The 8 Limbs of Yoga

  • YAMA – Restraints, moral disciplines or moral vows
  • NIYAMA – Positive duties or observances
  • ASANA – Posture
  • PRANAYAMA – Breathing techniques
  • PRATYAHARA – Sense withdrawal
  • DHARANA – Focused concentration
  • DHYANA – Meditative absorption 
  • SAMADHI – Bliss or enlightenment

Maybe it’s blasphemous to connect D/s to spirituality…or maybe it’s exactly the right thing to do. I leave that for you to decide. Follow me on this, though…

A few months ago in class, my yoga instructor brought up the Yoga Sutra. She explained that the studio would be trying harder to embody all eight limbs of the path, rather than just focusing on asanas and pranayama (with a bit of dhyana to mix things up from time to time).

Now, regardless of what spiritual path you follow (or not), or what your opinions of Western yoga are, it happens to be (aside from spending time in nature and having sex) the closest to religion that I get. I take it fairly seriously, and it’s done wonders for my mental and physical health.

More than once, I’ve made a connection between my yoga practice and my relationship with my husband. There are things I learn on the mat, things I feel, and thoughts that come to me in that dark room that feel very much like enlightenment.

Today, I spent some time in that yogic place. I didn’t go to class. In fact, I went for a massage. But, I felt the same spiritual opening on the table in that dark, quiet room. As the massage therapist applied pressure to particular points, I felt an emotional release. (It’s happened in acupuncture for me before, as well.)

Bear with me as I try to make the connections I feel need to be made here.

Last night, Mr. D woke me with his hand between my thighs. He’d asked me earlier in the evening why I hadn’t written. I told him I just hadn’t been able to come up with any ideas. He said that maybe he needed to give me some inspiration.

At first, I figure this was just that…inspiration. He grazed his fingers along my outer labia, then parted them and slipped his fingers between to softly pet the inner labia with his finger tip. He made his way to my clitoris, circled it gently a few times, and my body instinctively turned toward him, my legs spreading to grant greater access.

He slipped his finger deep inside and I gasped.

Plying me with his fingers and hand, he whispered in my ear. His words are jumbled together today, and I’m not sure exactly what he said or when he said things. I know he told me to come…and that I did. I know he asked me if I liked it when he fucked my ass…and I answered that I did. He told me he liked it when I let go like that, and that he’d wait for me to be ready to stop holding back.

He also said, that hopefully between what had just happened and what we talked about the other night (what, exactly, was it I wanted from him?) that maybe I’d have something to write about today.

And I do.

I know it’s rambling a bit, but I’m going to pull it together, I hope.

On the table in the massage therapy room, with her fingers pressed deeply into the spot right behind my heart, I felt the same release that I do on the yoga studio floor, and beneath his touch.

It is highly spiritual. It is freeing in a way that can bring tears. Relief. All eight limbs of the Yoga Sutra come together.

When he is above me, my world comes into focus.

I have full control over certain aspects of my practice – which have actually become a part of my daily life. Postures, breath work, concentration, meditation…they have helped me improve my focus and mindfulness. They have helped with anxiety, depression, sleep.

But pratyahara and samadhi are a bit tougher to reach. The closest I feel I’ve ever come has been during sex…and more specifically, during D/s sex.

Yoga is about living an undivided and intentional life. It is about mindfulness, connection, and enlightenment.

I am beginning to believe that D/s is also about living an undivided and intentional life…following a path that challenges, teaches, and inspires. It, too, is about mindfulness, connection, and enlightenment.

Maybe it sounds weird…but I think D/s is part of my yogic journey. Or maybe yoga is a part of my D/s journey. Or maybe…they are one in the same?

I will say that when I got up off that table, I walked into the waiting room, had a cup of water, and left with a clear knowledge that D/s is for me. I am, and have always been, submissive. In and of itself, that is simply a quality or characteristic that, if left unexplored or trained, is simply a part of me. If, however, like yoga, I make it a journey, it is more spiritual. Something within me that I find necessary to explore. Something that will become with the right guidance.

Last year, our marriage counselor told us that our spouses are there to help us grow and change into something better. They challenge us and push us and provide possibilities that we might not have found otherwise.

This is a lot to ask of him. To ask for guidance and support and protection and instruction when I am a terrible student. To ask for these things when I am unsure even what it will look like. To ask…even when I have asked before…and failed to live up to my end of the bargain.

And this also asks a lot of me.

To be honest: it scares the hell out of me. And yet…it feels like the only possibility.

This doesn’t really fit the prompt of catastrophe. However, when I looked up the word to see if I could find and in, I read the definition as:

noun: catastrophe; plural noun: catastrophes
  1. an event causing great and often sudden damage or suffering; a disaster.
    “a national economic catastrophe”
    synonyms: disastercalamitycataclysmholocausthavocruinruinationtragedy

    • the denouement of a drama, especially a classical tragedy.

      So I looked up “denouement” and found this:

the final part of a play, movie, or narrative in which the strands of the plot are drawn together and matters are explained or resolved.

I don’t really see this as the final part of anything. On the contrary, it is more of a beginning. However, we have been living something of a classical tragedy for some time. And I did draw some strands of a plot together and make a half-assed attempt to explain them. They are, in no way, resolved, though.

Mr. D will read this post. He will react. There will be words. A conversation. Decisions.

So, I suppose, in all honesty, this could be a catastrophe.

 

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https://brigitdelaney.com/2018/04/the-yoga-sutra-and-d-s/

5 Replies to “The Yoga Sutra and D/s”

  1. D/s has and still is definitely a journey for me (and us) we are both always learning about ourselves, each other and how we fit together. After nearly 8 years I still kind of feel like we have only scratched the surface

    Mollyx

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  2. “I am beginning to believe that D/s is also about living an undivided and intentional life…following a path that challenges, teaches, and inspires. It, too, is about mindfulness, connection, and enlightenment.” Oh hell yes, I knew I felt close to you all this time for a reason. Yoga is something that was my religion, that is something that I am reclaiming as I need to recenter and reorient. And D/s is something that I need as well, I’ve felt the two connected in theory and in my life.

    Well written, though you mentioned it felt jumbled – it was not

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