I think it will give you a good idea of what you might encounter when you see the suffix heading “Freya’s Chambers”.

Sexual Identity: 

See the source image

I am going to say that if I take science into account, this whole discussion of gender identity for me kind of crystalizes into a few indisputable facts: 1) If you have a penis you are male, 2) If you have a vagina you are a female and 3) males and females are different.  Even pagans have ingrained in there viewpoint the idea of feminine and masculine spiritual forces.  It is part of the mythologies, part of the spiritual viewpoint.

For me, it is also a question of acceptance of self.  You don’t find spiritual peace by trying to be something you are not. Part of achieving spiritual peace is embracing who are and part of that is accepting that you are a man or a woman. There are exceptions to this dichotomy, even genetics tells us that, but such exceptions are rare and not the statistical norm.  The vast majority of us are male or female and that is not just physical but also sociological and psychological

Note this is about identity for me, not orientation.  Personally whether or nor someone’s sexual orientation is a choice or ingrained in who they are is irrelevant to me.  It matters little to me as a deistic humanist pagan, and as a libertarian, who someone has sex with as long as it is mutually consensual. Their business, not mine. I trust that each person can make those choices for themselves, and I am not qualified in any way to judge them right or wrong in their choice.

Nudity and Nudism:

See the source image

Leaving Christianity has allowed me to basically discard the whole tightrope walk of trying to look at nudity and where you fall into sin. Sin is gone in my thinking, so nudity is now looked at as purely as rational and pagan issues.  Things are actually quite free and open now for me on this topic.  Most pagans don’t have a view of nudity as wrong, just sometimes culturally unacceptable by others and in certain contexts. The human body is a beautiful thing and the naked human form should not automatically be seen as sexualized.

Don’t get me wrong there is a sexual side to nudity. To say that seeing a naked human being does not arouse sexual attraction at times is simply to deny reality. But just because a man or woman is naked; it does not follow that they are asking for sex.  Some people learn to distinguish between sexual intent and nudity and some people don’t.  For me the two can be together, but not necessarily.  It really comes down to context. Just because a person is naked, it does not mean that I can look past respecting them as a human being.  I should see their humanity first, then other things and only if it is clear those other things are presented to me.

For me, being an at-home nudist, I have discovered freedom I accepting myself to be very powerful.  I have to also admit, that I sometimes feel far more comfortable in my skin than in clothes. There is also the dual call in my heart, my inner wolves of need and want howling if you will, to shed my clothes both outside and with others. If my self-discovery has grown this much simply at home, I wonder what else could be discovered in other contexts. It is something I wrestle with because of past religious indoctrination and current relationships.

Masculine-Feminine Balance:

There is a reason I am not Wiccan and it was my perception very early on, even as a Christian, that Wiccans are imbalanced as far as gender. There is much emphasis on The Goddess and little else that is masculine.  Hell, their male practitioners argue whether they should be called witches or warlocks.  I just find Wicca to be very feminine and strongly so.  It is why Asatru is my choice because it is much more balanced.

Achieving balance for myself mostly involves making sure I embrace the strength of being a man within my self and the strength of the feminine around me. I get most of the later from the women in my life whose influence can not be understated.  I am very masculine with all that goes with it.  To have feminine perspectives in my life to balance that out is appreciated at all times.

Equality: 

See the source image

The whole ‘God the head of man, man the head of woman’ Christian viewpoint I have discarded like the patriarchal trash it is.  Talk about men writing a book to justify their male dominance over women, and you will not get a better example than the Bible.  I am egalitarian in my orientation and that means I will point out equality in both directions.  However, you also better be able to demonstrate the inequality is real with things like research.  That said, the genders have different strengths in and of themselves, but I don’t feel that one gender should have cultural, legal or social advantages over the other because of them.

For instance, on the one hand, women can rightly say that their roles in society are often forced on them.  There have definitely been some issues as far as to pay, opportunity and the like. On the flip side, the fact that men get longer sentences for the same crime and dower laws still exist requiring a man to take care of his ex after they split, but no such condition exists the other way, is also not equality.  In the United States where I live it has only been recently been challenged that men can be drafted for war but not women.

Going back to nudity above, I side with the ladies in saying if a man can take off his shirt and go bare-chested in certain public places, so should a woman.  On the flip side, the laws are less harsh when it comes to sexual misconduct when a woman exposes her genitals than a man in some states.  My point is that the whole social, cultural and legal world has these inequalities and I fight for their removal but it goes both ways.  It might be summed up in the simple example we need to move from saying: “it is not right to hit or rape a woman” to “it is not right to hit or rape another person”.

