slave Namaste’s Keynote Beyond Leather

I’m very honored to be the Keynote speaker today –I’d like to Thank Sir Top and slave bonnie for asking me, and to Thank my Master for His permission. This may indeed be the briefest Keynote you have ever heard…LOL

A few weeks ago I was listening to a Jewish elder expound on how Lobsters grow. So for those of you who do not know – when it’s time for a Lobster it leave it’s shell it begins to feel uncomfortable. That discomfort signals the Lobster to grow another shell and shed the old one. As the elder was speaking he brought up the idea that when we as humans are in growth – we like the lobster experience that same discomfort how we RESPOND to the discomfort is what is different. Instead of beginning to grow a new shell and shed the old- we seek out various ways to keep ourselves comfortable in the old space.

We are the only living beings on the planet that do not naturally make space for our own growth.

Growth is challenging. It’s not pretty. It’s raw and tender by turns. It’s terrifying. And yet it is also inevitable. The only alternative to growth is death.

Every month many new people find these beloved shores and every month many of our elders and more seasoned members leave. Our community is in a state of extreme flux. However one thing that we do know is that this discomfort is a sign of growth and it is how we respond to this growth that truly matters.

One of our guiding ideas is to be all candles and no darkness (well maybe a bit of darkness….lol) In the exploration of this I invite you to begin to go one a journey into 7 Principles or candles which – when adopted by the Leather and BDSM communities – can help us to understand and co-exist. The thing about this is in order for these things to be EFFECTIVE they must be applied- not universally – but individually. See its easy to see what someone else should, or could do with these principles. It is much more challenging – but also much more EFFECTIVE to ask the question What does this mean for ME” and “Is there anything here for me” –

 

  1. The world is what you think it is – In Leather!

When I first heard someone tell a new leather person that they could define leather however they wanted to- I was offended – this was not the leather I was taught. This was not he Leather I had grown to love, respect and identify as. When I began to sit with this idea I realized that under it was a deep fear. A fear that the things that I held dear could in some way be diluted or diminished by what others did. I grew past that when I began to understand that it is EACH persons job to speak thier truth. Each elder, each seasoned leather veteran. Each person who represents a sub group, a title, a household – speaking their truth allows those who are new to our fair culture to find the notes that hold the most resonance. For some it’s low protocol for some high. For some it’s traditional and for others progressive. For some power exchange and others stand alone kink. The beauty of this lifestyle lies in the ability of each of us to create our world – or to find our home planet among a constellation of stars – each beautiful in it’s own right.

Our perception is both our observation and our interpretation of what we observe.

 

  1. There are no Limits- In Leather

Think about it. When this first began as a “community” it was hidden, secret, coded. Now kinky things are sold at the mall. High schoolers walk around with collars on and know all about kink (I should know I have raised a number of teens!). You can find books about power exchange right next to the Joy of Sex. No longer relegated to the darkness kink is found right up front at the Sunday matinee. While it is natural for our first inclination to be The Horror!! The Loss!!! When we really think of it – this is all pointing to one thing- there are no limits in Leather. If we as older Leather people can learn anything from TNG we can learn that Leather isn’t the scary specter it once was at least not to vanilla people. Which is a bit of a mind fuck – because rather than us being concerned about scaring the vanillas – it is we who are now being invited to shed our fear – in the form of shedding our limitations. Where have you been hiding? Where have you been afraid to express your truth even in your relationship? Where have you – even in this community – been living a lie? Releasing our limitations is first and foremost about letting go of the hold they have on us- so we can give our new kinklings permission to do the same.

 

  1. Energy Flows where Attention goes- In Leather

Our attention matters- because the things that we pay attention to the most receive that energy and GROW… they can flourish like a bountiful garden or they can swell with infection like a cancer. It all depends on what we are making the center of our attention. When I first came into the community – the center of our attention seemed to be hot sex, sizzling scenes, and finding out where we fit based upon our longings and desires. After all it took us so long and many of us fought so hard to get here. Many of us lost friends, family, church , jobs because of our proclivities – so when we FINALLY got here… our focus was firmly set on what we wanted. Well – the times as they say are a-changing. Now – as I said earlier – it is easy to find and express your kink. You needn’t get the buy in of others or even be a part of the “community” to proclaim your identity on social media, start a group on meet-up, or your very own wordpress website. Heck you can self publish your own manual of kink on Amazon even if you’ve NEVER played. This is a LOT of change in a very short period of time. And with this change comes chaos – and it’s that giant squeaky wheel that gets the oil of our attention and therefore our energy. Many munches are taking the form of a town hall meets PTA meeting. All of the energy is going to discussing, abuse, political activism, who’s oppressing whom, and the latest war of the groups. Now I’m not saying these things aren’t important. They are – however we would do well to take time to do a self check to see how much of your attention is going to the negative elements as opposed to the positive. Where is your attention? Believe that – it is also where your energy will go as well. If we spend all of our attention chasing the demons around every corner- it is any wonder we have so little energy left for a hot scene, cultivating meaningful relationships, or creating the resources that our community needs such as housing for our elderly.

