Bondage is delightful.
The sensory input of pressure, restraint, and the texture of the bonds thrills and allows the sub a physical gateway into mental submission.
Bondage is an excellent aspect of Kink, and, in the case of shibari, a complete art form unto itself. Intricate knots, beautiful pseudo articles of clothing, slings, suspension - the list goes on and on.
Many love to admire a beautiful man or woman trussed to specifications by a skilled artist, and the erotic value of a restrained sub is (for me, at least) sky high.
Shackles and cuffs are also wonderful items - either prison grade to reinforce total submission with a dash of humiliation, or fleece lined leather to afford luxury and comfort while still providing immobility. So many options, so many avenues for sensory delight.
Physical bonds: we love them
But what about mental bonds?
What about the inherent binding power of a Domme/Dom's will as it is exerted over a submissive: that bond which can keep a submissive on their knees with a mere look; the bond that courses from hand to face with the merest tilt of a submissive's chin; the bond that is still felt even after a scene is finished, which stays with the submissive as s/he leaves and goes back into day to day life?
I would argue that this type of bond, this chemical/emotional/willful bond, is as powerful as those that bind elements unto one another.
It's this type of bond which should be the goal, the endgame, the light at the end of the long tunnel through each journey of self discovery and search for true Dominance/submission.
Am I dismissing physical bondage?
Of course not.
I'd be foolish to dismiss the physical (and fantastic) initial gateway so often necessary for passage to submission and enjoyed by so many of us as we play with our respective partner(s).
My point is that mental bonds - those forged by time and interaction and tempered by skill and knowledge - are far more powerful and far more intimate than their rope and metal counterparts.
As Dominants, we must not rely on physical bonds to assert the control given to us willingly by our needful submissives.
Needful is not a dirty word, but rather an honest admission of the state of those who would submit: the craving of a Dominant to bind them, physically or mentally, and give them total peace.