Gender Roles:

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Inequalities aside, genetics, science and such tell me that males and females not only are different right from birth, but they also tend to gravitate to different roles in society naturally. Some of these tests have been interesting as girls would dress up the trucks in dresses and boys would turn the dolls they were given to play with into action figures.  I don’t think we can escape the fact that in society women and men embrace certain roles naturally and some roles are just not possible by one gender or the other. We need to be equals as far as legal and societal rights; but in the end, some things just come naturally to one gender or the other.

I take on the feminists on this issue a lot where, for instance, they complain that there are not a lot of women CEOs.  I point out to them there doesn’t seem to be a lot of women coal miners or sewer workers either. It gets comically interesting when it is revealed that what a feminist considers equality doesn’t involve jobs that are dangerous or dirty most of the time. It is pretty clear that men gravitate toward the dangerous and dirty while women like secure and clean.  It is also clear that on dates, the man is still expected to pay for things, etc.  I think feminists reveal a lot of hypocrisy on this one and even women can see it, which is why many women refuse to identify themselves as feminists.

Sex:

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If you ask me the one thing that keeps me believing in the spiritual side of life above all others – it’s sex. Sorry, there is more to sex, at least to me, than just fucking.  Perhaps my perspective has been limited by the fact I have only made love physically to only one woman in my life, or perhaps it is why I feel that way.  One thing I do know that more is exchanged between us when we make love than bodily fluids.

I will talk about sex from time to time in a spiritual context. In this, you might also see the idea of sexual attraction as well. Under this topic, you might find other things like the effect technology has had on sex, etc.  I have had a few experiences of a sexual nature outside sexual intercourse with more than one woman along these lines, so there are notes that could be made.

Conclusion and Final Word: 

Throughout you will see me make note of changes from what I thought before as a Christian and now what I think that I am using more of a deistic humanist pagan mindset. I probably will never speak this broadly again and will take one topic at a time from now on. Mostly today I was pretty much shooting from the hip.  New posts in this topic suffix will probably be deeper in thought.  Mostly though there is a lot of changing things in my mindset that I am trying to crystallize and the best way for me to do that is to put them on digital paper.

Welcome to Freya’s Chambers.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Naked Before Who?” – Odin’s Eye – The Grey Wayfarer’s Spiritual Side

Happy Thor’s Day.    

Discussion:

On May 17, 2013, I wrote this post: Naked Before God – Part 1 – The Positive Spiritual Side of Nakedness.  It was the first post in a series of posts called Naked Before God.  At the time, I was trying to reconcile some findings I had found in my biblical study of nakedness and current Christian practice and its perception of nudity. At the end of that post, I reflected on six positive spiritual aspects of nudity.  Vulnerability, Openness, Intimacy, Genuineness, Wholeness, and Equality.

Those qualities are very spiritual when you think about them as they go to the core of who we are and how we perceive ourselves in relationship to others and the world.  Of course, the problem with this series of posts now; for me personally, is what do I mean about the word ‘God’?

I personally still find being an at-home nudist beneficial.  I am actually quite private about it with no real exhibitionist tendencies being introverted as I am.  That said, I am as comfortable in my own skin as I am in clothes.  Actually sometimes more comfortable because of the spiritual qualities I outlined so long ago still remain true despite my change in faith/religion/spirituality. My issue is redefining how this means to me spiritually.  The change is not the spiritual qualities of nudity so much as the notion that the Christian god is the one I am naked before is no longer true to me.

I suppose this is going to take some time and meditation to redefine, but the problem seems to be that some of these spiritual qualities are dependent on there being some divine force to be naked in front of in the first place. There is also the issue of whether such a divine force gives as shit cares about it.  Yet, I feel at these times that I have spiritual peace or at least a better possibility of spiritual peace than at others.

Time to Look Through the Eye:

“To see the truth, change one eye for another”

Faith:

I know it sounds strange, but I feel that my faith in myself grows in my times of spiritual meditation and part of that is connected to the fact I meditate in the nude. All the spiritual qualities combine at the time. I am open to the universe around me and vulnerable to it. I can see myself for who I truly am (genuineness) – equal to every other man and woman.  There is a non-sexual feeling of intimacy with myself and the world I don’t experience otherwise. I am the whole and true me and me alone.  This faith or whatever you want to call it has lead to a lot of inner healing for me. To those of you out there who practice ‘magic’, is this magic?

