Author Topic: Escapism  (Read 153 times)

jbeegoode

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Escapism
« on: June 03, 2019, 09:09:35 PM »
BlueTrain brough up the idea of escapism on the sunscreen thread, "It is all about escapism."

I don't like it when I am escaping into nature. I prefer to be heading into a different reality. I'm closer to my being that way. If I'm escaping, then I'm too far removed. BlueTrain, that is an interesting concept, "escapism," in naturism and naturalism. What are we escaping from that requires us to escape, or feel an escape?

Sometimes it is a tuneup, or readjustment to take a walk nude to Havarock. Sometimes it is an augmentation to my naturism.

When I need my get away, what is going on in my life?

For example, I found that I had escaped a few weeks ago. I thought that it was just a birthday celebration, a few days close to my nature and a backpack exploration. When I got out there, I was in the moment, taking care of what was in front of me and where I was. I had lost a great deal of that. I hadn't realized how affected the stressors had me. I knew something was up, but denied the extent on my psyche. On the trail, particularly nude, I got the cure. It is like a vacation being badly needed. It should be an immersion into a bath, a breath of fresh air, not an escape.

I met a couple from Kansas at our garage sale this weekend. They were looking at my old cameras and the older technology. They told me that they lived on a farm that was one hundred years ago technology. They said that they had read a study where it had been highly therapeutic for people to be immersed into a situation where they were living like they did when they were teenagers.  Stepping back in time, sort of. They are very pleased to be there.

While we conversed, I couldn't help but reflect on my naturism and camping. While camping, there is a lot of busy, and depending, a different more rustic level of daily activity. There are fewer moral dilemmas, here are no upsetting news stories and fears, and little concern with building a future. It is more elemental, doing what needs to be done in front of oneself, no microwave. If done correct, there is more primitive body movement like squatting, pounding wood, or taking a walk, or hike. Things tend to be more in tune with the sun, or time around a campfire. Is that escape, or is that creating a more natural and realistic state? Our lives are not natural to our evolution anymore. More than just stuck in clothing, we are anxious about things that are not about us, instead of concerned with the threats about us. Food is an after thought, stuck into the day, instead of the focus of the day. We sit in furniture to lull our bodies, instead of letting our bodies be of use. Entertainment is not simple, often self generated and creative.

I'm getting a bit Thoreau, "living deliberately," but was that a journey of discovery, or was it an escape, or a path to other consciousness.

I have been stuck in the transition of rearranging my home and lifestyle, but my intent for the future, is some summer nude glamping in the White Mountain forests. I can take it on the road in the future. My 4x4 will get me into remote and unbothered paradises. I have a wood burning stove for a nice cotton tent for luxury. I don't like being covered in a quilt feeling wet while it rains in the monsoon afternoon. I won't need to worry about food. Just take a drive to get a cooler load every few days. My sit down chairs are about worn out. I'm getting shorter legs for outdoors. The shelter is rugs and cushions, floor living. I have a gas stove, if I don't cook over a fire, or not cook. It is glamping, but more fundamental. Instead of writing on paper, a laptop and solar charge will do. I'll have a digital camera. DF will be around part time, but I'll have time alone, too.

I may like this and travel to places in the northwest, or Colorado Rockies. I have a solar hot water shower. I have a composting shitter. I'll have my guitar. I'll be comfortable, just a step down toward more fundamental conditions in nature. I'll also have backpacking as a choice.

That being said, is it escapism, or is it getting in touch with something that we all need, something that has been lost?

How long can I be in solitude, before I miss my tribe?
Jbee

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BlueTrain

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2019, 10:39:13 PM »
You have brought up several interesting points. I'm afraid this response may not touch on all of them or any of them very well.

First off, I don't think solitude or solitary living enters into the matter, even though by nature, man is not a solitary creature. Nevertheless, many do live as solitaries or hermits, some even 'officially' (within religious rules), of more than one religion, too. But living in a secluded place would tend to eliminate distractions.

Escapism, as I have used the word, is like going to the movies. That is a different reality, usually fiction. It's a form of entertainment. Sure, we can entertain ourselves and others, too, but people have been going to the theater for a long time, just not the movies. But at least one reason for taking a walk in the woods is to escape the petty problems of the house and garden. It's only one reason, though, and minor one at that. Other reasons include simple exercise (got to keep moving!) and also, mainly, to see what's there and for a change of scenery.

