Free hugs and the beauty of human touch

people and relationships, society

I just learned from BLADAM member Flathead in the Netherlands that there’s a worldwide movement involving Free Hugs.  I just watched a few snippets, and this just totally made my day! 😀

It also brings to mind some thoughts I shared in an early blog entry (”Non-sexual Healin’” )

[…] It was then that I realized how much the whole concept of touch means to me and likely many of my Lindy Hop crazy friends. There’s such a comfort and warmth in—if you’ll forgive the modified Moulin Rouge reference—holding someone and being held in return.

At least in my case (and I suspect, for most others as well), this is all not really about sex or even necessarily flirting. As a heterosexual fella, I still enjoy hugging my friends regardless of their gender, and I likewise appreciate being a follower in Lindy Hop, even with guys.

Sure, there’s sometimes an underlying sensuality in dancing, especially when blues-dancing with someone you are attracted to from the way they look or the way they dance, and so on. But I still think that the overall non-sexual pleasure of touch is one of the leading factors that contributes to folks’ joy in dancing, and this also highlights just how much closeness our American society often lacks.

In much of Europe and Latin America, for instance, there seems to be less perceived overlap between friendly touching and sexual overtures, and I really like and respect that. When I lived in Europe, I found that I was encouraged to give and receive friendly hugs or even snuggle with others without ulterior motives or expectations.

Anyway, thanks, Flathead, for the neat link and good feelings :-D.

22 comments… add one
  • Graham Jun 3, 2007

    Huzzah for hugs! Thanks for sharing.

  • see, people talk about sex in SL all the time. who needs such a cold machine world if you can warm virtual hugs out here…  😉

  • Harith Jun 5, 2007

    Adam!
    I wish you get all the hugs you need 😀

    However, its time to tell us more about the latest improvements within Google Webmaster Guidlines

  • Angela Jun 8, 2007

    Touch is very important I point you to the film Pulp Fiction directed to Quinten Tartino and in the film John Travolta has a coversation about some rubbing the fet of another man s wife and the husband thru him out of the window because of the foot rub. unwanted touch can even be worse so be careful it is always good to ask before touching anything that is not yours or another person.

  • Harith Jul 9, 2007

    Hey Adam,

    Is Matt keeping you very busy or something 🙂

    Long time no post, how come?

  • Adam Jul 11, 2007

    Hey Harith,

    He’s always keeping me busy, but in a good way!  If I weren’t earning my keep in Googleland, I’d feel bad amidst so many hardworkers 😉

    But I can’t blame it all on Matt or the big G!  I’m also:
    – Looking for a new apartment
    – Preparing for a big talent show
    – Planning personal trips to Louisville, Caracas, and Frankfurt coming up

    I do often feel bad for neglecting my blog (and my photos, and my music compositions, and and and)… but my friends ‘n’ family gotta come first.  Especially my friends nearby, who (getting this back on topic) could often use hugs 😀

    Anyway Harith—and other kind commenters above—thanks for chiming in!  And hopefully I’ll soon have at least a bit new online to share! 😀

  • Peter Aug 12, 2007

    I think it is rather important to be able to hug a person not because you feel actracted to that person but because you like her in a very friendliy way. It makes the day a lot warmer to everyone…

  • Steve Nov 6, 2007

    I too like to visit Europe because of the freedom to express yourself and besides everyone likes to give and get a hug.

  • Lynne Nov 20, 2007

    Human touch is the basis for all happiness. Without the ability to express ourselves physically, it would almost be impossible to survive. (and i dont mean sexually), just the warmth of another human being and the ambient energy that can be experienced with something as basic as hug.

  • Marlin Dec 11, 2007

    Nothing brightens my day more then a nice big hug in the morning when I first wake up, it does seem to get the blood flowing better. I myself have never had a problem with hugging strangers. The people here in Seattle are pretty cool about it as well, although some like to get a little to friendly. Anyway, nice post, this was a good reminder for me.

  • Ryan Guides Dec 20, 2007

    A hug says, I care, a kiss says I love you 🙂

  • Jason Carparz Dec 29, 2007

    Hugs are extremely underrated now-a-days.  Here’s my hug to all of you 🙂

  • Motivator Feb 10, 2008

    I wonder if you have heard about some writings before that hugs can be a medical cure?.I have read it I think in chicken soup for the soul if not mistaken. I think giving away free hugs can be healthy.

  • China SEO Feb 18, 2008

    in Europe hugging is quite common, especially among teens and younger adults. here in China I have never really experienced that.

  • James Feb 19, 2008

    It’s shows the strong relation between two person.
    It’s should not be taken as a wrong way.
    Hugs is the name of trust.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • Deane Feb 24, 2008

    Actually many of psychiatrist today are convinced that hugging is a miracle medicine that can help emotional and physical problems. They say that hugging can cure depression so it is indeed a must for us to at least give a hug to those who are depressed. The best medical advice is four hugs a day—one at breakfast, lunch,
    dinner, and bedtime.

  • Lance Mar 3, 2008

    Love for each other in hearts will more effective and give pleasure than a physical hugs,
    what you say?

  • Dan Jenson Mar 23, 2008

    You may be amazed at the recent research that has been completed about hugs and non sexual healing involved in human touch. I stumbled upon a book called “untouched” and it has a ton of info that people would never think about, with research to back it up. It basically reinforces a lot of the info that is discussed at our massage school – I think you would enjoy it.
    thanks for sharing the love!

  • Jose Mar 25, 2008

    Hugs is show off their love, true love never requires any physical touch.
    You won’t find in any great love story the matter discussed on physical relation.
    True love always remains untouched and for that no one need to read any book to understand what it does mean.

  • pcheing Apr 1, 2008

    Hugs are such an easy way to feel better about themselves, and just let people let go. Thanks for the link.

  • Hugs is a feeling of love that describes the natural relationship between two individuals.

  • Terry Metcalfe May 25, 2010

    A hug offers much more than just a gesture it shows love, feeling and provides a bond between each other.

What do you think?