June 21, 2011

Principles of "The Art Of War" in D/s

The Art Of War - written by Sun Tzu.  This book was written somewhere around 600 B.C., and is widely considered one of the foremost books on the strategy of warfare.  It is one of the oldest, if not the oldest, book about strategy in war, yet is still considered to have merit even to this day.

There are a lot of great leaders and military personnel that know and act based upon the principles of this book.  It doesn't matter if you were from the stone ages, where you ran at your opponent and threw rocks, or from the modern era and use satellites, drones and laser guided missiles to attack your enemy...the principles of The Art Of War still apply.  These tactics always have been and probably always will be highly regarded. 

So what does this have to do with a Dom/sub relationship you may ask?  Well...of course you know I'm going to tell you.  Did you really think I was just giving you a history lessen on warfare?!?!

One of the principles of The Art Of War is:  "Lead by example, not by force".  There are a lot of different types of Dominants out there.  Many are very forceful, overbearing, and demanding.  Maybe this works for them, and maybe there are some submissives that want/need this type of approach.  For me...not so much.  I think it is always best to lead by example.  I believe in teaching and showing my submissive.  I believe in being able to walk the walk and not just talk the talk. I can't expect her to willingly follow and give herself to me if she doesn't believe in me and what I am telling her.

If I am to ask her to be totally open and share her thoughts and feelings, I should first do the same.  If I am to ask her to give herself to me, she should be able to see that I am giving and devoting myself to her.  Give her a reason to believe in you.  Let her see that you are following your own advice.  When this is done, she is much more likely to believe in you as a Dominant and a person.  She will be much more hesitant to submit and follow when it is only because you have demanded it of her. Forcing someone to do something may get results, but not the end results you may want.  Leading by example will build trust and respect.  And we all know how important those two elements are in a D/s relationship.

We hear a lot about leading and guiding in TTWD.  This may be rightfully so.   Yet, how you lead and guide, as a Dominant, can make all the difference in the world.  If done the right way for you and your submissive, you can go much further and get there quicker and easier.  The wrong approach can make things much harder and delay the progress both you the Dominant and your submissive can make.  Or worse, it can destroy the relationship altogether.  Show her you care and are invested in your relationship.  Show her you are willing to do what you ask of her.  Lead by example...it will be well worth your time and effort. 

In an attempt to not make this post too long and bore you, I am splitting this into two parts.  In part two of this series on The Art OF War, I will take a look at knowing your enemy and knowing yourself. 


  1. There's a thin line between love and war. Can't wait to read Part 2:)

  2. *claps*

    A superb book and post!! I can see I'm going to love this series of writings!

    As K said--the thin line. To battle is merely to strive for and maintain position (**thinks about that and smiles**) so yes, D/s and battle have a lot in common.

    Looking forward to more, Sir,


  3. DV you always have such great words of wisdom. Great post, I am looking forward to the next chapter.

  4. I was really happy to see this post because I have been thinking about that book and how it fits into a D/s context.
    I'll be interested to read the next installment.

  5. Excellent points. I have said this to my HOH before, but I didn't know where it came from. I have asked him not to command me, but to inspire me. He regroups and comes from a different direction with a fresh approach.

  6. K...
    The line between love and war can be very thin. Isn't all fair is love and war as well?!?! ;)

    Glad you are enjoying the series so far. Keep smiling!

    Thanks so much for the compliment. Stay tuned for more.

    Didn't you know I was in your head, sifting through your thoughts, and pulled this topic out? LOL! Glad I could touch on a subject that is currently at the forefront for you. I hope my view can help you better understand the similarities between D/s and the book.

    Seems as though you are seeking the guidance without the force. A Dom being able to lead by inspiration is great. WE can't always do that, or do it well, but for em anyway, that is certainly the goal. It is fabulous that is he can and is willing to re-group and come at it from a different angle. That ability is something special that you should be proud to have in him.


  7. "I can't expect her to willingly follow and give herself to me if she doesn't believe in me".

    So true. KinkyGent has said this to me from the beginning. Whereas, my old Dom would ask me to do things but then not check to see if they were done, I soon began to believe that these tasks or whatever were not important. He had no follow through. Also, he would say how much he values follow through (which I very much did in the beginning, it's my nature) but then he would rarely follow through. I soon lost respect in him, I no longer believed in him.

    Good post DV. I have not read the "Art of War" but find it very interesting that you are comparing the basic principle of it to D/s.