13 November 2005

Thinking about BDSM

Yesterday I watched a documentary about Dominique Aury the author of, under the pseudonym Pauline Reage, "The Story of O." It was fascinating watching a very ordinary woman talk about a book that was such a milestone in erotic writing. I've always had a perplexed attitude to BDSM. I've always found it hard to understand the eroticism of pain and the willingness of some people to give up complete control to another, particularly in the context of unequal power relations between the sexes.

But I've continued to listen to articulate and intelligent women and men with thoughtful and committed social justice politics talk about the deep sexual and emotional satisfaction they experience through BDSM sexual practices, so I can't just write it off as a kinky perversion. Not that I would have, being suspicious of that response to anything sexually "different" or difficult.

But, something clicked for me when Dominique Aury talked about the spiritual component of handing over control to something greater and outside of ones self and how this is experienced as a transcendent moment. She likened it to the mortification of the flesh and the spiritual ecstasy common in many religious traditions. This made me think BDSM could be a secular version of this age old spiritual practice.

There's probably nothing in new in this idea for anyone who's into BDSM, but it made sense to me in a way I hadn't previously thought about.

It's also made me understand a little more the writings of someone like Magdelena, who describes here in loving detail her experienced of being birched by her lover. Here she shows us the result, which I must admit I found fairly disturbing. But the spiritual as well as sexual satisfaction (I doubt there is a distinction for her) is very obvious in her writing.

All things to ponder on and mull over. Not the least in relation to the way I think about my own need for control and how this related to a spritual practice.

My writing is not going as well as it was, but I'm doing some nearly everyday. As always it's a plot problem, but I think I see the way forward. If I can't do 1,500 words a day, 500 is better than nothing.

Perhaps I experience writing in the same way Magdelena experiences being birched, pain and then release. The agony of it not it going the way I want it to and then the satisfaction when I give up control and allow it to flow in what ever way it needs. Even more to think about.

2 Comments:

At 19 November 2005 at 3:15 am , Blogger magdelena said...

Keziah, naturally I was moved by this post. I am so very pleased that Aury gifted you with an insight you had previously not known. There are so many things I would like to say here but I have more respect than to overcrowd your comments box. So my intention is to write a piece for you, words from my heart that I hope will explain this fascinating enigma some more. In the meantime, know that I am touched that you see beyond the obvious. It'll be my pleasure to lift that veil.

 
At 19 November 2005 at 8:36 am , Blogger Keziah Hill said...

I look forward to that Madelena.

 

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home