 

  1. Now is the Moment of Power- in Leather!

I have spent a lot of time with leather elders, hearing their stories – enjoying the time getting rooted and grounded in our history. The thing is while yesterday holds many warm and fuzzy memories and while tomorrow holds a bright future it is NOW that holds the power. Now we are determining what traditions are precious enough for us to pass down. Now we are making tomorrows memories, now we are writing the book that will become a part of history. And that’s the paradox – in order to stay in the now you have to allow yourself the fluidity and power to have ALL of you present – NOW. What leather woman, man, beast or other are you NOW? That’s what counts. What kind of friend? Master? Slave? Dom? Sub? Leader, teacher? NOW matters. So often many of us are hyper focused on what we WANT our community to be- based on an ideal perfection that is simply impossible based upon the flawed and human beings that inhabit it. And yet- all I can do- and what I MUST do – what I hold the responsibility to do and what is the most beneficial thing to do is to be the BEST me that I can be – NOW.

 

  1. To love is to be Happy with.

I hear all the time from people that they Love Leather, they love the community, they love their Master, slave, leather family etc; And while I don’t disbelieve them – I do wonder if we understand that Love is about Happiness. Many of us grew up in families or cultures where love meant suffering. Love meant sacrifice. Love meant pain and hardship – and so the more we devote ourselves to something that causes us stress, pain, suffering and more the more we feel like this is an expression of love. But what if – we’re wrong? What is love really is about not how much obligation and sacrifice we can have but how HAPPY we are? What if as a slave my love for my Owner is known by how happy he makes me? What if I show my love for Leather by telling stores not of my suffering- but of my joy? Yes the community began in a somewhat hostile environment but we must begin to feed ourselves a different fuel if we have any hope of being healthy. Healed. Whole. That fuel is our Happiness.

 

  1. All power comes from within – in leather

There are two people who basically are the rulers of this community. I know – you’re a bad ass and no one rules you- but these two people are reall the puppet masters behind the scenes pulling all the strings. No – I’m not talking about “the man” – I’m talking about WE and They. We (LOL) have a tendency to think of what WE need to do and about what THEY need to stop doing. When we talk about what we all need to do we- each of us- automatically give the space of our power away and make ourselves unable to act. WE- as a community – don’t need to get rid of predators- because when we say “We” that makes it’s someone else’s responsibility. But if I say “I” then it’s MY responsibility. The same is true when we think of THEY. Don’t talk about how THEY are destroying the community – talk about the specific person that you saw do the destructive act- or better yet talk TO them. Don’t talk about how THEY are disrespectful or THEY have no relevance- talk about the person who disrespected YOU– or better yet talk to THEM. This is as they say “Grown folks” conversation. And it’s time for all of us to grow up by assuming our power and having some long overdue conversations.

 

  1. Effectiveness is the measure of truth- in Leather

Our community is growing. It’s changing – as are we all. We live in a time where our community is no longer within a 50 mile radius of our homes- but it is now global. And we’re still trying to figure it out. How do I form genuine connection? Who can I trust? Where do I fit? What method is the right one for me? Heck – what Identity is the right fit? This principle- that effectiveness is the measure of truth is one that is deeply embedded in my Masters Household. We live by it. Whenever we are doing something – be it business, child rearing, or our M/s – we ask the question periodically – but ESPECIALLY if we are considering if something needs to be changed- how effective is this? So the question is – how do we determine effectiveness? We look at a few key areas- Is it based in love or fear? Do we feel expansive or contracted by this? Is it growth or mere consumption? Does it elicit my power or invite victimization? All of which comes down to- does this benefit my evolution as a HUMAN? Yes- I know it’s easy to forget but before we were leather – we were human. We were flesh and blood, emotion and spirit with longings and desires. Our desire for connection is what brought us to this space. And whether we know it or not it is the longing for that –connection- that we all have in common or we would not be here. When I came to this principle I realized why t held such weight in our household- because indeed all the other principles can be summed up in this. The effectiveness of our actions to powerfully and profoundly connect us to ourselves, our Beloveds, our Humanity and to one another is the measure of our truth – In Leather.

 

Thank you

 

Attention Counts – pt. 1

As I was cleaning out my email account I came across a topic that Master and I studied about 6 or 7 years ago.

Civility.

I had begun writing a post to use as a series of topics for a Local Leadership group we were running at the time. Interestingly we closed the group due to incivility – and yet these beautiful tools still apply.

When I looked at them I saw them as incredibly apropos not only to governments and social groups but also RELATIONSHIPS including the Power Exchange variety.

