“Show profile as naturists”
By Christoph Müller

It is incredible what is happening again in many places in Western Europe. During the last days the textile-free sunbath is being questioned again. In Munich security officers have forbidden women to lie without the top of their bikinis at the banks of the Isar-River. In the Austrian Bundesland Vorarlberg it is emphasized that the law of morals prohibit both the naturist and the topless sunbathing. (*)

Why is that happening? What is the purpose of that prohibition? The whole thing is not comprehensible. From my point of view this proves that the societies are increasingly moving towards prudery. One does not move too permissively in public. It appears that nude people are being perceived as a danger, respectively as a threat. But unfortunately nobody tells us as naturists, whom we actually are threatening.

There would be something funny if the contemporary societies had discovered their pleasure of playfulness. The covered body of a woman or a man can serve as a stage for something sensual. The fantasy of a single person can be motivated when he or she moves in an attractive bikini or attractive swimming trunks. That way the presentation of an individual may produce an enthusiasm for something playful.
For us as naturists this appears to be incomprehensible. We pull down our clothes because we first of all feel freer when we take off our shirts, blouses and pants. Especially during summertime the heat becomes more bearable. Even more: there is an idea behind the undressing – the idea of increasing harmony with nature and of enjoying of being-in-nature.

The women at the Isar-River probably have fared the same way. They thought they were living in a liberal society where topless sunbathing is experienced as something natural that does not see a social outcry anymore. For sure, they did not lie down in the sun just to arouse sexual interest.

What meanwhile astonishes me is the lack of outcry by contemporaries who enjoy a more permissive sunbath or naturism. During the last five decades people have fought for the liberty for all of us that we may live more permissively. The battle for uncovering and nudity has been fiercely fought in the 1960’s and 1970’s. This has lead to the fact that in the 1980’s and 1990’s the nude female breast and the uncovered body could become a commonplace.

Since the Internet has gained in importance, nudity and uncovering are accessible by a simple click. Since then, the freedom of the naturists has decreased. On the one hand naturists must think where, when and how they uncover themselves. After all, they do not know whether they are being filmed or photographed at the same time. On the other hand the excitement about a topless sunbath can surely be understood as a defence against nudity.

I hope you took the 7th July (World Naturist Day) as an opportunity to show our profile as naturists. Or do we want to lose the liberty to be allowed to live nude, from foot to neck?

Christoph Müller is the EU Assessor of the International Naturist Federation (INF-FNI).

(*) Due to masssive complaints, the ban has been withdrawn for the time being, but will continue to exist in the parks.