My Path and Leaves of Grass | Smutober Day 5

Smutober Day 5 ~ Mastery, Walt Whitman, and Leaves of Grass

Whitman influenced me greatly. He could be called my spiritual father.

If you are an American, then Walt Whitman is your imaginative father and mother, even if, like myself, you have never composed a line of verse.

Harold Bloom

steel engraving of Walt Whitman in his 30s from the first edition of Leaves of Grass

Whitman and Mastery

I hope by now, any existing readers of Michael’s Way understand my love of quotes.

Collecting quotes from my readings has been part of my personal path to “Mastery”. How I define that word may be significantly different than the path other dominants take. And, to my mind, that’s a good thing.

There is no such thing as a “cookie cutter dominant”, we all must seek our own paths on the road to Mastery. To me, being a Master includes far more than knowing how to use a flogger or whip, learning shibari, or developing skills for other types of kinky fuckery.

Mastery is a lifelong path. It’s about learning and growing as an individual, and as a leader.

The vision I have for my own personal Mastery is to grow into a sort of leather-clad Rennaissance man, always ready with wisdom, a quote, or song to share.

If you’ve read Frank Herbert’s Dune series, picture Gurney Halleck in today’s world… (Sinnjara says I’m far more handsome than Gurney, but she’s quite prejudiced.)

Portrait of Whitman by Thomas Eakins

With that in mind, for today’s Smutober entry, I’m sharing quotes from Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.

It’s a book that’s rather infamous in my mind, as a copy of the book was gifted to Monica Lewinsky by President Bill Clinton. Regardless of what you think of Clinton, like him or hate him based on his morality, there’s really no denying that the man is well educated, well spoken, and charismatic.

Leaves of Grass was part of Monica’s seduction. So, to my way of thinking, it may also prove seductive enough to provide a nice helping of food for thought for you too, my dear reader…

This is what you should do: love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men … re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss what insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem.

Walt Whitman

Leaves Of Grass

Quotes from Leaves of Grass

“Are you the new person drawn toward me?
To begin with, take warning – I am surely far different from what you suppose;
Do you suppose you will find in me your ideal?
Do you think it so easy to have me become your lover?
Do you think the friendship of me would be unalloy’d satisfaction?
Do you think I am trusty and faithful?
Do you see no further than this façade—this smooth and tolerant manner of me?
Do you suppose yourself advancing on real ground toward a real heroic man?
Have you no thought, O dreamer, that it may be all maya, illusion?”

Walt Whitman

I sing the body electric,
The armies of those I love engirth me and I engirth them,
They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them,
And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the soul.

Walt Whitman

Your very flesh shall be a great poem…

Walt Whitman

Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.

Walt Whitman

making faces

Michael Samadhi – your humble narrator – making faces

I am expressive but secretive about my emotions.

Alia Bhatt

I am told that the time is far overdue to create and post an “about” page.

That’s the post where I am supposed to distill the essence of who I am.  It’s the point where I tell my readers everything they need to know about Michael Samadhi, not to mention laying out my vision for the blog.

Well…

This isn’t going to be that post.

I’m a lot better at telling stories about my life than I am at trying to explain what I’m all about.  I’m better at talking about what’s right in front of me than I am about explaining what’s underneath it all.

Refining what I am, and my vision for this blog will have to wait for another time.  So, for today, I’ll just post two images of myself.

Of course, neither is my normal visage.  That would be too simple…

Today is Women’s Equality Day

I raise up my voice — not so I can shout, but so that those without a voice can be heard … we cannot succeed when half of us are held back.

Malala Yousafzai

Woman’s Equality Day

In case the post title, etc., hasn’t already tipped you off – today is Women’s Equality Day.

This particular date was chosen to commemorate the 1920 certification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which gave women the right to vote.

Women’s Equality Day is more than just a celebration of the passage of the 19th Amendment.

It is also meant to call attention to women’s continuing efforts toward full equality.

Unlike Go Topless Day, this is an official event, sanctioned and proclaimed by Congress.  This year the two events happen to fall on the same day.  But, they are very much separate from each other.

Women’s Equality Day is largely the creation of Representative Bella Abzug (D-NY).  Back in 1971, U.S. Congress passed a resolution proclaiming August 26 as “Women’s Equality Day.”

It was Congresswoman Abzug (aka “Battling Bella”) who sponsored the resolution and shepherded it through the legislative process.

We are coming down from our pedestal and up from the laundry room.

Bella Abzug

Congresswoman - feminist - civil rights advocate

Women’s Equality Day for me…

I do believe very strongly in equality for all.  Equality regardless of gender, race, sexual preference, faith, etc.

For folks who know that I am a Master in a consensual power exchange, that might raise an eyebrow, or two.  I am not Master because I am inherently superior.  Any partners I might have are not slaves because of their inferiority.

Far from it…

Mastery is a role I’ve chosen.  It is a lifestyle I live.  But, it’s not a belief in my own inherent superiority.

So I heartily celebrate Woman’s Equality Day.  Obviously, I am publicizing the event here on my blog.

I honor the women who have been part of my life today.  As much as any man (with the exception of my father) they have helped me to become the individual I am today.

It’s hard to imagine the world in a time where women could not vote.  Yet, that was literally true only 100 years ago.  We’ve come a long way in the last century.

Yet, we need to go further still.  I hope that 100 years from now, our ancestors will look back and be amazed that there ever was a time when equality was even a question.  I hope that by then, life without equality is simply unimaginable…

Women who seek to be equal to men lack ambition.

Timothy Leary

Pokemon or Pussy? You Decide

what're you going to pursue?

I have friends that got swept up in the Pokemon craze.

I didn’t.

Nothing against the game itself.  Lord knows I’ve played a number of games that took more than their share of time out of my life.

It’s more a case of YKINMK.  If games like Pokemon are what trips your trigger, more power to ya.

It just doesn’t do anything for me.

I’ve simply decided to devote more time to my writing.  As well as pursuing my interests in Mastery, BDSM, and M/s.

There’s only so much time in the day.  It’s all a question of personal priorities.

Prioritizing my life, to focus on what’s important to me, isn’t something that came naturally.  I suppose it’s inherent in some people.  Not me.

I’ve always been somewhat in awe of folks like that.  They seem to be so much more focused and productive.

I have to make a conscious effort to weed out the time wasters in my life.

Which leads me right back to the meme that this short essay is built around …

It’s all about deciding what you want the most.

Back in my day, we were too busy chasing pussy to play Pokemon.

What’re you going to pursue?

Quote of the Day | 7-10-17

Masters are those who by nature have suffered to get to where they are. They have experienced endless criticisms of their work, doubts about their progress, setbacks along the way. They know deep in their bones what is required to get to the creative phase and beyond. As mentors, they alone can gauge the extent of our progress, the weakness in our character, the ordeals we must go through to advance. In this day and age, you must get the sharpest dose of reality that is possible from your mentor. You must go in search of it and welcome it. If possible, choose a mentor who is known for supplying this form of tough love. If they shy away from giving it, force them to hold up the mirror that will reflect you as you are. Get them to give you the proper challenges that will reveal your strengths and weaknesses and allow you to gain as much feedback as possible, no matter how hard it might be to take. Accustom yourself to criticism. Confidence is important, but if it is not based on a realistic appraisal of who you are, it is mere grandiosity and smugness. Through the realistic feedback of your mentor you will eventually develop a confidence that is much more substantial and worth possessing.

Robert Greene

Mastery