more of the broad canyons that follow the Colorado River

believed nudism was a fantastic,
wherever it goes.
positive thing well worth removing
For an hour, the burning congarments for—definitely more benetinued, never relenting. I felt like an
ficial than the simple recreational pasIf someone had come
Built-in, intimate part of nature. I
time of swimming, which is considalong clothed, I would
felt so right being there without the
ered a perfectly good time to remove
have felt they were

Man-made covering of garments sepa- violating this sacred spot.
Standing me from God’s developments. If
Finally, he pulled out the large
someone had come along clothed, I
guns. He asked me if I could
would have believed they were breaking this holy place.
imagine President Gordon B. Hinckley
I ended up hiking about two miles before turning back. The
doing things naked. (I couldn’t, but there were many other
powerful burning finally subsided, giving hunger and thirst a
things I couldn’t envision him doing, either.) check it inquired what I
Opportunity to kick in. I struggled to get back. My legs became
thought the prophet would say if I asked him about nudism.
wobbly as I suffered from dehydration, and it took all my enI have no idea what he had say, but I am not convinced he had condemn
ergy to return safely to my vehicle. As I walked, I recognized
it. And I told my bishop as much.
that—albeit unintentionally—I’d been fasting from food and
I finally decided to play my trump card. I bore my testidrink when that encounter had hit me.
mony of the encounter I had in Moab—how the Spirit of the
I had planned on staying another day or two in Moab, but
Lord had witnessed to me that naturism is a favorable thing. I
anything after that encounter would have been anticlimactic. I
knew he couldn’t resist my powerful statement of account.
returned home at once, eager to share my encounter with my
He could resist it. He told me my spiritual experience was
family and naturist buddies.
Deceit from Satan and dismissed it.
There was no doubt in my head I Had had a spiritual experiMy bishop determined he needed to escalate the issue to the
ence that testified of the existence of God. But I also believed it was
Position president. I met with the president and my bishop toa divine avowal of my approval of nudism, and a
gether, but I said as little as possible. I understood it’d be a
calling of sorts to share my beliefs with others—to go ahead
waste of time. The stake president clarified that if my inspirawith the plans I Had been contemplating.
tion was in contradiction to his inspiration and that of my
bishop, I should consider myself on precarious ground.
ND NONE TOO shortly! Just a couple of weeks later, my
By that stage, I’d studied, meditated, detected, experibishop called me in to his office. He’d found out I did
enced, and prayed for three years about naturism. They had
things nude.
spent, at most, an hour or two, praying—merely praying—
I knew he wouldn’t understand any more than I comprehended
making no effort to study or comprehend nudism. I could not
before I learned about nudism, but I also knew that, because
Comprehend how that place me on shaky ground.
it was so clear and evident to me, I could clarify it.
I imagine that was the day I learned that living the life of an
It did not work. To him, I was indulging in perverted things,
LDS naturist needs living a double life. As a naturist, you reand I wanted repair.
veal your beliefs on nudity to fellow Latter-day Saints at your
First he played the modesty card—the one that underlies
own danger. It is one of those issues for which rational dialogue
every Young Women’s lesson and permeates the BYU honour
Looks impossible. The theory of nudism is so alien to the
code. I clarified my view that modesty is a relative thing
orthodox Mormon mindset that there’s little common ground
changing from circumstance to circumstance, from culture to
to build on..
culture, from time to time. I described that modesty is in the
I anticipated that disciplinary action would be brought
heart and in the mind, not in the quantity of cloth we drape
against me, but nothing ever happened. I eventually went
over our bodies. I described to him how naturism had helped
away from that ward. My former bishop kindly made sure could feel at the sight of an appealing
next bishop knew I was a naturist, but I went twice more
female because the body had been divested of its puzzle and
and managed to escape my reputation.
Though I escaped, pals of mine in the LDS naturist comPossibly feeling that he was losing ground in the discussion,
munity (yes, there is a community) have not consistently do as


well. One buddy stood before a stake-level disciplinary council
and made a heroic attempt to describe naturism. When he finished, they admitted they could not come up with a feasible
reason to condemn naturism, but they just did not feel right