Religion:

Of course, I have to from time to time shuck off the shackles of my former religion which trains people to be ashamed of being naked.  I now believe this is what leads to a lot of body image problems and poor self-image problems for people. There was a fear developed in me from an early age by my past religion that if I was naked I should be ashamed of it, my body and being naked automatically lead to sexual sinful thoughts. None of this is objectively true, but if you are going to dominate and manipulate a person, engaging in shaming people for who they are in truth is a good start.  Nudity and sex are great targets for this.  I don’t buy any of it anymore but the indoctrination still has a few things that cause irrational fear that I have to throw off.

Theology:

It is interesting that in pagan theology, there seem to be a lot less moral codes about nakedness.  If anything, there is at worst neutrality about the subject, or at best blatant positivity about its benefits.  The naked pagan walking in the woods is probably a common and an accepted image.  We are human and come into this world naked.  It is our most natural state and foundational spiritual state, and so it is considered beneficial by most.  Whatever power that be that made/evolved us, doesn’t seem to mind our nakedness, so why should we.

Spirituality:

If there is a spiritual challenge to nudity for me now it is twofold. 1) The dumping of artificial man-made social mores that no longer apply to me.  2) Coming to terms with the fact there is a call in my heart to more social nudism.  The first I find it easier every day I spend in the buff doing normal and everyday things. The second is the simple fact that much of the spiritual qualities I have outlined that nudity possesses are incomplete without others to experience them with you. It is a value shift for me that is probably been long in coming, considering how long I have been addressing the subject of spiritual nudity. It isn’t a question of spiritual negativity anymore for me, but a practical question.

Conclusion:

The main question of this post still remains as to who I am naked in front of anymore. If not god, then who.? Do such powers even care? Mostly I think I am naked with myself and coming to terms with the fact that I am very comfortable with it and becoming more so every day. It is a part of my daily at-home activities particularly when I am alone. Only time will tell if I gain a more spiritual understanding of myself and the people and world around me as a result.  There is a part of my journey that now involves walking this path.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

Odin’s Eye – Paganism: Nudism and Sexuality

Happy Thor’s Day

Discussion:

In my Christian blogging day I made quite a name for myself among nudists, naturists, and people of like nature when it came to the subject of nudity and sex.  My view back then was nudity being sinful in and of itself was false.  I have a few online friends who are my friends precisely because of this view and they maintain a Christian nudist lifestyle.  My most famous work from that blog is probably The Bible and Nakedness which you can still view by clicking on the link above.

In addition, I had some controversial views on marriage and sexuality.  Most notably that the bible never condemns polygamy of either form.  That adultery and homosexuality are the same levels of ‘sin’. I proposed that line marriage as proposed by Robert Heinlein is still well within the realms of Christianity, etc.  Mostly I simply separated that which is cultural from that which was the bible and discovered that most of what Christians believe about nudity and sexuality was based more on culture than the Bible.

So what has changed now that I follow a more deistic, humanistic and paganistic path? Honestly, once you take out sin and the appeal to authority; and as I reflect back to the holiday discussion last week, I have the following observations:

  1. Nudity being wrong in some way is pure Grade A opinion and based on cultural mores, not rational thought.  In truth, there is no basis for morality laws regarding nudity or modesty as they are simply one ethical viewpoint imposing itself on everyone else.  There is simply no way to prove a man or woman walking down the street naked is harmful to anyone using reason.
  2. Sexuality has many biological factors and I don’t really support the notion of gender neutrality or fluidity because of genetic and biological reality. There are two genetic and biological genders and it is rare for anyone to be born with none or both.  Most of us are either female or male biologically and those differences are biologically and psychologically observable right from birth.  That’s science, not culture talking. The video below is well researched and linked and points out these are real differences, not culture.
  3. I would say the real problem is not gender identification but rather a lack of personal gender acceptance. It is part of accepting yourself to accept your biological gender. Sorry, most of us either have a penis or a vagina and we need to accept that part of us as part of who we are, not fight it.
  4. That said, I think a lot of role expectations are culturally based, and given my views of liberty, I think gender roles beyond what is biologically natural are often just societal and religious coercion.  How a woman wants to view her role in society is her own business and the same for a man. If a woman wants to be female and do what her culture traditionally thinks is the role of a man, she is perfectly free to do so and she should be allowed to do it.

Of course, the real question looking at it from a pagan point of view is how nudity and sexuality express themselves on the spiritual front.  This reflects more of my pagan opinion than my deism or humanism but they both chime in on this discussion.

