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The O&P website and blog, forums, and wiki are where most of my new writing on M/s appears. The IE website will stay online indefinitely to host the IE Essays and lili's writings. lili and I pursued our M/s relationship from 2000 to 2008, and lili has kindly given her permission for these essays and posts to remain here, in the hope that submissives and slaves will continue to be helped and inspired by them.

Fascinating mystery

Posted by lili on Thu 21 Jun 01, 1:58 PM

Is it human nature to be fascinated by the mysterious? It would seem that "mysterious" cultures hold a fascination with many of us at the moment. "The tales of Sinbad", "Arabian nights", "The Market place" and even "The story of 'O'". Tales of secret societies, exotic rituals, beautiful people and wonderful places. There would seem little doubt that many people are drawn to these fantasies in the hope that there-in lies a reality, after all is it not true that there is no smoke without fire?

The current trendiness of "mysterious cultures" seems reflected into mainstream society with it's "yoga guru's", "Tai-chi Masters", "Reiki practitioners" and "crystal healers".

So you want to know more about a different lifestyle?

The first set of questions that always spring to my mind are: "What is it that says all these people are good"? Are they really "Masters" of what they do and who gets to decide that? What tests did they pass? How do I know they are as good as they say they are?

Of course it's not like signing up for a doctor or something. Would I let loose a man with a scapel if I was not sure he was trained to operate on humans? In most of the mysterious arts, there are no governing bodies, there are no "colleges" or "diplomas". We can, of course, trust word of mouth. If there are those we trust as friends who say "this person is good" then we have some assurances, don't we? What happens, then, if what we seek is guidance in how to decipher our own nature. What if we have only just walked into the world of Dominance and submission? Of course we have not had time to find friends we can trust beyond doubt and we don't understand the "rules" anyway.

The advice frequently heard is "you need a 'mentor'". This has always confused me. What, exactly, do people mean when they use the word "Mentor"? It would appear that a mentor is some kind of a guardian, a teacher, a "protector". The word, infact, originated in greek mythology where "Mentor" was the friend of Odysseus [and tutor of Telemachus.] In modern times it is used to describe "an experienced and trusted friend."

It would seem that in D/s circles the word "Mentor" has taken on quite a different meaning. From what I can gather most "mentors", for some reason, appear to be Dominants [with few exceptions.] On the rare occasion that a submissive offers mentorship it would seem to be the case that they do so under the guidance of a Dominant [usually their own Dominant or "Master".]

Undoubtably there are some out there who offer such service without malice or self serving desire. Indeed I believe there are those who do have the experience and intellect to mentor in the capacity of "an experienced and trusted friend", however, the question remains, how can you judge the worth of a person's experience when you are a novice in need of guidance yourself? You could, of course, trust the word of another, another who you may, equally, know very little about [would that be such a wise thing to do?]

I must admit I do have serious reservations about the worth of mentorship by a dominant for the purpose of guidance in being submissive, indeed I even hold reservations on the worth of mentorship in terms of "protection." "Protection" from what? Myself? Other people?

Would I go to a man for support and guidance in how to be a woman? Would he have the capacity to understand what it is to be me [no matter how many other women he had experience of?] He may know what he would expect to see in a submissive, he would, more than likely, be able to relate what he has observed in other submissive women...but would that give him the ability to understand and therefore guide my emotions? Would his second-hand knowledge help me anymore than I could help myself through first-hand experience [where my experience is that of my own exploration?]

He could claim to protect me from "unwanted" attention, but personally speaking I have been doing that for myself most of my life, haven't you? Why would I need someone to take over my protection if it is likely to prevent me from learning how to protect myself? Would a man who knows very little of what is inside my head or my past, for that matter, be able to offer me better protection than I have spent a lifetime learning to do myself?

Do I need the complications of additional emotions a dominant mentor would instigate when I am already so confused about what I need? Could I ever be certain of his trustworthiness? My advice to you? Find submissive friends [same sex at that] and get to know them as friends. If you can get together off-line so much the better. When you feel that you can trust them with some of the secrets inside your heart then trust them to recommend you a "mentor". You will probably find that by the time you are ready for this you won't be needing a mentor [you already have "experienced" friends.] What you will probably be ready for is a relationship, let the friends you've found guide and support your search for one of those instead. Use your own [and their] judgement and "gut feelings", don't ever be afraid to question. All these things kept you alive and brought you this far, didn't they? Why stop now?

Edited Fri 6 Jul 01, 10:02 PM by lili

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