Slave positions are fixed culturally submissive positions that a slave is required to assume or perform either for a practical reason or as a Cultural Reference to indicate the status as slave. The most common set is the ones collected from the Chronicles of Gor books written by John Norman called the Gorean Slave Positions.
The Slave Positions are specific body positions that a slave is required to assume at specific times or on command. They are often stylized or ritualized in some form or from a specific source. The most common source for them are from the military and the Gorean Slave Positions referenced above. Others have been created by other sources. Some of the Gorean ones have been ported over to BDSM, name and all, while others have had the name changed or some small change to the positions to make them slightly different from the Gor books. Nadu is the most common port from Gor to BDSM.
Many of the positions are based on the same positions which people have been doing since before recorded history. When did a human, or more likely, proto-human first kneel? Simple kneeling is, to my understanding, common to some extent in all cultures whether it is kneeling on the heels or up with the legs bent at right angles at the knees or on one knee. Whether or not the legs are spread or where the arms and hands are placed, make up some of the differences between cultures which commonly kneel, and those which are used in various kink activities.
Why is Slave Positions a tool of consensual enslavement? I talk about it to some extent when discussing other tools. Body Positioning mentions them and gives some reasons for using them at times. It also includes a link to a TED Talk by Amy Cuddy about Body Language.
There is much more going on with certain positions than most people realize. I discuss more about them specifically in Obedience Training by using them as one of my main examples. There are other tools which include them as well.
Many of the Slave Positions are practical, especially the Gorean ones. There is a specific purpose for having the slave do them. To use Gorean examples, Bracelets is meant for a slave to position herself such that you can easily restrain her hands behind her back. Leasha is for easy attachment of a leash to the front of a collar. Kneeling to the Whip is a punishment position which protects the front of the body and the sides of the breasts while fully exposing the back, hips and buttocks. Nadu is both a very submissive and open position as it is kneeling with the thighs widely spread. This gives both a feeling of vulnerability and openness to the Master. Display or Examination (same position) is a standing position which displays the slave's body completely in a very open and uncovered way. It is a good and simple enslavement and reinforcement tool.
Not everyone uses specific slave positions. Some use a few and stop there. Others use them in both training and practice. You can also use the Gorean slave positions as a light exercise routine when done one after the other in a specific sequence. See the referenced web site above. I have seen them done to music as well. Some Stress Positions can also be used as punishment. First, because the prolonged holding of almost any position causes stress and eventually pain on the body and second is to ensure that the slave is Obedient in holding the position and not moving. The military does that with having solders stand at attention, which is also used by some as a slave position.
So far you have utility, esthetics, Enslavement, Reinforcement of enslavement and punishment all in the same tool. Like all good tools, they do more than one thing at the same time and work at different levels and interact with other tools or are part of the implementation of other tools. With so much you can do with them, I wonder why more people don't consciously use them.
Slave positions can be broken down into standing, kneeling, sitting, prone and supine positions and some that don't fit the above categories or miscellaneous positions. They are described with the positioning of the head, torso, arms, hands, legs and feet. A very good break out of body positions with excellent pictures is at the Restrained Elegance Lexicon page.
It has very good descriptions and excellent pictures. Their emphasis is very much on BDSM usage, but as source material it is a wonderful site. Most of all, it has a very good way of describing the components of the positions. The best description, in my opinion, of the Gorean slave positions is my new illustrated version referenced above. The breaking out of the body parts in the description of positions predates the Restrained Elegance page by perhaps a decade and I took that idea from a long defunct web site.
When I have a slave practicing the positions, I prefer to have the slave do them in the nude. This is not only to enable her to move easier but to also include the Nudity tool as part of the Submission to the will of someone else as is doing them at their Control. Once again, multiple tools combined together produce a more powerful effect and in this case, does not seem like two tools, just the best way to do the task, especially for practice. Having the slave practice in front of a mirror helps as well.
An important consideration is that not every slave will be physically able to assume or do all positions. They can still be used in a modified form and it will have as much, or more effect as the slave knows that you modified things specifically for her so that she could do rather than fail at doing.
In practice, I mostly use a subset of the Gorean slave positions but I have all slaves I own or train learn all of them and a few more positions that I find useful. Nadu is the most common slave position and the default kneeling position for any slave I work with. Obviously, you can use any of them or any position as a slave position. Or you can just describe how you want the slave's body to be positioned and command them into it and thus that also becomes a slave position.
28 September 2018
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