Having lived for more than 6 years in the land of a thousand lakes, I came to cherish and appreciate the Sauna ritual, especially during the winter months. With temperatures raging from 0 to -40 degrees Celcius, sauna is a necessary part in the Finnish lifestyle – adopted by many expatriates as well.
A traditional Finnish sauna – at least from my point of view – is a place to relax, envelop silence and bond with family and friends. When I first came here I found it very weird that the total nakedness, especially in mixed (men/women) saunas is not only not frowned upon, but on the contrary, it is highly recommended. Unlike in many other cultures (including mine), where nakedness is not accepted, in the Finnish culture, being naked in the sauna is completely ok, as it helps you embrace your body and be one with nature. The way that I see it, all people are born naked, so there is no reason to feel embarrassed about one’s body, no matter how imperfect it might be.