For most of us living in the suburbs (can't speak for where all of you live, though), life isn't bad. That is, when you're actually at home. Commuting might be a headache but that's about it. The air is clean, mostly, it isn't polluted or dirty or noisy. In other words, it's a nice place to live. That is, unless you don't like people living close by. But for the early nudists in Europe, they were literally escaping from the dirty, noisy and polluted cities. Even though they sometimes basically camped out for a week or two, I don't think they thought in terms of "communing with nature" or anything like that. It was chiefly for health reasons. It was literally re-creation. Supposedly Adolf Koch, an early nudist leader, never referred to nature. He was a nudist; not a naturist. At the time, naturism included other movements, which in turn was part of a larger social reformist movement. Part of that did include something of a back-to-nature idealism (think late 1960s and 1970s) but I don't think there was any strictly defined and pure idea of whatever that could mean.

Me, I'm the same wherever I am. I don't change or at least not much, depending on where I am. There is much to recommend simplifying our lives, although we don't have to go naked--or nude--to do so. Mostly it's all in the head, anyway. Who am I to say what a simple life is anyway? I don't have a cellphone and I don't watch television. But if I did, would that complicate my life? Do those things pose moral dilemmas?

I have lived in a place without a telephone, no inside bathroom and with both a coal-burning stove (for heat) and a wood-burning kitchen range. That was indeed a simple life. But make no mistake, it does not follow that it was so much an easy life. People around there were happy when all the mod cons became available. Nature never entered into the matter and as far as I could tell, neither did morality. That isn't to say people there never had moral issues, whether or not they recognized any of them.

I like the expression, to live deliberately. To me, it means to live as though every little thing you do is important. That is, it's worth doing and worth doing well. I'm not saying to sweat the small stuff. Maybe we should think more about what we do and why. It won't be the same all the time as we go through the years, I suspect. When you have children at home, every little thing is really, really important. But some parents don't seem to pay much attention to their kids. But all the same, don't be too quick to judge them. In fact, you aren't supposed to judge them at all.

None of this is to suggest that anything is supposed to be easy. Ordinary everyday life is difficult enough as it is, "properly lived." That's why George Washington Sears (Nessmuk) said we don't go to the woods to rough it. We go to smooth it.

I haven't been able to insert more about being naked here but what's there will have to do. But have you ever noticed that many people who go to live in tents and simple off the grid lives, have internet blogs and YouTube videos?

BlueTrain

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2019, 11:31:26 PM »
I should add here that my response was written off the cuff, as it were, and I was lucky to get the whole thing written without hitting the wrong button and have it all disappear. There's a lot more to be said about the subject, too.

I find Thoreau and his writings to be fascinating and easy to ready. But I am almost 30 years older than he was when he died, so I'm starting to realize that he never got to see things from an older person's point of view. It would have been interesting, no doubt, what he might have had to say about it. But when he was ill and close to death, someone supposedly asked him if he had made his peace with God. He said "I am not aware that we had disagreed."

jbeegoode

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2019, 11:34:30 PM »


I haven't been able to insert more about being naked here but what's there will have to do. But have you ever noticed that many people who go to live in tents and simple off the grid lives, have internet blogs and YouTube videos?

 ;D ;D ;)
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nuduke

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2019, 03:06:33 PM »
1 It is more elemental, doing what needs to be done in front of oneself, no microwave. If done correct, there is more primitive body movement like squatting, pounding wood, or taking a walk, or hike. Things tend to be more in tune with the sun, or time around a campfire. Is that escape, or is that creating a more natural and realistic state?
2 I'm getting a bit Thoreau, "living deliberately," but was that a journey of discovery, or was it an escape, or a path to other consciousness.

3 but my intent for the future, is some summer nude glamping in the White Mountain forests. I can take it on the road in the future. My 4x4 will get me into remote and unbothered paradises.
4 I have a wood burning stove for a nice cotton tent for luxury. I don't like being covered in a quilt feeling wet while it rains in the monsoon afternoon. I won't need to worry about food. Just take a drive to get a cooler load every few days. I have a gas stove, if I don't cook over a fire, or not cook. It is glamping, but more fundamental. Instead of writing on paper, a laptop and solar charge will do.  I'll have time alone, too.
5 I have a solar hot water shower. I have a composting shitter. I'll have my guitar. I'll be comfortable, just a step down toward more fundamental conditions in nature. I'll also have backpacking as a choice.
6 That being said, is it escapism, or is it getting in touch with something that we all need, something that has been lost?
7 How long can I be in solitude, before I miss my tribe?