Time to Look Through the Eye:

Faith:

I have faith that there is male and female and we can observe that both of these are real, different and beautiful in their naked expressions.  For me, the faith question here is that I think the human body has inspired my spirituality far more than made me feel guilty or ‘sinful’.  What made me feel sinful about the whole thing was the fact that people told me I should be and if I didn’t there was something wrong with me.  In cultures where nudity is common and prevalent, you never hear of this guilt about nakedness to being male or female. Faith tells me that being male, female or naked is nothing to be ashamed of at all. The real problem is not our maleness, femaleness or nakedness, it’s people who want to use those things to promote an agenda.

Religion:

In the area of defining gender roles and demonizing nudity, religion takes center stage.  The Abrahamic religions being the most notorious for the definition of traditional male and female roles according to an ethic that is thousands of years old based on a patriarchal, male superiority mindset. The question I have always wrestled with is why women put up with this but I think ultimately it is the appeal to authority and not wanting to displease ‘god’ that drives it, but then again I have watched as those roles get redefined all the time to reflect reality.  If the various scriptures that are the claims for God’s authority are discredited as simply concoctions of men, then women should be free to follow their own personal sovereignty.

Religion and nudity go way back and some religions are pagan enough in scope that they don’t have a problem with it. Those that do often use their holy books to justify it.  The one problem I developed was that on the one hand, I knew what the religious folks said about nudity being wrong, but my own biblical studies concluded the opposite.  When that happens you start to realize that most of the concerns about the human naked form are based on personal preference and culture, not honest biblical studies.  Religion simply seeks to control people by taking those personal preferences and forcing them on others.

Theology:

My theology these days is based in large part on what is the reality of the world that is.  I don’t engage in fanciful notions about the divine.  I believe in the divine more than I don’t because of notions like love and beauty being something more than biology and physics. That is based on observation from my point of view so take them for that.  When it comes to sexuality I find there is a great design in having two sexes and their need to cooperate as fellow human beings.  Treating each other as justly as possible while respecting differences starts in accepting ourselves as men and women and accepting our differences because of sex.  Glorying in those differences not condemning each other because of them.

Because I don’t believe in sin anymore and dismiss it as a human made up concept, I simply do not see anything inherently wrong with the nude human form. I kind of laugh at our responses to this as we seem to have a greater amount of problems with sex and nudity than violence where people are actually raped and murdered. It’s a sad thing really that something as beautiful and wonderful as sex and the human body has been demonized so that both are considered evil and sinful based on opinions designed to control others. I don’t have that anymore and my attitude toward both is pretty much based on George R R Martin’s below. To me, sex and the beauty of nude human form have given me as much joy as a good painting, book or any other art form and it is a crying shame that most religion and theology rob us of that.

Spirituality:

I draw a lot of spirituality these days from this freedom.  I posted this picture on the pagan pulpit this last Sun’s Day:

Image may contain: 1 person, outdoor, text and nature

For me, it reflects a lot of my changed attitude toward these subjects.  I think the look on the man’s face says it all. The topless woman hasn’t caused him to be a lustful pervert, but she has brightened his day a little by being topless. She isn’t a slut for doing so either, Just a woman taking a walk who is comfortable in her skin. Males and females being themselves and doing what they do without coercing each other to do something they don’t want to do.  No sexual pressure, but there is a sexual expression that is being enjoyed by the man as he sees it and the woman as she does it.

Personally, I find that my liberation from ‘sin’ has been wonderful in both these areas.  I can appreciate good art and writings were the questions fo sexuality and nudity are seriously discussed and beautifully presented.  No appeal to authority jumps in to ruin it.  I now very freely accept that I am a man and I’m heterosexual and enjoy both of those parts of who I am.  So I enjoy the female form and there is nothing wrong with it. While there are certain biological factors in being a man, I don’t accept any societal roles about being a man that is forced on me.  I embrace those I wish to and nothing more.

I feel comfortable in my skin as much as in any clothes I wear. The questions of nudity for me are more about how to avoid being arrested for being freer than others accept, not calling down judgment on others for not sharing mine.  My paganism treats my nudity and that of others as a natural thing not abnormal. Naked is our natural form and represents who we are in truth.  Everything else is an add on.

I draw a lot of spiritual insight and strength from accepting these things and living in these freedoms.

Conclusion:

I doubt society will change with a wave of our hands.  Religion will continue to ruin and pervert sexuality through the forcing of gender roles.  It will continue to demonize the beautiful and seek to cover it over to hide it. Control is the objective of religion through defining roles and social mores.  All of it is bullshit, but it is bullshit we have to live with because of laws that threaten, coerce and engage in fraud to control others.

