Tantric Domination: The Art of Dancing to Flow
I must warn you. Even though I have years of experience in this field, I feel intimidated in trying to explain this concept.
Firstly, tantra itself is a huge topic, with so many styles, interpretations and separate practices. Domination/ BDSM/ kink; that's also quite a wide topic, and despite its current spike in popularity, it is still quite taboo for mainstream society. Furthermore, both tantra and BDSM are embodied, experiential practices. I can describe what a spanking feels like, in minute detail. But it will never come close to the actual physical and emotional experience. With Tantra, this is even more so, because there are extra layers; ego patterns, attachment styles, your kundalini energy, romantic projections, cultural programming... yes, all your identity and soul get involved when you start dabbling in tantra.
So, how can I even begin to explain Tantric Domination? For many years, I've been inspired by the idea of tantric domination. At first, I thought it was simply BDSM play with a conscious intent. Kinky play can be intense, and often involves a considerable exchange of energy between the players. Applying an intention to intense energy exchange, is another word for magic. Some branches of Tantra play with the concept of sex magic, as a means for psycho-spiritual development. As a science and psychology enthusiast, I don't like the word magic. But I do recognise the power of focused intention and commitment. The human body & brain are capable of so much that we cannot yet explain. In fact, "miracles" of science are often outcomes of focused intention, deep study, and dedicated effort, with trust in the hypothesis and an open mind to the results.
A similar process happens with tantric domination. Except, in this case, we use more of the body's intellect, starting with deeper breathing. Even without being an expert meditator or yoga buff, the simple use of breath and dynamic sound can take us deeper into presence, into quieting our minds and feeling our bodies more. The more we feel, the more we open the gates of subconscious competence- the intuition- the emotional part of our brains which is much more powerful than logical thinking. The more we feel our bodies, the more we become open to “flow”. According to Sagarin & his colleagues, “flow is a highly pleasurable and satisfying mental state involving intense absorption and optimal performance on an activity such as sports or music” (2015). Some of you might recognise the idea of flow. It's a feeling of effortless competence. Like a jazz band in perfect groove, or surfing the perfect swell, or tango dancers in tune, and athletes in "the zone". What is "Perfect", really? Isn't it a matter of feeling? Of a moment of "just right"?
If you managed to get your head and heart around that concept/feeling, now imagine being in pure flow within a domination scenario. You've done that already- in your fantasies, your horny daydreams. “But yeah, in real life, fetish dreams are never quite as intense, alive, or ... perfect, right?” Wrong. Research shows that consensual BDSM play can promote altered states of consciousness (Ambler et al., 2017). Using focused attention and an opening our bodies to our intuitive nature, flow becomes a lot easier. And in the case of Tantric BDSM, these altered states can outshine our fantasies beyond expectation, because our rational minds alone will never be as creative as the subconscious part of our brains. Are you salivating at the thought of that? "But Mistress, how can that be possible? How can you do this?!"
Ah, but here is the beauty of it. It's not about me. I am not some extraterrestrial goddess who'll perform some magic on you. I'm in the wave of flow as much as you are. I don't "do" anything special. I just breathe and surrender to my subconscious flow. Funny that huh? You'll surrender to me, while I surrender to Flow, the ultimate Domina. This is what we call surrendered leadership (I can share more about that on another article). Rather than a strict rehearsed scenario, I only use a rough outline of the activities we will explore. The outline is defined by the overlap between your and my fetish interests. When we meet, I open and feel my body and what it desires to do to you. I feel your body and how it responds. Then we surf the waves of “flow”. The fact that I have more than 15 years experience in BDSM techniques only helps me see the waves more clearly. My body is used to the toys, they are almost an extension of my hands. My mind has played this dance of consensual inequality for thousands of hours, with countless faces and bodies.
Now, a little disclaimer… You may have heard that in Tantra there is no peak orgasm (contracting/ejaculation). I prefer to think of it as not having the orgasm as a goal. Similarly, we shouldn't aim to “catch flow”. In tantric practice, the point is to feel every moment, without the expectations of peak orgasm, flow or in fact to have no "point" or goal at all. It is not a competition to get to a particular destination. The more open minded (and open bodied) we are, the more we can tap into flow. Can I guarantee we will have a session with pure flow? No. The best surfer in the world can't do much on a flat ocean. I do not control flow. But, even without flow, we can still enjoy classic bdsm, which is intense, challenging and powerful. I have so much more detail to share, techniques that help open our bodies, exercises to release the ego mind, but all that is putting the carriage in front of the horse. For now this is enough logical description. Your next step is to try it. To feel the embodied experience. So, would you like to dance? Will you surf the waves of Flow with me?
Ambler, J. K., Lee, E. M., Klement, K. R., Loewald, T., Comber, E. M., Hanson, S. A., ... & Sagarin, B. J. (2017). Consensual BDSM facilitates role-specific altered states of consciousness: A preliminary study. Psychology of Consciousness: Theory, Research, and Practice, 4(1), 75.
Sagarin, B. J., Lee, E. M., & Klement, K. R. (2015). Sadomasochism without sex? Exploring the parallels between BDSM and extreme rituals. Journal of Positive Sexuality, 1, 32-36.