I have to admit this topic has been on my mind a few times, but i avoided writing about it because the logistics of it kind of drove me nuts.
I have been thinking about the more or less complex definition of the Naturist, the Nudist, and Naturism and Nudism.
The way i am beginning to see it is that Naturism is much more of a lifestyle, a choice, something that truly helps to define a part of the Naturalist’s personality and being. While the Naturist does not abhor or hate clothing, they believe that clothes are not part of the natural state of the human being and so therefore they should not be used or needed unless the temperature or environment calls for it. The Naturist believes being nude allows for freedom of one’s self, one’s body, and one’s mind. That to be nude invites healing one’s self and promotes heath. Naturism calls for a commitment in many ways, but does not demand. The Naturist lifestyle can be returned to whenever one chooses. Naturism is not a cult nor does it worship the Sun or the human form. Naturism is apolitical and generally doesn’t choose sides. Although it will support legislation that would allow for the Naturist to be in the nude the public. Naturism is non-sexual, but it not prudish or hateful of sex.
Nudism is different in my opinion. Nudism is personal and in many ways private. The nudist prefers his/her nakedness to be more of a private affair. Many Nudists are at-home Nudists. They usually do not wear clothes are home, but will remained clothed when company comes over. While Nudists do visit naturist resorts they go mainly to express their nakedness in a more public setting. They generally do not have a desire to become members or regular visitors to any clothing optional resort. The Nudist generally has no problem wearing clothes and see the wearing of textiles as just a normal part of life. While clothing is still considered optional, it is also something of a necessity. Nudists often mix their being nude with politics and social movements. They support a cause if it seems to portray the nude form as something good and normal. Often the nudist may link Nudism with social justice causes. The Nudist is often very shy about his/her nudeness and generally would not share that they are nude at home even with close family and friends. The reason for this is the social stigma that comes with being nude in a open or public setting. The Nudist fears being shunned by others even for being nude at home.
Now all of this is just my opinion on the difference between Naturism and Nudism. I am not stating that anyone is one or the other.