October 29, 2010

e[lust] edition # 21

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October 18, 2010

Passive vs. Active Submission

There has been a interesting dialog going on for the past couple months, not a raging torrent but a subtle undercurrent around the matter of passive vs. active submission. Several women have spoken out about their interest and desire to be active in their submission. The classic notion of a submissive is one of passivity, a calm, a measured response, that conforms to some image that includes demure, and slight and slow.  Submission that is a restrained response, because the girl is often restrained, and it sets a tone or pattern, and she often feels that is what is expected of her. That she is expected to be quiet and calm and still and respond, and certainly is not expected to initiate.

It is a bit of a dilemma really, because she does what she thinks he wants, and so it seems it might put the onus on the dominant to guide on this.  I have looked around and not found much in the way of Dom-speak on this subject.  Most of what you see are submissive reactions or their own take on their feelings or behavior.  So, just what is the proper amount of energy/enthusiasm to put into active submission?  I think submissives often feel that they walk that fine line between expressing themselves, and drawing his wrath for being un-submissive and attempting to grab control, and I suspect it tends to make a girl very passive.

So, what do we dominants expect?  Firstly, in this matter, the dominant can be his own worst enemy. I think the nature of submission is passivity, but I appreciate a girl who leans into her submissiveness and uses it, plays with it and even initiates.  By leaning I mean expressing a more active inclination rather than a standing still waiting.  Maybe step up the assertiveness 20 or 30% but not too much, not 60 or 70%, (strange to put a number on it) but perhaps it gives a sense.  One way to be more active is to be "playful" or to "ask questions", something that gives her an "in" into the situation, perhaps to tease and taunt, play the part of a subtle seductress.

I said that this was a current topic of discussion, but I think my first thoughts in this area stemmed from a posting by meg, of Persephone in Love, well over two years ago, when her former owner suggested to her, "your kissing is too passive."
"Let me show you what it feels like." he brought his lips up to hers and held them almost completely still. She said it felt uncomfortable and disconnecting. He agreed, "that's going to stop. every kiss you give is going to be passionate and active. you're going to pursue the kissing; you're going to use your whole mouth and your tongue." She wrinkled my nose. "but that's not very submissive."

So many submissives think that they should just lay back and willingly let things happen. They do not actively reflect back the love and affection, returning it with all the passion they feel for their owner/master/lover/top. That brief discussion on passivity/passion around a kiss is a perfect example. Give every bit of yourself and throw all of your passion into every act of submission.

And in a recent post by Jz, the Tiger Girl she said:
. . . (it) is facetious and exaggerated - but you really do read a lot of advice out there about service and most of it is couched in terms that strike me as very zen and passive. Admirable, soothing qualities and I do NOT belittle them. But Tiger Girl is all about action! Submission is simply not passive to me. Instead, I see it as an active process, one that I am continually reviewing, redirecting, and refining. So, as you can probably guess, I am constantly being tripped up by the word "service".

I don't disagree with the concept, mind you, but to reconcile the discrepancies within my head, I have to frame it differently. I can't picture myself as the graceful lily, sitting with head bowed, waiting for directions. Rather, I am the tiger, crouching in the veldt, poised to spring into action when needed. 

On another blog, BDSM: A Kinster's Guide, she goes so far as to say, she does not want to be submissive, she wants to be conquered:
"I don't want to be told not to sit on the toilet seat or denied an orgasm. I want to be conquered. I want to be dominated. I want to be subdued.

To describe me as "submissive" rings false to me because I, while I greatly respect the women who do, do not get my main sense of identity from being dormant or servile. I don't want the identity of a submissive; I want to be with a man who holds the title of Dominant. He can be a dominant, a master, a warrior, a king. I want to get my identity, not from the quality of my actions, but from him. Who is he. That is where I want to derive my identity, and with it all the adjectives I use to describe myself.

Perhaps this goes beyond the active submission I have been talking about, in to something that might even be called aggressive submission.

Finally, another example of something "bordering" on aggressive submission is the writing presented by Kate, of the Games the Shrew plays... (she has recently moved her journals to FetLife.)
She has two documented experiences so far, The Rape Experiment, and Consensual Kidnapping; she is pursuing some very aggressive or assertive examples of submitting, delving deeply into the domain of consensual non-consent. Perhaps you might view them as bottoming rather than submission; however, they are examples of a most willful way of submitting herself to another, and they are very active examples indeed.

These are instances of submissive women seeking an alternative to the old classic D/s style where the submissive passively waits for guidance and direction from her lord and master. Or it maybe a changing of the paradigm of dominance and submission, reevaluating the older style and expectations. I am a bit on the conservative side, and find tradition and decorum very pleasing in many ways, but I find in this matter, I am fully in support of this more active form of submission.

In the comments section Vesta said she would write more on this topic and indeed she did, have a look at Active versus Passive Submission A thoughtful perspective from the submissive point-of-view.

And more:
And greengirl said, for me, i think it's all active
And cassie said, Too far gone?
And then Pygar said, passive vs active submission

Please, jump in and join the conversation, active? passive? aggressive? what say you?

October 3, 2010

"Far Far" - There's This Little Girl Inside

If for some reason it does not play correctly - it can be played at YouTube

Far far, there's this little girl
she was praying for something to happen to her
everyday she writes words and more words
just to spit out the thoughts that keep floating inside
and she's strong when the dreams come cos' they
take her, cover her, they are all over
the reality looks far now, but don't go

How can you stay outside?
there's a beautiful mess inside
how can you stay outside?
there's a beautiful mess inside
oh oh oh oh

Far far, there's this little girl
she was praying for something good to happen to her
from time to time there are colors and shapes
dazzling her eyes, tickling her hands
they invent her a new world with
oil skies and aquarelle rivers
but don't you run away already
please don't go oh oh

How can you stay outside?
there's a beautiful mess inside
how can you stay outside?
there's a beautiful mess inside
Take a deep breath and dive
there's a beautiful mess inside
how can you stay outside?
There's a beautiful mess
beautiful mess inside

Oh beautiful, beautiful

Far far there's this little girl
she was praying for something big to happen to her
every night she hears beautiful strange music
it's everywhere there's nowhere to hide
but if it fades she begs
"oh lord don't take it from me, don't take it" she says

I guess I'll have to give it birth
to give it birth
I guess, I guess I have to give it birth
I guess I have to, have to give it birth
there's a beautiful mess inside and it's everywhere

so shake it yourself now deep inside
deeper than you ever dared
deeper than you ever dared
there's a beautiful mess inside
beautiful mess inside

"Far Far" by Yael Naim