By Ms. Selina Minx
Sacrifice, offering and renunciation are universal spiritual concepts. They are all interconnected, the basic effect being the transfer of energy from the supplicant to the institution, deity or top. Whether it is a tithe, giving up something for Lent, or the complete rejection of all physical comforts, sacrifice is a mainstay of the three main religions currently dominating our planet. As a pagan, sacrifice is also important, with offerings made in the form of nearly anything desirable. Different pagan Gods and
Goddesses prefer different sacrifices or offerings, and different rituals can accompany each.
The offering of blood, or the sacrifice of a life is an ancient concept, harkening back to the days of sympathetic magic. The rain of blood upon an unyielding, infertile field was a way of infusing the land with the vitality of the sacrificed beast. The idea of appeasing the Gods to gain their favor works just as well when your God/Goddess is a human top. To spill blood, to endure pain, these are transfers of energy, and when done with intent will make an energetic deposit to the chosen recipient. Sacrifice of any kind creates an expectation of return, be it attention, training or other investment.
Energy transfer is deeply incorporated into the BDSM life path. Taking the form of tributes, chastity, sensory deprivation, intense sensation and more. The act of giving something up exemplifies the life of a slave. It may be as simple as giving up a level of comfort, and transferring that abundance to their Mistress/Master, or it may be a complex series of ritual actions including masturbation, chastity, self-flagellation and genuflection before a shrine depicting the Mistress/Master. Even simple nudity in the presence of the Top is a renunciation of the freedom to leave, the freedom to cover one’s self, the freedom to adorn the body and the ritualized renunciation of the rights of ownership.
Let’s take a closer look at the myriad ways that sacrifice is expressed in the BDSM life path.
A tribute is an easy, simple way to make an offering in an SM context. Using the concentrated energy of money to transfer resources to the Mistress/Master is an effective way to express your appreciation and gain favor. A tribute transfers the power of your time and expertise into a format easily traded for anything the Mistress/Master may desire.
An offering is slightly more complicated because it requires that you know what will please your Mistress/Master. Some may want chocolate and champagne, others only want latex. Traditional religious offerings of flowers, incense and food may also be appropriate.
Sensory Deprivation is a rather dramatic way of giving up of power. Surrendering the ability to see, hear, speak or move is the surrendering of one’s humanity. One places themselves entirely in the hands of their Top when they give up their senses, and becomes the passive recipient of whatever the top deems appropriate.
Chastity is the surrender of control over one’s own sexuality for the enjoyment of the Mistress/Master. A Dominant may enjoy controlling every aspect of a slave’s sexuality, including only allowing them sensation or release when they are in the presence of the Top and have fulfilled the Top’s requests. This offering of sexual energy is an intense form of renunciation which severely underlies the power dynamic. Some Dominant’s may require a slave to masturbate for them, other’s may strictly forbid any pleasurable touching of the self. I personally prefer to require my slaves to masturbate, but to forbid them orgasm until the energy has been raised to the level I desire. The intensification of the submissive urge when release has been delayed is a most useful adaptation to traditional chastity. It also makes a slave most receptive to instruction. A similar technique is employed when training animals using food as the reward. The animal is kept hungry so they are motivated to perform trained actions for food.
Intense sensation is to make an offering of pain for the enjoyment of the top. This also works when your Top is a God or Goddess. Suffering is, at it’s root, the sacrifice of comfort and ease. The conscious offering of pain, physical or emotional, is a very powerful transference of energy. The use of pain as an offering is most appropriate for the sadist/masochist dynamic, but is also useful in B/D situations. A slave may offer to take a number of lashings to make up for a mistake, or simply to show their devotion to the Mistress/Master. This can be expanded out to include anything which diminishes a slave’s comfort. Things like sleeping on the floor, going without underwear, getting a piercing are popular demands.
Giving up something that one enjoys for a higher purpose is an elegant way to improve one’s self. The motivation to please a top, or gain the favor of a Deity is an excellent way to navigate the self into a higher expression. We are all imperfect beings. By leveraging our attunement to favored archetypes we leverage our soul beyond what we could normally achieve.
Dark Moon Blog
Jan 20, 2011