My hope is that I’ll be able to post my musings and insights on how to apply each of the 25 Rules of Civil Conduct taken from P.M. Fornis Work “Choosing Civility” (It’s worth every cent. Buy it. Go ahead I’ll wait)

So the First Principle is:

 Pay Attention

kitten attention

I can think of no more important tool for a slave to have than the ability to Pay Attention to his/her Owner.

The principle form that the work of love takes- is attention ~M. Scott Peck

Regardless of if you consider romantic love to be a part of your M/s dynamic or not- I don’t think any of us would deny that slavery itself is a work of love. This may be spiritual love, transcendent love, love of ones place or position, love of service or surrender, love of feeling the force of another’s will over your own.

This type of love is one that is not often understood by many. Those who are fed by autonomy do not often understand the symbiotic nature of this dynamic.

And that symbiosis is why it requires us to pay attention.

In the early days of the dynamic the Masters Will is like a strong spice that you’re not accustomed to. It’s everywhere and often easily identified. It pushes you outside your comfort zone. It demands from you more than you fantasized about.  During this stage paying attention is often the height of your obedience . You can’t intuit or get it perfect because you’re learning. Often the slaves attention is focused- but far more on themselves and their ability to be a “good slave” than on the Master. This is an easy mistake to make and will often lead to far more pain and suffering than is necessary.  Because of this focus on self and the learning curve its easy to feel like failure is innately part of enslavement.  It’s not dear heart. Gently turn your attention away from you – and towards your Owner. Allow His/Her will to be you compass, your axel, your touchpoint.  Devote your attention in Their direction. It makes all the difference.

In the years of 5+ (this may take longer if you don’t live together, or depending on your Masters style of Mastery) you have most likely internalized the Masters Will – this is where paying attention is something you have to bring up and out. It is far too easy to become complacent. The Master speaks and the slave obeys slowly. Or the slave obeys automatically – but without attention. The word in this time is present. Your ability to pay attention via the ability to be fully present in the moment to the Masters voice, mannerisms, movement, breath. To maintain that tension and cultivate it is what renews the passion and sustains your devotion. Yes I know how to make the coffee correctly- but can I do it not just technically perfect- but with devoted presence. (I promise that cup of coffee tastes better) – At this point you’re going for nuance. A person with a refined palette can taste the differences between Himalayan sea salt, and fleur de sel, but it requires paying attention. This is how refinement is created.

Questions for consideration and cultivation:

  • How much attention can I pay today?
  • What am I spending my Masters resources on in the form of giving it my attention?
  • Where was I MOST present today?
  • Where was I least present?
  • How long is my attention span (How long can Master or someone else speak before I start thinking of other things, or forming a response)?
  • When I paid attention what did I notice that I didn’t notice before?

In submission and surrender to Him,

~slave Namaste

3 Ways The Loyal Opposition is killing your Power Exchange

Screenshot 2014-10-12 22.25.08In parliamentary systems of government, The Loyal Opposition is a term applied collectively to the opposition parties in the legislature to indicate that the non-governing parties may oppose the actions of the sitting cabinet while remaining loyal to the source of the government’s power.

In many power exchange relationships, I’ve observed a similar phenomenon – that the person subject to the power (most typically the slave or submissive) is often allowed tremendous latitude and is permitted, or even expected to oppose the will of the Master on a philosophical, or emotional level  – as long as they are compliant to the wishes of the Master at the end of the day.

The reason why the concept of The Loyal Opposition (TLO) makes sense in a parliamentary system of government is that it allows for any minority party within the government to actively oppose a specific course of action without their ultimate loyalty to the crown or system of government being in question due to their actions. The concept allows for the dissent necessary for a functioning democracy without the fear of being accused of treason.

When I’ve asked those that practice this form of power exchange what the deal is, answers vary – most of the time the Master or Dominant explains that they have adopted a Commander In Chief type of role in the relationship that permits or tolerates a TLO presence. Some indicate that this approach is their nod to giving the slave or submissive a measure of ‘freedom’…others believe that one can never truly know another persons internal state – what the slave thinks and feels is their own business (and cannot be measured) vs. that which they actually DO on the other hand, which can be measured and at the end of the day is more important than how the slave feels or what they think in the privacy of their own heads.

I believe that the Master has both authority and responsibility for the slave and for outcomes in the relationship.  I also believe that the M/s dynamic is intentionally NOT a democracy.  Anticipating, and being tolerant of occasional resistance is different than encouraging and supporting open opposition. Believing that they are the same thing will eventually put the hurt on your relationship.  After witnessing a number of P/e and M/s relationships crash and burn, here’s why I believe TLO is a terrible philosophy to adopt or allow within a power exchange relationship.

