There are many other spiritual disciplines. In fact there are a lot of them depending on how you look at spiritual discipline in general. It also depends on how, if at all, you compartmentalize spiritual things. If your more open, the spiritual could be all of life or if you are less spiritual, it could be a very narrow band of disciplines.
In Christianity and among Christian devotional masters, there are a few that might be related to nudity as a spiritual discipline: fasting, simplicity, submission, pilgrimage and suffering. There are many more, but these five seem to fit best.
I include fasting for two reasons: 1) It is the discipline that in my mind is the closest to nudity in its intention and effect. While fasting can stand alone as a spiritual discipline, it is best when coupled with others like meditation and prayer. It both can be spiritually enlightening in and of itself but it also has tremendous value when coupled with other disciplines. Nudity is very similar. 2) Fasting is often brought in to enhance or create certain spiritual scenarios that people can grow by. Prayer and fasting are often coupled together for instance. The question then is simple: If one is praying and fasting can you not add nudity into that mix to create a trifecta of sorts in one spiritual discipline of prayer with both nudity and fasting enhancing the experience?
I remember reading Richard Foster’ books: Celebration of Discipline and Freedom of Simplicity. Both of these books pointed to the idea od a simple lifestyle as a spiritual discipline of its own and a powerful one. One of the things dealt with in the discipline of simplicity is the subject of clothes and not just throwing something away because it is old or out of fashion. In fact the idea of fashion is talked about in great detail as one of the great enemies of stewardship. Nudity oddly enough becomes the simplest dress of all and does not cost anything. On a practice of simplicity scale this would be a 10 out of 10. Nudity as part of a simple life would not only enhance simplicity but be simple in and of itself.
I have spoken already of the subject of nudity in the presence of God being like taking the form of a slave before the Almighty. I actually can think of no better symbolic gesture toward God that would illustrate the ‘bond slave of Christ’ concept than to kneel prostrate before God in the nude.
I find that as I read spiritual minded nudists that the idea of pilgrimage is very present. There is often the notion of going somewhere to be naked and it is often for spiritual reasons of some sort. Naturists are very much into the going someplace beautiful and spending time in communion with the divine. The going somewhere to find oneself and to have nudity a part of it is definitely on the landscape of a pilgrimage.
I am probably bringing in the more negative aspects of nudity here in regards to exposure to the elements not necessarily shame. The idea is to live naked for a time with nor shelter or covering regardless of what the elements would bring. Taken to extremes I would not recommend this but to simply not be able to cover up when it is cold or hot would cause our sympathy for those who do not have clothing in poverty situations to change to empathy.
The advantage of nudity in relationship to personal disciplines both inward and outward is its flexibility and versatility. It can be combined with many different combinations of disciplines but it also can stand alone. In the context of us each in our prayer closets, it can be a powerful addition to what we already do as we attempt to understand the divine.
The real problem enters when we bring other people in the picture.
Next: Spiritual Nakedness with Others