Salome was not a character submissive in nature. She, by and large, was a whirlwind of fury and dominance: her thirst for power, her demanding fortitude, her desire for blood. She ordered the head of John the Baptist on a silver platter simply because he denied her erotic advances. She was a sadist.
The joy of dominance is complemented only by the joy of submission. Salome was blind to this and it caused her demise. In all her dominant glory, she had failed to recognize the beautiful gift in her hands.
In BDSM, which stands for Bondage/Discipline and Sadoism/Masochism, this role-playing fantasy or “sex magick,” as author Claudia Varrin calls it, endows the dominant party with the upper hand. The submissive or “sub” shows their devotion through complete obedience. The sub relinquishes all power because he/she trusts her dominant or “dom.” This beautiful gift of submission is given, never taken.
One must understand, there’s more to it than sex and physical pleasure. It is about the transfer of power. It’s about tapping in to an innate part of oneself, accessing a remote desire to overpower another or to be overpowered.
Everyone, naturally, is both submissive and dominant. We all embody both naughty sides of the BDSM coin. In what percentage, that depends on the person and their relationship(s). Therefore, it is imperative that both subs AND doms understand the responsibility and mindset of the other.
Joy #1: Being a part of a diverse, yet secret society
Anyone can be a sub. One must also remember, who someone is in public doesn’t always match up to who they are in private. Perhaps one is a CEO of an international corporation, rushing back and forth from meeting to meeting, ordering assistants, accountants, or employees around. Perhaps that same person is so dominant in “real life” that they simply don’t find it sexually enticing to be so in the bedroom. That person may find it erotic to be tied up, slapped around, or called names. This person may find it erotically appealing to be humiliated, to be told what to do, to be dehumanized in some way.
The exciting part of this is the invisible society. The fact that there is a plethora of subs and doms and their pleasure-seeking, kinky behaviors will always be in good company. For many, this side of themselves is secret, embarrassing, perhaps slightly shameful. But a dom or sub must find solace in the idea that there are plenty of others just like them. That their world is shared with many. That their mode of sexual pleasure is normal and natural. Whether it’s pain, degradation, humiliation, bondage, etc. IT IS NOT WRONG!
As long as both parties are happy, supported, and of course, it’s all consensual, then sub/dom relationships can be healthy.
Joy #2: Displaying their worthiness
This is one of the main joys of a sub. They portray their value through acts of absolute compliance. The very reason why subs are worthy enough to belong to their dom is complex and different for everyone. Whether it be as simple as doing house chores, to something as extreme as flogging or cutting, the sub never questions or doubts. The sub accepts their situation, eager to please, eager to express their loyalty.
The sub’s only job is to please their dom. They have no other concern in their mind whatsoever. They would do absolutely anything. It’s easy to think that subs are simply “doormats.” Or that they secretly despise themselves and want the degradation out of self-pity and self-loathing. But that is certainly not the case. The sub is aware of what they are offering.
They understand their true potential as a submissive servant and lover and moreover, know that the gift they give can easily be taken away. They don’t become subservient because they literally are an inferior creature. They become subservient because their dom is special enough to deserve it. This brings us to our next joy: inferiority.
Joy #3: Finding their inferiority erotic
Another one of the joys of being a sub is the vulnerability and ignorance of being inferior. Again, subs are not sub-human in reality, nor should they claim to be. But regardless of the situation, the subservient role always places a hierarchy in the bedroom and both parties get off on this.
Being the inferior of the two roles means someone else will call the shots, someone else will take charge, someone else will bear the great responsibility. For many this is a great relief and a great cathartic experience. The sub can throw caution to the wind and allow their entire pleasure kingdom to be ruled by their dom.
Perhaps it speaks to a time in their lives, when they were young and naïve, when life was much easier. Decisions didn’t have to be made, deadlines didn’t have to be met, nothing was necessary except to obey orders. The sub knows that they are the lesser of the two roles, so their thought process is quite simple.
The fact that they are too “inferior” or “naughty” or “filthy” to be in charge of their own safety or pleasure is quite erotic for the sub! The idea of not knowing, and not needing to know, what would be next is extremely titillating.
For example, the sub or slave is tied up, not knowing where their dom is or what he/she might do. Maybe they are blindfolded and they hear the clink of handcuffs or the crack of a leather whip. But they mustn’t worry or be fearful. It is not their job to know or to think or to expect. They’re only expectation is in the realm of pleasure and the pleasure of their dom.
But the one thing a sub must know and feel is that they are 100% safe. Their safety net is their dom and their comfort level is always considered as well, through the use of a “safe word” for instance.
Now this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this exciting world of BDSM and dom/sub role-playing.
Continue reading: “The Joys of Submission (Part Deux)”