I’m familiar with the discussion. The discussion, debate, or argument over what defines a true or real nudist or naturist and what kinds of photos are appropriate for a true naturist to post and what types of images a true naturist should never post. Sometimes the discussion goes into the minimum number of images a true naturist should post of him- or herself. There are many in these online communities who feel that any one who does not have at least a nude profile picture is obviously only there to look at everyone else’s’ naked pictures. This “discussion” can be found on nearly every naturist social media site or wherever naturists gather online. It’s probably been going on since the Usenet days.
In all that time, the discussion really hasn’t changed nor has it progressed. I’ve seen so many lists specifying that a true naturist must do this and that but can never do these other things. When I run across these discussions, I generally make a hasty retreat. I’ve found that there is no usually point in expressing a different viewpoint as their minds are made up and to try to use reason and logic with them is futile.
When it comes down to it, we are all self-defined naturists. We are all naturists for personal reasons and how we define ourselves as naturists is as individual, and often as complex, as we are. We each have our own reasons for practicing naturism and have own expectations of how we benefit from it. Sometimes our reasons are hard to articulate, especially to those who don’t have that core experience which serves as a reference.
It’s natural for us to want to fit everyone into neat categories. It’s convenient when pegs fit neatly into their assigned holes. But some of us, probably most of us, have a few rough edges that prevent us from fitting into the hole perfectly. I think it’s those rough edges that make us more interesting to others.
What’s the point of the “true naturist” discussions? I honestly don’t know. I find them largely irrelevant. I don’t care if I meet anyone’s definition of a true naturist. I have the core experience of naturism and although my definition of myself as a naturist is continually evolving, I think I’ve found a good core set of naturist values to guide me, not only in my pursuit of naturism but in my life.
Be the best naturist you can be, naked or clothed. That’s being a true naturist.