Bathing can have many connotations in different cultures. Different people on different occasions take a bath for different reasons. While some take a bath for hygienic reasons, some do it as a form of therapy or relaxation. Bath is regularly used as a form of decontamination, usually with some chemicals, against biological, chemical and other threats. It can be a part of celebration, as in many parts of Australia, America and the Mediterranean. It can be a social ritual in many parts of the world, as the sauna culture of present day Finland or ancient Rome. In parts of Russia bathing is used as a protection against betrayal – nudity bares all secrets and threats. In hot countries people bathe for keeping cool; in cold countries people bathe to keep warm. Bathing, in all cultures, is a precondition of beautification, and is a necessary act on important occasions, like a festival or a wedding.
Regardless of the reason and occasion for bathing, a bath is always conducive to better hygiene. While the knowledge of germs came very late, the benefits of bath were known since ancient times. In many cultures till today, bath is considered to remove diseases, and scare away evil spirits. As an act of purgation, it signifies the start of a new life – as in the dip in holy rivers in parts of India. Most cultures have their whole traditions regarding bath.
In modern times, while many of these traditions remain valid, bath as an event has been commercialized. This has resulted in better hygiene around the world. Various bath accessories, from bathroom fittings and bath tubs, to various soaps, lotions, fragrances and oils as condiments of bathing are available to address all aspects and needs of bathing. Sauna baths of Scandinavia, and Ayurveda baths of Kerala are famous around the world. We might not give much thought to the simple act of bathing, however, bathing remains an important part of all cultures and the economy. In this section of 01webdirectory, we provide links to an assortment of bathing resources.