1. TLO encourages laziness. Power exchange takes work, plain and simple – especially in the early stages of a relationship. Doing the work of a master involves being conscious, being present and intentionally putting yourself in the best position possible to receive out of the relationship that which is internally fulfilling to you.  – but that’s only one part of the equation. The other part is that the person that willingly places themselves in a subordinate or surrendered position – the person that aspires to serve or to be a slave also brings a set of needs and desires into the relationship that are as precious, as relevant and necessary to the success of the dynamic as that of the Master. Some masters mistakenly believe that the best way to honor such desires is to offer such a person that which they themselves consider most precious – the privilege of autonomy, the ability to self-direct.  So they are well-meaning when they ‘allow’ the slave to oppose them, to continually assert their independance and to play the role of The Loyal Opposition.

I have to say this – and I cant emphasize this strongly enough….. if this is you; STOP DOING THIS SHIT IMMEDIATELY. YOU ARE KILLING YOUR RELATIONSHIP AND YOU DONT EVEN REALIZE IT.

Think about it.

That which is most precious to you – is TOXIC to your slave or submissive.

Not toxic in the literal sense – they arent going to expire from an overdose of Mastery-ness…..but you ARE planting seeds that when fully grown will be the opposite of the surrender you desire.

It certainly doesnt work the other way round; What if she had the power to offer YOU the opportunity to experience that which SHE feels is most precious to her? The privilege of surrendering and being of service!!! YUM!!!! (did you throw up a little in your mouth?) Im always amazed at the numbers of Masters and Dominants who consistently do this and are then mystified as to why the length of their relationships are measured in months, not years.

Moreover, a master that tells the slave or submissive ‘Feel however you want, just make sure you ultimately comply with my wishes, places the power exchange in the relationship on auto-pilot, or even worse, places the slave or submissive in the dubious position of mastering themselves.  Dont get me wrong – I LOVE surrender…but that beautiful garment is tailor made for my namaste alone in our relationship. I have no desire to try it on for size and I categorically refuse to put my cover on her head even in jest to see how cute she’d look as a little Master. Screenshot 2014-10-13 00.25.15

DO NOT CROSS THE STREAMS!!!!

2.  Its a waste of valuable resources – Entrainment in the biomusicological sense refers to the synchronization of organisms to an external rhythm, usually produced by other organisms with whom they interact socially. Entrainment in the power exchange sense describes the phenomenon of the Master intentionally and consistently synchronizing the actions of the slave or submissive with the Masters will, most often through repetition. For example, a speech protocol that is performed every day, multiple times a day will be more effective in deepening the power exchange relationship than an elaborate ritual that is performed twice a year.  That said, Masters that have a TLO friendly power exchange relationship tend to eschew the ‘bells and whistles’ of power exchange and often fail to understand how protocols, rituals and other rites of the power exchange dynamic can be powerful allies in deepening and strengthening the bond between Master and slave.

3. It compromises alignment of will – A fundamental priniciple of our dynamic is what I have coined “Alignment of Will”.  My slaves will must align with mine.  It is not good enough for her to merely obey, and to give the external “Yes Sir”. I must have the internal alignment – that internal “Yes Sir”- as well. That internal “Yes” can not be faked. It can not be “acted”-  it’s either there or its not…and when it isn’t there, I know it and I generally won’t rest until I have it.  Obedience is wonderful, but obedience without internal alignment is unsatisfying to me on an energetic level.  I want her to not just comply with my wishes or agree ‘in principle’ with my philosophies – instead it is my desire that she is to feel as I feel concerning the things that I desire most.

At the end of the day, why deny yourself and your charge the sustainable pleasure of using as many resources as possible to reinforce and deepen the relationship? As Masters and slaves we are attracted to our respective roles in the relationship because of the pleasure we receive from the experience.  If this relationship style did not please me in some way it would be pointless to pursue. It pleases me to give directives as much as it pleases my slave to be both the recipient, and the instrument of my will. Her response to my leadership gladdens my heart, the way she talks to me in respect and love is a constant source of healing and pleasure to me. When she inquires and I tell her how I feel about something – it is a joy to me throughout our discussion to see her work through acquiring an understanding of how I feel about the subject at hand and to then align her will with my own.  These facets of our relationship are precious to me. If I take a hands-off approach to portions of that process and basically leave her to her own devices with respect to how she feels and thinks about my directives and what I feel is important, I deny us both not only the extreme pleasure that the M/s dynamic has to offer, but also negate much of the power of the relationship as well.

There is no room in our relationship for The Loyal Opposition.

I AM His Will

A few weeks ago I was talking with one of my BFF’s – she is also a slave and she said to me “Your life sounds horrible to me”

I laughed and said “Thanks” because I knew what she meant.

My life as  Masters slave is quite different than her life as her owners slave.

Master has a HUGE Vision. Our lives are often busy with periods of do-nothing in between. Even during those “do-nothing” period we’re still very busy with the children, the animals, the local groups and the building of our businesses.

My friends life is more still. No travel. No public speaking.

While we both do not work for anyone outside of our Owners- our lives look different.

