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Category: #the in-between space

Dedication to a play party (2022)

I have a nightmarish memory from the last SALONGEN. A man half-jumping around on his way home with one leg in his trousers while trying to say thank you and exchanging numbers with the other visitors. It’s so sad and selfish. His party was over; he was going home. By acting this way, he wasn’t only breaking the rules of the play party but also making a statement that the party was ending for everyone because he was on his way home. When he said thank you to me, I wanted to ask him never to come back again.

I am woman; on divinity and domination (2022)

Sometimes I joke that as a man, you need to prove your worth first and that you are not “one of them, the bad men”, and then a submissive woman might submit to you. However, as a woman, submissive men say that they are instantly willing to give anything as long as anything includes everything on their wishlist and nothing more. I think it’s because most people long for surrender rather than submission. Maybe the offering of submission must be greater than the self-pleasure of surrender. Divinity might be the most fitting word. The opposite of the beastly carnal love of the flesh. So, how divine are you in your dominance? Especially as the leather daddy dom?

Aftercare, self-care and resilience (2022)

When things go wrong in an intimate or intense situation, it’s often constructive to deal with it directly. Things might hurt more than expected when one is vulnerable and the armour is off. Bad feelings can be like little monsters, at first completely harmless, but if it’s locked in behind the armour, they might grow and become more and more of a problem. And next time the armour comes off, there is a massive beast on an emotional rampage waiting to come out.

Preparing to play (2022)

But in order for this to happen, one must make space. Living in northern Scandinavia, I love isolation, sauna and fasting. Isolation comes to me from the long winter nights. They make my world smaller and slower but also more focused. And they bring out the details in me, my feelings, and my surroundings. It makes it possible to grasp for the things that are usually at the edge of my awareness. It’s like a reminiscence.There is this difference between the night and the day. The daytime is so organized by the everyday tasks. Waking up, eating breakfast, going to work, eating lunch, exercising, meeting a friend, having dinner, watching NetFlix and falling asleep. So there is little space for the unknown. On the other hand, the night is neverending and dream-like—fasting and saunaing aid this. By shutting down the digestive system, I become more sensitive because my body is not constantly occupied by breaking down food, and it removes the repetitive concept of eating. Saunaing might sound very specific, but it allows me to cleanse my system. Maybe it’s only symbolic of emptying each pore of my skin and replacing the water in the lymph system. It’s preparation for something new.

Connection, cruelty and threesomes (2022)

The most important thing in my experience is the focal point of awareness. In psychology, it’s often referred to as the salience landscape-the thing that stands out right now in our understanding of the present moment. And when both people involved in the scene share the same landscape, they’ll experience the connection of belonging to the same point in time and space. It’s almost like a choreography of the mind and body. In theatre studies based on Stanislawski and Grotowski, there is a big focus on the project occupying the actor’s mind on stage. A person not knowing what they are doing on stage will look and feel confused and uncomfortable. Of course, this can be a part of a sadistic BDSM game or used to create a sense of mystery on stage. But to have a comfortable connection between the actor and the audience, they must share the same salience landscape. They must belong together. Otherwise, it’s the same punishment as being outcasted from the story.

Playing another game, living another reality (2022)

It’s time to admit my shadows
and leave my pleasure in the hands of others
when I walk this path of sacrifice.
I’m proud to exist for others,
but know that I’m not unique.
I’m an animal of desire.
Help me, let go of this false pride,
to be filled and emptied, over and over again.
Finally, may I offer something of permanence,
while something still remains.

What does this mean? Why I do write this? I’m trying to figure it in this musing. And I blame Foucault.

The conscious kinkster prepares (2022)

Participating in these fantasies had a significant impact on my life. It always leaves me in awe. And it doesn’t require any special skills. All that is needed is presence, listening and vulnerability. Still, I think one must be ready. One of my favourite artists is Marina Abramović. If you don’t know her, then check out her work. She has a retreat called the artists prepares, where the participants get to prepare themselves to have an experience through fasting, meditation, and movement. And to feel safe in themselves, balancing safety and bravery, and learning to listen to their desire. I think creativity and sexuality are very close to each other. So when participating in a play party retreat, you will also be taught how to prepare. Because I think, if one doesn’t prepare mentally, then the kink will only be physical. It will be just the whips and knots, without the emotions and mystery—the doing without the being. 

Softly surrendered to this sensuous nature (2022)

There is a river just outside the village. The tide pushes its water in and out of the ocean in and out every day and every night. I love floating down that river, either being carried into the jungle or out to the sea while watching the stary night sky above me. Surrendering to the sensuous experience all around me. Everything is calm, and I can relax, melt and let go. I’m curious if my window of tolerance will increase or decline over time. Looking at the other hippies that have lived here for years, their window of tolerance is very small. Maybe because their nervous system is very calm, and there is no need to tolerate much. Is this what they call paradise?