Jbee 
So...
1. What a great thought.  But fairly obvious - To do ordinary things with a mindful attention and control is very...well...Zen and contemplative.
2. Just so - I don't know much about Thoreau but I do know he didn't eschew civilisation or the trappings of modernity, he was an industrialist and factory owner - he lived in Walden Woods for the transcendental experience.  I think he would probably have approved of your proposed high tech simple life! 
3,4,5. A list of the trappings of technology.  If it were me I know I couldn't survive on nothing, like Thoreau (although he must have bought supplies during his woodland life).  So I can see that having stuff to reduce the chores whilst camping can give you more time and less stress of survival so as to experience the transcendental aspects - which is what you want to go out there for, isn't it?
6. It is a need or a want to be alone with your thoughts and experiences, a lack of desire for living in normal social circumstances in a town - it is transcendentalism, an epicureanism - which is, to quote Wikipedia, to live modestly, to gain knowledge of the workings of the world, and to limit one's desires to attain a state of tranquility (ataraxia) and freedom from fear as well as an absence of bodily pain (aponia) which constitutes happiness in its highest form.  Is it not?
7. $64 question that!  Depends who your tribe is.  The only way is to try!  You can always come home again!  Maybe you won't miss the tribe and never come home again!

The difference between you doing it, Jbee is that you have the warmth of Az in favour of you remaining Naked.  Bob or I wouldn't make more than a few months before we had to clothe up against the cold.

Quote from: Blue Train
But have you ever noticed that many people who go to live in tents and simple off the grid lives, have internet blogs and YouTube videos?
I'm looking forward to your withdrawal to the woods Jbee because with your PC and solar panels you will blog to the world and allow us to experience something of your sojourn.  Are we your tribe?  In which case we will be there online.  But maybe that will puncture the transcendental state of mind.
Interensting proposition anyway, Jbee.  Would this be before or after Greece?  Your bucket is getting full with its list!  .I wish I had so much in my Bucket
John

jbeegoode

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2019, 04:29:37 AM »
I am making time for my bucket list. I'm retiring so as to be able to roam freely...nude. I'm also getting better and better about my health, which will give me more years to get through the list. A list will adapt to reality. Old lists have been retooled and Jbee changes and evolves. The list will keep me going and keep my life full.

This is a different way of doing much of what I have been, implementing a situation which will help me keep on track things that I get distracted from and explore, explore, explore.

I'm not so sure about your "epicurean" comment. That is a new term and I have just done a quick look on the internet which was telling me that it isn't quite on the money, but maybe you're correct to pin that tag on.

Be mindful, be in the moment, keep it simple and basic. Write those things that have been put off, with less distraction. Spend days where a meal is an important time, exercise plans are daily, walks are free. Primitive experiences and experiments are set like creative toys in the woods (might make a primitive chair for example). Reflect, be natural, know nature and all that is camping out. A couple or more weeks at a time, like a summer house, and escape the summer's heat in Tucson. Where exercise is built into lifestyle. It is another consciousness and can be peaceful. I used to love spending time at my parents mountain summer home. This may be more my style, not a golf course, but natural. We'll see how DF takes to it, too.
Jbee
Jbee
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ric

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2019, 10:27:36 AM »
were pretty much doing the same thing, winding down our business interests , not actively seeking new clients to replace the ones that move away or drop out. our 5 bed bungalow is up for sale at an optimistic price,    were spending more time pottering in the sunshine, not worrying about hiding from the neighbours or delivery persons, generally chilling out.

John P

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2019, 07:10:56 AM »
Here in Massachusetts, Thoreau is pretty much our patron saint. I'm impressed that you know something about him there in England, Nuduke! But it's a bit of a stretch to say he was an "industrialist and factory owner"--his father operated a pencil factory which was more at the level of a cottage industry than anything, and Henry worked there from time to time, and apparently made some improvements in the product. When he worked for money, he mostly did surveying, after his initial disastrous job as a teacher, which ended when he wasn't willing to thrash knowledge into the pupils.