This is why I often say that any ideal of what slavery looks like will be a 30,000 foot view- a Template at beast. Because the Reality of living as His (or Hers as the case may be) – will be substantially different.

Long ago when I was a little girl I wanted a little house at the foot of a hill. I envisioned myself living right where a forest turned into non-forested land in a small cottage with a twirl of smoke coming from the chimney. This was not so much literal as symbolic of the sort of simple life I desired.

But I AM His Will.

My Owner desired a lifestyle that is sort of a mixture of Movers and Shakers meets Homestead. LOL We have chickens (we had goats), and children and quietude at our house. We rarely entertain at home. We recycle. I engage in food preservation such as canning and dehydration as well as making much of our own products such as detergent and body butters.  We also travel at least once a month, have cause to dress up in ball gowns and tuxedos from time to time, and speak in front of hundreds if not thousands of people a year. Why? Because this is His Vision

And I AM His Will.

When I say “I am His will” What am I saying.  This is a step further than even the alignment of will that I often write and speak about. Like many things it is a process. For me it is the hearing of His will, the understanding of it as much as I can grok at any one time, the beginning to align externally and internally and eventually – the BECOMING. To internalize it so deeply that there is no place within me where you will not find it.  For some things this has been very easy and taken mere moments for other things – due to the complexity of the idea or worldview, or my flexibility (or inflexibility) in that area – it took longer. Either way it is always the goal.

Some slaves have told me that they find the idea of alignment of will to be so HARD. It seemed so extreme and far more challenging than giving mere compliance. I can understand how the idea initially feels that way – especially when most writings concerning Power Exchange seem to promote an internal rebellion with an external appearance of obedience.  For me though – incongruence is the WORST thing. Behaving one way and Feeling another internally is the height of inauthenticity. And while this is often a PART of the process of alignment of will and becoming the will of a Master- it is not the end point. It should be considered a liminal state not the destination. By becoming His will there is not separation no internal conflict between my wants and desires and His wants and desires. There is a simplicity and peacefulness.   I have also found that by becoming His will – I am spending time studying Him deeply. Seeing if there is anyway where I need micro aligning the way a chiropractor manipulates the spine back into alignment.

I Am His Will.

And it is my honor and pleasure to be so.

In submission and surrender to Him,

~slave namaste

 

Surrender and Grace

surrender woman picture pands

 

 

I believe surrender and grace are inextricably connected.

Often  have heard it spoken of as if they occur simultaneously or if grace brings surrender. I have also heard them used interchangeably as if the are the same.

I believe that order counts and I believe that the act of relinquishing to the Surrendered Life yields a grace that can not be experienced UNTIL you surrender.

By Grace I’m referring both to Favor and beauty of form and movement.

It’s something that goes beyond the technical movement. It is found in the sublime contentment that only comes when you know who you are and where you belong.

It follows the giving up and the ceasing from struggle.

It comes from leaping and not looking back.

It is about timing and fluidity. It can not be rushed and checked off of our to-do lists. It can not be found in our tendency towards intellectualism. It must be lived. Much as bread must be kneaded and then allowed to rise – in trust and a patience that what needs to occur will.

There is a courage that is produced in this state – and this courage brings a stateliness. A sense of nobility.

A Grace.

I can recall a Domina telling Master after He had changed my name, we had been within our dynamic about 2 or 3 years- that she had known be by my other name – and she struggled to see me as the same person.

Not because I looked outwardly different – but because my energy was entirely different.  She called it Regal.

Master recalled it to me and I remember blushing and not really understanding until later what she saw.

This is why I believe in 2 types of surrender. surrender (little s) hat is action specific and Surrender (big S) that is transformative to the blood and bone of the slave.

This is the Surrender that births Grace.

In submission and Surrender to Him,

~slave namaste

 

Understanding Alignment of Will

Today I was responding to a thread on Fetlife (Stop the presses…LOL)  discussing Passive and Active Mastery.

“As a type: I see Passive Mastery as the a style in which the Master is the Facilitator for the slaves development, service, and surrender etc; The dynamic is very slave focused.

As a stage: Passive Mastery also occurs frequently when a dynamic has been in place for a few years and the slave knows the required actions and behaviors to take and does so without involvement by the Master.

As a type: Active Mastery is a style in which the Master is Director of the slaves slaves development, service and surrender. The dynamic is very Master focused.

As a stage: Active Mastery occurs in the beginning of the dynamic when the Master is training the slave as to the appropriate behaviors and actions to take. It also occurs later on in the dynamic when the Master is teaching the slave a new skill, expressing His/or Her preceding Will, or life has offered something for which Passive Mastery is no longer effective.”

 

I look forward to writing more about Active and Passive Mastery later (It’s not a question of good or bad, just different styles and different stages). What really jumped out at me this morning was the idea of the “preceding” word.

