“Why is the group clothing-optional?”
The simple answer:
The detailed answer:
It’s easier, really, to add up the reasons why we might wear clothing, and then see what’s left if none of them apply.
Pretty much every garment has a purpose that is some combination of:
- To provide protection from the elements, harsh conditions, or hazards.
- To indicate rank or status.
- To shape other people’s impressions of the wearer.
- To comply with cultural norms and rules laid down by other people.
To expand on those categories, we can consider some familiar examples:
- Protective clothes include winter coats, bug- and brush-resistant jeans, mechanic’s coveralls, welders’ smocks, and sailors’ foul-weather gear.
- Military uniforms, business suits and red-carpet dresses are primarily about showing off one’s high status, rank, wealth or power.
- Bikinis and lingerie are designed to draw the eye to specific areas in a sexually appealing way; billowing pastel-and-lace long-sleeve dresses are designed to symbolize traditional religious purity; biker leather is designed to make the wearer instantly identifiable as part of a specific subculture.
- Most of our day-to-day attire is chosen, in large part, according to what other people like us seem to be wearing. Swimsuits, which serve no practical purpose outside of elite competition, are a classic example.
How does that apply to us?
We don’t have or want rank or status here. However those things might affect you in day-to-day life, they’re irrelevant to us.
We do have equality here; garments that specifically try to emphasize or repress sexuality or to put the wearer in a specific category tend to work contrary to that goal, and it’s much easier to be truly honest and open with someone when there’s nothing to hide.
And we’ve found that real freedom is pretty hard to experience when other people are judging your inherent worth as a human based on the fabrics that happen to be covering you at the time.
That leaves only protection – a logical, practical category that we Canadians, with our long cold winter and bug-ridden spring, can’t ignore.
So we try to be nude when it’s possible, we bundle up with fabrics when it’s practical, and the choice of what (if anything) to wear is up to each individual.