I think Thoreau would be very dubious about technology. Two of his famous quotes are "We are in great haste to construct a magnetic telegraph from Maine to Texas; but Maine and Texas, it may be, have nothing important to communicate." And "the poor fellow who walks away with the greatest number of letters, proud of his extensive correspondence, has not heard from himself this long while." He'd be likely to tell us to get off our computers and find a way to experience the world personally!

As it happens, I got some pictures at Walden Pond on Halloween Day last year. And there's one in the visitors' center where a certain quote struck me enough that I took a picture of it. JBG, I think you'd  like the idea of nature seen as a religious experience! (The picture with the signboard was taken at the site of Thoreau's cabin, which is marked out with stone posts. Visitors leave stones in a pile as tokens of their link with the place, or something. And yes, I have swum nude in Walden Pond, years ago. Maybe I need to do it again, so I can post a trip report.)

      








jbeegoode

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2019, 07:00:08 PM »
Is there camping anywhere around Walden Pond (A BIGass lake where I come from)? Wouldn't it be a great connection to wake a few mornings and "bathe" there from a tent. "Yea, Got it Henry. I'm living, today."
Jbee
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Bob Knows

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2019, 02:53:11 PM »
Did Thoreau go naked all summer while "living naturally"?   Anyone read enough of his writing to know?
Human bodies are natural, comfortable, and green.
To see more of Bob you can view his personal photo page
http://www.photos.bradkemp.com/greenbare.html

jbeegoode

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #10 on: June 14, 2019, 02:00:26 AM »
What I've read alludes to more naturism than a morning bath. It has been quite a while since I dug into his and Emerson's, though a strong influence in my teens. Naked all summer, no. He had visitors, I don't think that he owned the property, the culture was pretty proper around him, it wasn't custom to be without clothes. Does a bear do it in the woods, when alone?

From Walden,"inhabitants of Tierra del Fuego" who went "naked with impunity, while the European shivers in his clothes" - model citizens of Thoreau's utopia of doing without. He dressed with economy and got hassled about it. He was looking at natural, and "Indian" ways. He had to have experimented without clothing and everybody is a naturist.

"Give me healthy senses, let me be thoroughly alive, and breathe freely in the very flood-tide of the living world." Could you imagine this guy getting up taking a breath, going down to "bathe" and then getting dressed, every time?

" April 9, 1841:The Indian...stands free and unconstrained in Nature, is her inhabitant and not her guest, and wears her easily and gracefully. But the civilized man has the habits of the house. His house is a prison."

"If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away." Of course he tried naturist activities out, he experimented.

Me, just hitting the woods, getting disengaged, coasting, living and writing about the here and now. I might do that, but my own sense of it. On the road...some here some there. However, I have nothing that I need to escape, except the mandatory isolation from my senses and them in this incredible natural world.

Jbee
« Last Edit: June 14, 2019, 02:09:24 AM by jbeegoode »
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John P

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #11 on: June 14, 2019, 04:36:21 AM »
And since we were just talking about lakes:
"A lake is a landscape's most beautiful and expressive feature. It is Earth's eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature."

No, you can't camp at Walden Pond. It's a very heavily visited state reservation, officially closed after dark. Unfortunately there was a period when the state treated it more as a recreational location than a historic one, and a beach was set up where they built a bath-house in 1947, which is still in existence. Not close to Thoreau's cabin site, fortunately! To add to the insult, there was a residential trailer park across the road (called "Walden Breezes" as I recall) and the town of Concord had its municipal dump just round the corner. Then remorse set in, and the dump was excavated and all the stuff hauled away to be someone else's problem, and the trailer park was closed down.

I'm sure Thoreau swam nude--swimsuits really hadn't been invented in his day. If I'm remembering it correctly, he also had an activity he called river walking, where he'd walk in waist-deep streams wearing only a shirt. He wasn't a naturist as we understand that term, but I think he'd have liked the idea.

Better pictures than mine:
https://fineartamerica.com/featured/walden-pond-bath-house-concord-ma-toby-mcguire.html

nuduke

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Re: Escapism
« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2019, 10:44:00 PM »

Thanks for the pics of Walden pond, John P.
I have known about Thoreau for many years having discovered him via looking for a quotation one time - he is surprisingly often quoted.  I haven't read any of his works.
However, knowing that he lived there but with only my mind's eye for guidance, it's nice to see someone's own pictures rather than just the official wikipediaesque stuff.
John