Most who know us know that our dynamic is based upon what Master has coined as “Alignment of Will”. My will must align with His.  It is not good enough for me to merely obey, and to give the external “Yes Sir”. I must have the internal alignment – the internal “Yes Sir”- as well. The internal “Yes” can not be faked. It can not be “acted”-  it’s either there or not. And Masters can TELL when it’s not.  It’s why the slave can seem to be compliant and obedient and the Master still be irritated. It’s why outsiders shouldn’t judge and step into a persons relationship- because you really don’t know what He/She is trying to teach that slave or where they are going in their dynamic.

While we’ll be talking about the stages of the M/s dynamic more deeply in an upcoming class- I’m thinking a bit on how alignment of will and the “preceding word” work in our M/s dynamic.  Master is a very complex Man. He’s not a creature of Habit, unless He is. He doesn’t want anything the same way all the time – unless He does.  The worse thing possible for me to do would be to confuse learned obedience and resignation to a current directive with alignment of will. Why? Because then when He changes direction – I’ll struggle MORE because my will was not aligned in the first place.

The idea of the Preceding Word comes from a Sacred Text.

And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.” Deut. 8:3

The idea being that the Divine allowed man to be hungry so that we would be given food from the Divine directly- growing to understand that it’s not really about the food- it’s about the word that is preceding.  It is only THAT which truly feeds.

You can have bread without the Preceding Word – but if you have the preceding word you will ALWAYS have bread.

In the same way you can have Obedience without Alignment of Will – but if you have Alignment of will you will always have Obedience as well.

Frequently it’s easy to confuse the two.  Alignment of Will and Obedience can look the same. In fact I’m not suggesting that the words themselves have completely different meaning. I see Alignment of Will as a way of going through the world and obedience is an action taken. HOWEVER, if the obedient action is not take from the place of alignment of will – when the Master changes direction the slave does not follow – she stumbles, sometimes she sits on the floor and has a tantrum.

Alignment of Will is ongoing- NOT situational.

That is often where the pedal meets the metal. With the Preceding Word.  This is where the slavery becomes active. This is why as a slave I can not rest on my laurels. This is why I am never “done” – this is why the journey IS the destination. It is mine to always be prepared and listening for the Preceding word that comes my Masters mouth. To never simply seek the bread (directive, protocol, or service)  that feeds me and my slavery TODAY but to stay actively connected to the SOURCE of  tangible expressions – which is HIM.

The Bread  without Him would eventually get dry, but He is water, alive and fresh and pure. May my ears always attend to His preceding word.

In submission and surrender to Him,

~slave namaste

Deep Listening for Surrender

I love my meanderings because they often lead me to wonderful and diverse concepts.

Especially my meanderings into cultural distinction and diversity.

Recently I cam across the concept of “Dadirri”  – this is similar to what we call contemplation but MORE.

Within the indigenous peoples of Australia- Dadirri is how the young learn – not through the asking of questions – but through the practice of a deep listening. By watching, waiting – then acting.

When I consider this idea- I find a huge resonance for me as a slave- in part because listening as a skill set has become so precious and scarce.

Within the “lifestyle community” there is a lot more talking and action than there is stillness, watchfulness – listening.

It’s almost as if we have learned to fear silence.

This space shows up often within the realm of slavery – where the focus is often  far more on hugely vocal advocacy for self than on our listening to our inner longings and desires, waiting for the the answers to be offered to us knowing that we need not rush into something, rush into anything – but we can sit… in contemplation. Listening to the sounds of our hearts, paying attention to the longing of our souls, understanding the disappointments and pains that are echoing through our psyche rather than seeking a “quick fix”

When I ask myself how can I embody more Dadirri in my life and slavery- listening closely for my Masters voice and His non-verbal communication.

Never taking a moment, a whisper, and look for granted – but attuning the whole of my being to His essence and expression.

Opening to all that of Himself that He gives me with a look. Allowing my heart to melt as I spend my days in surrender to Him.

Being in wait – without hurry to move into the next thing. But in a calm present place of awareness, thankfulness and joy.

This moment is Sacred.

Dadirri means there is no rushing into the next thing. Where ever I am is exactly where I need to be. I don’t have a box to check off – a magical state  to attain.

No.

I need to be right where I am – because every step along this journey is valuable. Every step is both journey and destination.

I allow surrender to drag me under -not fighting the waves but yielding to them.

I listen – not only for content and information but for emotion and connection.

Life is present in the nuance of the conversation.

Conversation present in the breaths between the words.

I allow the silence and the cracking open to pull me deeper, to immerse me in the surrender to the now.

Timeless – I listen for eternity present in this instant.

I feel the fulness of being present in being His.

In submission and surrender to Him,

slave namaste

Devotion, Spirituality and slavery

I’ve been thinking lately about what I want to write.

Today it came to me.

I want my blog posts to focus on Spirituality and Surrender.

Master and I were having a conversation today and I shared with him.

