December 2, 2012

Mastery: More Than Being Dominant

Words have meaning.  To truly understand what is going on, it is helpful to know precisely what a word means and the message it conveys.  Most people do not take the time to do this.  Also, when it comes to the BDSM world, they tend to think that what applies in the traditional realm is not applicable here.  This is where they are mistaken.


Too many people believe that simply because they have a particular characteristic that this translate into knowledge.  The prime example of this are all the people we meet online who claim to be "Masters".  Here we have an individual who has identified the quality of domination within oneself yet falsely believes that equates to mastery.  Therefore, our wonderful new person capitalizes his name and enters the BDSM world as a master.

In the electrical field, we see many who enter that career because they have the inclination.  From the days of their youth, they were always tinkering with electronic devices.  This lead to a fascination with electricity and, ultimately, a pursuit of it as a career.  However, this leaning towards the electrical field does not make this person a master.  In fact, he or she enters as an apprentice studying under a Master Electrician.  It takes years of study for one to reach this certification.  A general tendency does not equate to mastery.  You find this true in all the skilled fields.

Yet in BDSM people do not think like this.  They think the term Master is something that is given (usually self titled).  Few realize all that goes into successfully being a master of someone else.  To start, it requires mastery over oneself, something few seem to be able to do.  Secondly, total responsibility must be assumed hence the shift of playing the blame game which is so often present in people today.  Finally, areas of expertise such as particular types of play, psychology, and time management all come into play.  As you can guess, simply because one suddenly claims to be a master, that does not mean any expertise is present in any of these fields.

Mastering Oneself

I see few mention this in the online world but I feel it is the most important part of becoming a master.  So many are touting that they will take complete control of a slave's life and run it as they see fit.  The question is what are your qualifications for doing that?  For example, most want to control the money on a slave's behalf.  How successful is that person at running his own financial affairs?  If that person just blew through a $1M inheritance with nothing to show for it or is in debt with credit cards beyond human comprehension, perhaps that is a bad idea.  The same is true with one physique.  While it is not important to have a supermodel body, do you have enough control over yourself to exercise and eat properly.  Sure, there will be exceptions to the rule because of illness or some other medical condition, but the fact is most people in the Western World do not take care of themselves physically.  To me, this shows no mastery over this part of one's life.  Yet these people often are out there promoting the idea that they want someone "who is fit".  Take a look in the mirror first.

Having a natural inclination towards domination is only the starting point.  If you seek becoming a master of someone else, it is best to star the process of study.  Like in the trades, it is going to require years of study before you are at this level.  Unlike those professions, there are no course nor certifications which can be attained.  It is up to you to seek out the knowledge and sift through all the misleading garbage that is written.  This can make things difficult.  However, the effort itself shows a great deal about the embracing of this idea.  One who seeks to learn and ardently pursues that end cannot help but to acquire knowledge. 

I often write how the journey into BDSM is a journey within.  If you truly desire mastery, you will need to get honest with yourself about how well you have mastered your own life.  One area that is critical is emotional mastery.  People who cannot control their emotions are dangerous.  This is magnified when we are in a lifestyle where someone else is vulnerable to attack (either physical or psychological) from that said person.  Emotional stability is one of the main areas where masters are different from dominants.  One can make rational decisions in the face of emotional upheaval whereas the other simply allow his/her emotions to dictate the outcome.  Emotional mastery is something that I stress for all people.  This is a process that will take years to accomplish so it is best to start immediately.  Fear, anger, resentment, and anguish are present for all humans.  Masters will know how to deal with these things in an effective manner where someone else is not harmed by words or actions.  If not, crossing the line into abuse is very easy.  And this is not good for anyone involved.

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dave94015 on December 2, 2012 at 11:59 AM said...

I couldn't respect a self-claimed "master" who didn't have much self-discipline

Collared Cassaundra on December 2, 2012 at 3:26 PM said...

Wow. This is one of the best things on the internet that I have seen concerning the difference between Dominance and Mastery. Based on this post alone, I have chosen to follow your blog. Thank you and congrats on a VERY well done and educational post!

Anonymous said...

You are absolutely correct and this is missing from many Dominants. The same can also be said for slaves. Someone new to BDSM may think she(he) has everything that it takes to be the perfect slave. Some look at it like a title. There may be a natural inclination toward submission, but being a slave require training and time. It definitely requires some emotional control. Otherwise, you may end up topping from the bottom by trying to manipulate your Master with your emotions. It's a difficult balance between communication and emotional manipulation. Good topic, thank you.

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