Workshop: Pleasure and… or pain (2022)

Welcome to this four-day retreat on the theme of pleasure and… or pain. BDSM and tantra offer different paths to ecstasy and away from the everyday mundane. By being a ritualistic framework, an intellectual toolbox, and a concrete practice with consent and consciousness at the core. At the same time, both pleasure and pain are flooding our nervous system with sensations. However, the experience of both pleasure and pain is deeply personal. Scientifically it’s impossible to measure, so we are left with poems and anecdotes to describe it. Some people are addicts to pleasure; others find meaning in pain; many confuse them when highly aroused. The key is to stay present and honest with our experience without panicking and disassociating.

Repression and masculinity (2022)

Weber would gender this unknown as something feminine. Something for the wicked witches and divine goddesses. I think modern feminism has opened up this domain to men, and BDSM is a modality for it. An opportunity to let go of rationality and repression and practice being emotional and intuitive. Even in the dominant role, exposing my, often perverted, desires is vulnerable. If I don’t share my emotions, I simply become an object for another’s desire, like the rational flogging machine pain-2000 or shibari roller-coaster hang-around-upside-down. And then again, I’m back to repression and only being valued for my skills.

Are you a slave or a slut? (2021)

People I meet in retreats and sessions have very different reasons to search for submission and surrender. There is almost always a search for permission to be someone other than their everyday selves. And this permission is found in the dominant. The roleplay, power dynamic, and polarity is an excuse to pretend that the world is different. That different rules apply. To pretend that the master is both the primal wilderness, the impossibly divine and the collaborative civilization simultaneously. Giving them this imaginary power enables them to change everything. To change all the conditions and circumstances that made us who we are.

The culture of GRÄNSLANDET // SALONGEN or how to invite others (2021)

I’m attempting over and over again to create my dream play party. Great people, live music, fantastic venue, these are obvious. But what comes next? I first encountered play parties at Schwelle7 in Berlin a decade ago. Then, it was called the aristocracy (noble court) of desire. The experience was dream-like for me. There was a culture of behaving shared by the old to the new. Expressing this culture in rules kills it. It’s like my Japanese Ikebana teacher says, almost always. Or my tea teacher says that serving tea is like smiling, and you can’t teach it by the facial expression. It is symbolic and ever-evolving, even inside a play party.

On manliness and dominance (2021)

I’m reading a book about Max Weber called Love or Greatness by feminist philosopher Roslyn Wallach Bologh. She says that if Marx was the man who most clearly defined the economic interworking of patriarchal capitalism, then Weber defined the sociological counterpart. I’m still just beginning this reading adventure, but the early chapter about manliness made me want to muse about men and dominance. It is similar to the ideas of masculinity from Male Fantasies: Volume 1: Women, Floods, Bodies, History by Klaus Theweleit that I wrote about in my text Like the ocean.

Fear and disciplin (2021)

I often talk about insecurity as the step away from safety, away from the known and into the mystery. It’s the first tiny step, and I think it is the longing of many. If one continues on that journey comes maybe unease, anxiety, distress, fear, panic, and apathy. Most want to be brave enough to take the first step, but few want or perhaps no one to go all the way. Moving towards the unknown activates the nervous system; the interpretation depends on the window of tolerance if it is arousing or stressful.

jesus saves neon signage

Confessions from GRÄNSLANDET (2021)

When you enter an event like GRÄNSLANDET you never know where it’s going to take you. Everytime is different. Everytime you find something new in yourself. This time it took me deep into the realm of voyeurism and exibitionism. The evening was a reminder of how much we all need to be seen. Not just in an exhibitionist way but in a human way. To meet the gazes of others and share the same space.

The wordlessness of the space spoke to me. I was drawn by the promise of silence. There are no words in the headspace I want to be in anyway. For someone like me, who feels so exhausted and drained in my everyday life that I mumble good morning to my colleagues without making eye contact, this was a reminder of that need to connect. The wordlessness makes it safe, no unwanted questions or concern, just presence and acceptance. A restful space. That is what I seek in my exploration of BDSM – a safe, calm and restful space.

There was strange music playing. Bodies moving, dancing, flowing. Eyes watching and being watched. Hesitant and bold at the same time. Objectified by the anonymity. Dehumanized and still more human than ever.

When I play I usually get so caught up in my own experience that I stop noticing the world around me. But this evening as I watched others playing I saw the sadistic grin on their faces and shared in their enjoyment. It was impossible to look away, I was enthralled, eyes wide. As someone turned and asked: “Did you see our session?”, the light in their eyes reflected in mine. Yes, I saw you.

Perhaps I am a bit more at home in this setting than my partner. We played, not hard or edgy but enough for us in that space and time. The point is not what we did but what it did to us.

Throughout our whole session I was aware of the surroundings; the otherworldly music, the audience, the school desk wobbling under me with every blow, the irony of the wooden cross on the wall above and the heat of the spotlight that was aimed right between my legs. I kept looking up to see if anyone was watching. I wanted them to see. He made me straddle the desk and my exposed pussy was lit up. Much to my partner’s amusement my head was banging against the wooden cross as he was spanking me. I had to turn my blushing face away. Wanting to hide but not being able to. Wanting to be seen but not being able to admit it.

The exposure and shame might also be my biggest kink. Being held down, exposed, forced and used. My naked body and all my most perverted desires for all to see. I wear my shame with pride. I revel in it. There’s no hiding from the truth. You know it, I know it.

So I confess.

I love this.