I do not understand slavery without devotion.

Devotion has become a dirty word.

I realized that I stopped writing because I felt my voice wasn’t relevant anymore.

In today’s community where the only focus on slavery seems to be on negotiation, abuse, predators, sex and the like.

Where is the room for devotion, surrender, connecting to the desires that brought us here in the first place?

And when I deeply consider that  – what brought me here- was my Longing and Desire to surrender, to experience the Will of another actualized in my life and to live devoted to it.

What kept me here was my connection to Spirit.

I can not deny that slavery for me is a deeply Spiritual practice.

I am His devotee and His acolyte.

I am the Priestess and He is the God – or perhaps I become the layperson and He is my Priest.

I am wood consumed in His flames.

I am flame and He is oxygen.

The levels and variations of our entanglement know no limit.

And without my Spirituality- this would not be possible.

Not on this level.

It was my deep inner knowing that not only was I called to be *a* slave but that more specifically I was meant to belong to HIM that kept me when I was confused and things got sticky.

It is the spiritual connection that exceeds the physical and sexual (as delicious as those are).

Devotion.

Affection and dedication.

Not simply lust and obligation. But a spiritual SEEING and KNOWING. At times I feel the Divine loving me through Him and then again the Divine loves Him through me.

What a sacred charge.

What profound exchange.

More on this later…

Of sexual orientation, being feminine, and a Leather slave

I writing about this because it’s been something I’ve had some thoughts around for a good long while now. I make no claims that these things are well organized – in fact they may not be – but they are a reflection of the connective ways that my mind works and some troubling trends I’m noticing in our Beloved Confederacy.

Before I get too far afield here- and get potentially kicked in the face by all the knee jerky responses – I realize that some people come into this and simply have never really had an opportunity to develop the self acceptance that will allow for the expression of their core sexual identity and or orientation. For these people this is where they can truly be who they are.  I’m not speaking about those people.

 

When I first came into the Lifestyle I came in through the “branch” of BDSM – not Leather. Coming through this branch I felt very comfortable being feminine and even saw that it was appreciated and embraced. i met many other feminine slaves who loved being women, sensual and feminine.

 

When I began to identify as Leather – one of the first things I noticed was that in the spheres that I had closest access too – I didn’t see many women like me. I didn’t meet many women who were predominantly hetero-sexual (or flexible) who identified as Leather, slave and as Feminine. In fact in recent years I’ve noticed a somewhat troubling trend in that I observe women coming into leather as feminine and gradually over time becoming bois and asexual – at least in their projected persona.

Something else that I’ve noticed is Het men and women who have been in the lifestyle for long periods of time suddenly changing their sexual orientation within typically 1-2 years of identifying as Leather.  I have a few ideas concerning why this is occurring outside of the reason above.

  1. One reason this may occur is because “true” Leather has been subtly defined by some as Gay Leather – many people who are heterosexual see the best way to be leather, the ONLY “real” way to be leather of any worth is to be GLBT.
  2. Others feel that the best way to be an ally to their GLBT brothers and sisters is beginning to identify as GLBT.  (Although even being bi is no longer enough for women. Bi sexual women are feeling more and more the push to orient as queer as being the more PC thing to do to “reject the oppression of the gender binary” )

While I’m speaking in generalities here – I know that there are more than a few who have found themselves in those groups.

But I want to speak more specifically to being a feminine Leather woman.  Specifically a Leather slave who is also a woman. A very feminine woman. And while I suppose that being a het oriented feminine Leather slave is a bit of a niche- it’s one that I see a number of women walking into and a number of bois and/or de-feminized women walking out of.

I’m sure at this point some will point to Leather girls- and say “what about the Leather girls, they’re feminine” to which I would say – what does it mean when the only option for being feminine, s-type and Leather is to be a girl? All Leather women who are s-types aren’t girls. When we pretend as if they all “could” be, or it’s all the same thing – we dilute and diminish the potency and actualization of that identity.

 

There are traits that are part of being a feminine slave. The way I walk, the way I dress, the facets and aspect of my being that are a delight and of value to my Owner. The places in my self that I cultivate. These all have to do with my being feminine.

I have no desire to diminish or deny these things. Nor do I believe that being Leather requires such.

 

My accentuating and celebrating these facets of who I am is in no way to diminish those who are not as I am. I celebrate any and everyone that has found the joy of self acceptance regardless of what it looks like. This is frankly not about anyone else- it’s about my ability to self express what is true and reflective of me.

 

I have spoken to many feminine slaves who do not identify as Leather – not because they do not feel an affinity for it- but because they do not want to have to masculinize or asexualize themselves. Usually they feel that to even ask the question would cause them  public ridicule.  While I am not the ONLY feminine Leather (mostly het) slave- I will say that we are becoming a rare breed. More and more I see hetero female slaves gaining their Leather “wings” by denouncing their being feminine.

