Sacred Kink: The Eightfold Path of BDSM and Beyond
Mystic Productions, 2009
I’d been waiting for this book for a while; the author is an acquaintance of mine, and I’ve been following his blog adventures for a while. What I’d seen impressed me, so I was really happy to get a review copy of this. Among books on BDSM and magic, this is by far one of the absolute best you can get.
Every author who writes on this subject has hir own take on it. However, Harrington has gone above and beyond by creating a most thorough structure to work within. He elaborates on eight different paths that are much more nuanced than “top” and “bottom”. The Path of the Horse, for example, goes into the controversial topic of god-slavery, as well as other interactions of the divine in sacred kink practices. The Ordeal Path, which others such as Raven Kaldera (in Dark Moon Rising) have spoken about, involves suffering for a purpose, such as rites of passage and catharsis. And the Path of Sacred Plants is a well-designed, responsible approach to entheogen use. (Quite obviously, this book is going to raise some eyebrows–and some voices. Not a bad thing at all.0
Harrington is a good writer, and has organized the material in an understandable and useful manner. Each chapter has a nice balance of theory, ideas for practice, and anecdotes. Sadly, my reading experience was marred by some typos and other language errors, which is an all-too-common problem in self-published works. However, the content is solid, so the proofreading errors can be overlooked easily enough.
This is a solid text on the topic of esoteric BDSM. I would recommend having at least a basic understanding of both kink (particularly roles within it) and magic before attempting the material in here, but once you have good context for it, this stuff is incredibly valuable. There’s enough to explore for years of practice.
Five pawprints out of five.