Sunday, September 05, 2004

It's incumbent upon me, as a highly visible representative of the BDSM community, to remember to be tolerant – in public, at least - of other people's way of expressing their kink. I will not always understand it or agree with it, but it's important to try to give them the respect I want for myself.

But my god, this kind of thing really makes me want to hurl.

The Submissives Prayer
allow me the strength to answer questions i cant fathom,
allow me the spirit to know His needs,
allow me the kindness to choke back retorts,
allow me the serenity to serve Him in peace,
allow me the love to show Him myself,
allow me the tenderness to comfort Him,
allow me the light to show U/us the way,
allow me the wisdom to be an asset to Him,
let me show Him each day, my love of my service to Him,
let me open myself up to completely belong to Him,
let my eyes show Him the same respect, whether i sit at His side, or kneel at His feet.
let me accept my punishment with grace of a woman,
let me learn to please Him beyond myself.
I found this on a male-dom BDSM discussion list. (Hence the capitalized male pronouns and the "with grace of a woman" line.) The woman who posted it thought it was, "so beautiful and so true". I was polite and did not say that to me, this looks like nothing so much as a codependents to-do list. I always try to be polite in other people's spaces.

But this is my space, so: Jesus H, what the fuck with this kind of shit? The Submissives Prayer? This reads like something composed by Phyllis Schlafly for the Southern Baptist Convention. They could engrave it on little lacquered plaques and sell them at church socials.

And to whom, exactly, are we praying? There seems to be an eerie kind of fluidity in perception here – it almost reads like the dominant is god. That's fucking spooky.

No one on the list in question responded with a prayer for dominants, which I found significant. Although now that I think about it, I'm sure someone could compose one of those that I'd find equally appalling.

Look, there's nothing wrong with wanting to be kind and serene and tender and respectful. Those are all good traits to bring to any relationship - when they're used wisely.

And while it's not my bag, I know a few people who are engaged in a relationship where one person considers themselves to be owned by the other, and that's how they like it.

But for a submissive/slave to afford their dominant this god-like status…well, I don't think that's generally healthy.

I'm a pervert, people - a big ol' sexual pervert. I do nasty things to people because it makes me wet. There is no other good reason to do BDSM. This sickly-sweet little paean sounds like it was written by someone who was desperately trying to pretty up and smooth over the sticky sexual reality of what BDSM is about by making it sound like some kind of personal-growth regimen. But I sure as hell don't want anyone praying to me, the idea of anyone praying about me makes me extremely uneasy, and I think the notion of anyone praying to be a better pervert is just fucking weird.

Postscript: an alert reader has turned up a webpage with a very similar version of the above "prayer" with a copyright on it. Being the respectful artist that I am, I will now note that here - Author: Screamer © 1996

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