NAKED BEFORE GOD
By Daniel D. Ziegler
Chapter 13 NAKED BEFORE GOD WEDDING CEREMONY
Nude weddings are very special, particularly when the spiritual significance
of the nudity is recognized and included in the ceremony itself. I have
written this ceremony for that reason--to bring appreciation to the spiritual
significance of the nudity rather than leaving it as incidental or as a
novelty. The portion of this ceremony addressing the nudity can be
inserted into most traditional wedding ceremonies. Couples wishing to
create their own ceremonies may find some of my ideas helpful.
(Groom) ______________ and (Bride) _______________, we are all
privileged on this special day by being asked by the two of you to participate
in this very significant event--your wedding ceremony. We are honored and
blessed by being able to be here to share in your love and to be able to
extend our love to you. The love of All-That-Is and the spirit of togetherness
felt here today make this, your wedding day, a very auspicious occasion.
Let us be still for an instant and know that the love of All-That-Is is always with
us--we need not call upon it but to call upon ourselves to be receptive to it.
Let us be open to Love as we are reminded that Love, which creates us, is
what we are.
(The following portion, addressing the significance of nudity, can be
inserted into most standard wedding ceremonies.)
That we are here nude today seems proper and fitting…
(If there appears to be some discomfort among non-nudists guests, a
humorous statement can be added here taking advantage of the term
“fitting.” Humor can often break the ice and help people laugh and relax.
An example follows.)
...and I use the term ‘fitting’ loosely, however I do not mean ‘loosely fitting’ to
nudists, that, of course, that would be a contradiction since nothing seems
‘loose fitting’ to most nudists.
(Smiling) In any event, it does seem appropriate that we are here today nude
to witness and celebrate the marriage of
(Groom) ______________ and (Bride) _____________. It is appropriate
for two reasons: First, the original vows between many couples, that is the
promises made privately between the two of them which ultimately bring
them to the marriage alter, are often shared during a moment of intimacy--
while nude. It somehow seems fitting, then, that the vows exchanged publicly
before friends, relatives and witnesses be made in a similar state.
However, the second reason why it seems proper that we are here today,
unclothed, maybe much more significant. Standing here naked before God
and before each other, in all our glory, baring it all so to speak, can be
thought of as a metaphor for baring our souls, for hiding nothing and for
being all that we are.
(To bride and groom) Certainly (Groom) ____________and (Bride)
____________, in getting to know each other well enough to want to enter
into marriage, you, no doubt, have bared your souls to one another, more
than once. And no doubt, as your life together continues to unfold, the
relationship, in order to survive and grow, will require of you to continually
bare your souls to each other, to be totally honest with one another.
Sometimes painful, other times a bit uncomfortable, but always worthwhile, it
will be necessary to ‘hide nothing’ if the relationship is, indeed, to grow
deeper. So let their memory of our nudity on this your wedding day be a
reminder to you, as well as to us, of the freedom and bliss that can be
experienced by being honest with ourselves, with each other and with our
(End of nudity portion)
Marriage has been described as the best and most important relationship
that can exist between two human beings; the construction of their love and
trust into a single growing energy of spiritual life. Marriage is a commitment
to togetherness that requires daily attention if the benefits of the
togetherness are to be reaped. Yet marriage is also a nurturing matrix in
which two individuals can continue to expand and develop, so they can fulfill
their individual destinies and offer their gifts to the world. In this view the
focus is not so much on the couple and what they undertake together, but
more on the power of the individuals and what they have to contribute through
their lives, and how their union serves to enlarge and develop each of them.
Let us read from The Prophet on marriage:
“You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore.
You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days.
Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.
Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
“Fill each other’s cup but drink not from the same cup.
Give one another your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they may quiver with the
“Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.”
While this view of marriage may appear on the surface to be an unromantic
vision of love, it is a view that holds a relationship in the highest spiritual
regard--a holy relationship, if you will--for it has as its underlying assumption
that our passing through time and space is not at random, that each of us is
alive for an important purpose and that our encounters with each other are
holy encounters. Marriage then, enhances that capacity for individual
participation, contribution and fulfillment.
Expression of Intent
(Groom) ____________, knowing the joys of marriage but also its
challenges and responsibilities, do you agree to take (Bride) ___________
to be your wedded wife, and do you intend to love honor and cherish her in
accordance with the will and purpose of your highest calling?
(Answer, “I do.”)
And (Bride) __________, knowing the joys of marriage but also its
challenges and responsibilities, do you agree to take (Groom)
___________ to be your wedded husband, and do you intend to love, honor
and cherish him in accordance with the will and purpose of your highest
(Answer, “I do.”)
Exchange of Vows
Please hold hands and (Groom) ____________, repeat after me “(Bride)
____________, I give myself to you as your husband to love you; to work
with you and to play with you; to laugh with you and to cry with you; to sing
and pray with you; and to be your friend, your companion and your lover so
long as it serves our highest good.”
And (Bride) ___________, repeat after me “(Groom)___________, I give
myself to you as your wife to love you; to work with you and to play with you;
to laugh with you and to cry with you; to sing and pray with you and to be your
friend, your companion and your lover so long as it serves our highest good.”
Blessing of Rings
May we have the rings? May these rings be blessed as the symbol of this
affectionate unity. These two lives are now joined in one unbroken circle.
Wherever they go, may they always return to one another in their
togetherness. Through this marriage, may (Groom) ____________ and
(Bride)____________ find in each other and in themselves the love from
which we were all created. May they grow in understanding, compassion and
purpose. May the home which they establish be such a place that many will
find there a friend. May these rings on their fingers symbolize the spirit of
love in their hearts.
Exchange of Rings
(Handing ring to groom) (Groom) ____________, in placing this ring on
(Bride) __________’s finger, repeat after me “(Bride) __________, I give
you this ring as a pledge of my love and as a symbol of our marriage.”
(Handing ring to bride) (Bride) ____________, in placing this ring on
(Groom) ____________’s finger, repeat after me “(Groom) ___________, I
give you this ring as a pledge of my love and as a symbol of our marriage.”
In as much as (Groom) __________ and (Bride)__________, standing here
together, (naked) before God and these witnesses, have consented in
marriage; have pledged their faith and declared their marriage by giving
each other a ring, and now are joined in mutual esteem and devotion, I as an
ordained minister and by the power vested in me by the State, pronounce
that they are husband and wife.
May all that you have already become, which has brought you to this day and
all that you will become as a result of it, be a demonstration of your divine
origin and purpose. May this marriage bring you beautifully and steadfastly
into the presence of yourselves, one another and your Creator. May your life
together be happy, fulfilling all that you are.
I present Mr. And Mrs. ____________________.
LESS-ONS FOR TRUTH
Reclaiming Acceptance of our Original State