 

I want to encourage those women that you can be Feminine and be Leather. They are NOT mutually exclusive. Being a Feminine Leather slave is a valid identity.

Self Identity is the most important thing. For me that means my identity is about my understanding of and authenticity to my SELF – it’s not about being worried about how others perceive me, accept me, or how they decide I should be.

Sometimes I think that we need to be careful regardless of how we orient and what identity we choose- that we are choosing our identity and orientation based upon our fulfillment and our joy and pleasure- not our pain and fear of non-acceptance.

For instance:

There is a difference between being understated when I go into a Gay Leather Bar as a point of respect and consideration – and detaching myself from my femininity within my Leather identity so that I can be considered “real” by others.

There is a difference in feeling like being a boi, girl, poodle etc; is a reflection of my most authentic self – and choosing those identities because they give me a place to hide my insecurities and self rejection. Am I being true to myself by masculinizing my appearance or am I perhaps coving up my lack of body acceptance with clothing that allows me to hide? Only each person can truly know.

I suppose ultimately the questions we all have to ask are:  Am I using my involvement in this lifestyle as a crutch for all of the myriad of pain, dysfunction and  self loathing I feel – or is this truly the place where I am able to be MOST me.

Is this where I show myself truly or is this the most ideal of masquerades where I’m able to constantly change masks.

 

Food for thought.

 

In submission and surrender to Him,

~slave namaste

Posted with Permission and Direction of Master Obsidian

Slave or Service Oriented Bottom

So today’s topic is recognizing the difference between being a Service Oriented Bottom and being a slave.

First let me say that I don’t think there is anything wrong, lessor, less honorable or less meaningful about being a bottom. When I first came into the Lifestyle being a slave was not something to aspire to. Slaves were considered weak doormats and usually extreme masochists. At some point it changed. Now, no one wants to be a submissive – (because that means being a weak doormat) and everyone wants to be a slave. Go figure. Also being a bottom is often maligned as being less “real” with statements such as “oh, he’s just a bottom” thrown about, which is unfortunate because this Lifestyle serves us better when it is defined by the Freedoms it grants us – not by the bondages we put on each other.

But I digress.

Slave, submissive, bottom – they are all simply descriptors of what is – not creators of what is not. To this end being a bottom in the realm of BDSM is often recognized in general as being on the receiving end of things – when not paired with other descriptors it often contains the unspoken qualifier of “during a specific, normally short period of time” – which is to say all submissives and slaves could be called bottoms, but not all bottoms are submissives or slaves.

That said what we’ve noticed of late is that many people in their reaching for self identification are quick to reach into the identifier “slave” and to ignore the identifier “bottom” even though “slave” does not really fit them. Why? Because while they may enjoy serving; they have a real issue, challenge, limitation when it comes to something foundational to being a slave….

OBEDIENCE

Yes- slavery is all about obedience – not service.

This may come as a shock or a revelation, and it is my hope that some light bulb moments will occur here.

This is not to say that there is anything wrong with service or that slaves don’t serve. We do. I LOVE providing crisp, efficient, beautiful service. Both unseen seamless service and showcase service are delicious to me. When I am serving excellently I’m happy and quite content.

But the performance of service does not make me a slave. My desire to be of service and of use also does not make me a slave – any more than a desire to be used sexually would make me a slave, or a desire to be spanked would make me a slave.

Because many have forgotten that slavery is at it’s essence about obedience – we tend to look at actions and mistake one thing for another.

For instance we’ll look at the quiet demure woman who is sad and not allowed to provide service because her Owner has told her not to, and yet is attempting to sneak and do it anyway and say “See how slavey she is??”

And then look at the more outspoken woman who is sitting next to her Master, engaged in stimulating conversation with Him/Her and assume this person is not a “twue slave” – when in fact her Owner directed her to do so and she’s being obedient.

So here’s the question – does being obedient feel good to you? Really and truly? I’m not just talking about being obedient to the things that feed your kink or sexual proclivities. I’m talking about being obedient to the things that challenge you, that push and pull you? If you have a FABULOUS idea that you just KNOW will make both of your lives AMAZING and He/She says “no” – does being obedient to that, even if it’s uncomfortable and painful – ultimately feel GOOD and fulfill something deep inside of you? If so – you may be a slave.

If you love to serve but when the person you’re in service to requires certain things, makes certain directives, expects certain behaviors or conduct you find yourself saying “Yeah but…” , “If only He understood…..”, “She doesn’t understand that…..”, “I’d obey if only He/She was…..” or anything along those lines – you may want to consider that you may in fact be a service oriented bottom -and there’s nothing wrong with that!

This Lifestyle is fundamentally  all about finding ourselves and then finding the descriptors that fit who we are so that we can communicate our truth succinctly and in ways that others understand. It is my sincere desire that we find our truth and then shine within it brightly – whatever we identify as!