The Feelz versus the Mind

“Being a slave is the hottest thing I have ever (ever!) experienced. And it definitely FEELS totally right to me.”

“But, being a slave sometimes counters my inner beliefs…”

The path down the transgressive route of Domination/submission or Master/slave isn’t a smooth rainbow ride. Many of us underwent quite immense amounts of self-doubt and reflection in order to arrive at a stage of our life where we feel confident of our peculiar human behaviours. i include myself in that statement. i often face the juncture of whether to follow how i feel, or to follow what i think.

Power exchange might feel right in your gut. For instance, the moment when you step on the face of another human being, and you feel uplifted, it feels right for you; the moment when your head is on the floor and you are using your tongue to clean another’s boots, it feels right for you. These are the gut feelings that instinctually feed into our sadomasochistic tendencies.

But, sometimes we doubt our feelings when our mind kicks into the action as we question and doubt ourselves. Is it morally right? Is it abnormal? Am I a freak? In my humble opinion, asking ourselves those questions is important to keep us safe and sane. Without self-reflectivity, we will act on our desires and impulses with no sense of safety and boundaries. But, too much self doubt will inevitably kill our sense of self, murder our desires and destroy our egos.

In the end, i think the conceptual enquiry of “Feelz versus Mind” always needs to be located somewhere in the middle of the two ends: a balance of the feelz and of the mind. my own preference tends closer towards the feelz than the mind, but who is to measure and standardise the degrees of feelz and mind? Eventually, it is up to ourselves in reference to our own cultural and societal background, to come to our own resolution as to where we want to situate ourselves.

In his essay on storytelling, Walter Benjamin observed two modes of the craft. The first mode of craft metaphorically resembles “the seaman” who brought knowledge and ideas from afar; the second mode of craft is embodied by “the farmer”, who is telling a story from some time ago. But it was only with the ‘intimate interpenetration’ of these two essential functions that storytelling finds its ‘full historical breadth’, a synthesis Benjamin attributes to the artisan class of the Middle Ages. For the purposes of storytelling, then, distancing has both a spatial and a temporal dimension (Teh 2011).

Perhaps an intimate interpretation of the feelz and mind would be the way in which, together, it provides us a “full breadth of experiences”.


Teh, D., 2011. Itinerant Cinema. Third Text, 25(5), pp.595–609.

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