The best we pagans can do most of the time is to live our lifestyle expressing the truths of real sexuality and nudism when we can.  On the nudism side, some (like myself) find their answer in practicing nudism secretly, while others carve out places in the world to practice it freely without society’s prying eyes. In any case, being the man or woman you want to be is possible without secrecy in the western world at least.  Just be prepared for the backlash of not fitting in with your specific expression of your gender either male or female.

Continuing to Walk the Path,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

A Skald’s Life – Foundational Virtues – Forks in the Road (Part 1)

Happy Moon’s Day. 

Journal Entry:

This week I want to concentrate on some of the future decisions I am going to need to make very soon.  Forks in the road for The Grey Wayfarer.  When it comes to my Foundational Level this is more about my general purpose for my life,  What is the overall plan.  Business is how I handle others, and Self is of course about how I handle myself.  Foundational forks in the road are about principles I live by at all times.

The most significant change in my life in the last year was my departure from my faith which significantly changed my life both in my profession and my personal life. MY new ‘faith’ has been somewhat a question I wrestle with a lot. The one thing the Nine Noble Virtues has done for me, it has kept my life at a foundational level somewhat stable to go forward. That said every day is a challenge regarding ethical and moral decisions and that is what the foundational virtues are all about as I go forward on the path.

Honor:

Honor is the feeling of inner value and worth from which one knows that one is noble of being, and the desire to show respect for this quality when it is found in the world”

Principle – To possess a feeling of inner value about myself and my future with a desire to find the same in others.

Goal: Maintain a daily blog streak of one post per day for an entire year (365 days).

Bucket List: Hike the Northern Lakeshore Trail along the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Whatever path I take these days I want it to be an honorable one.  I want it to be something that as I walk that path, there is a feeling of inner value in what I am doing.  in a recent conversation with a friend, he asked me how the job search was going.  Oddly enough I didn’t refer to a business virtue for the answer but this concept of Honor. I want something that fits that gives my life meaning and value to myself. Where I can better recognize honor in others, once I possess it for myself.

Courage:

“Courage is the bravery to do what is right always.”

Principle – Act with Courage at the right time.

Goal: Cross one thing off bucket list every year. Deadline March 31st

Bucket List: Go Back to Budapest, Hungary for a vacation.

I am finding when Courage is needed in any decision, it is more about following my intuition than what I see.  I know you would think as an INFJ personality type, I would do this automatically, but actually, that makes you second guess yourself a lot instead of following your instincts.  I need to make a lot more decisions following my instincts.  They are far more often right than wrong. It is one thing to logically look at things and see the Truth of the situation, but at the same time what is right is often not a matter of logic.  Doing the right thing at the right time is about a soul-deep decision that is more about guts than brains.

Truth:

“Truth is the willingness to be honest and to say what one knows to be true and right. It is often better to not say anything at all if one cannot be honest.”

Principle – To Be Honest, and Speak Truth to Myself and Others.  To Be Silent in the presence of Fools.

Goal: To Write a Non-Fiction Book by March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: Learn Latin by March 31st, 2020 to the point I can take a test and show my self proficient.

Now, this is not to say logic and reason don’t have a lot to do with my decisions.  What I find Truth does – it defines what decisions are relevant and possible.  It doesn’t make the decisions necessarily, but it helps me define what decisions need to be made and what benefits I can perceive through the Truth that each of those decisions has or might have.  It is how mostly I see the path and the choices before me.

Higher Virtue: Love:

Which of my choices follows the most loving path? It is one of my three questions I ask at each decision point. Each fork in the road starts with this question of what is the most loving thing to do? There are two others that I will get to under Justice and Wisdom, but this one is usually the first. The thing I have to remember is the first person I need to love so I can love others, is myself.  I have long neglected this part of love and I have made a commitment to ask the questions of self-love these days.  It is starting to become more foundational and that is a good thing.

Morning Routine:

  1. Review Nine Noble Virtues (NNV), Principles, Goals and Bucket List
  2. Meditation – 3 min.
  3. Check Communications and Email.
  4. Paper Journal: Create Daily Log and To Do List.
  5. Breakfast, Medications, and Supplements.
  6. Shower and Personal Hygiene
  7. Get Dressed for the Day

I need to focus on this again and I think Stretching is going to come back after meditation. Mostly I miss stretching every morning in the nude. It was not only a physically relaxing thing to do but a spiritual one as well.

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!