TPE Tenets

The first time I had introduced the concept of tenets to a slave, it took a moment to explain what the purpose and intent was.  Essentially a tenet is defined as:  “a principle, belief, or doctrine generally held to be true; especially one held in common by members of an organization”  (Merriam-Webster).  By providing a series of tenets you are codifying perhaps the most critical aspects of values, principles, and agreements (as found in a M/s contract) to simple statements.

We see this all the time in other systems, rules or codes which uphold principles and values.  Common examples include the 10 Commandments, the Toltec Four Agreements, the Buddhist Four Noble Truths, the Five Pillars of Islam, the Eight Virtues of the Bushido code, etc.  Because power exchange taps very deeply into our personal belief systems, should not there also be similar tenets for slaves and their Owners?   I strongly believe their should be, and here’s why…

Structure in Power Exchange Relationships

In Power Exchange relationship dynamics, it is imperative that clear roles and responsibilities are communicated and understood.  Typically, this is exactly what those that choose to be a TPE (total power exchange) relationship do so, because there is often more clarity about what is expected than many “vanilla” relationships, which often try to leave much unspoken and “understood” – leaving everyone with their own individual understanding, but not a SHARED understanding.

Tenets uphold a Power Exchange dynamic

Benefits of Tenets

The benefit, therefore, is that developing tenets assist decision making and choices in daily life that supports the relationship. Life moves at a hectic pace, and often presents us with challenging scenarios of balancing the interests of partners, work, friendships, children, family, etc.   It’s easy to get caught in modes of solution/decision/action and lose sight of priorities, or how to come back to core values around the primary or other extended relationships.

I believe strongly that success or failure is not found in rare moments and exceptions, but by the basis of everyday choices.  The key to achieving a dream is not the dream and wishes, but making supporting choices at every moment and every turn that steers you closer to your goals and keeps you on track.  Relationships need the same level of attention – to have supportive and constructive choices made every day, and to eschew the reflexive actions of destructive emotions.

The Tenets help the slave to keep a sense of priority, to ensure decisions are guided with a purposeful intent, and recall how to manage themselves and interact to lend to a peaceful relationship.  Similarly, the Dominant has the same challenges in managing conflicting demands and interests on time, resources, attention, etc.   By keeping to a small set of role focused tenets, often based on your personal Guiding Principles (see post), you can hopefully avoid the pitfalls of confusion, chaos, and distraction to something that fosters consistent self-management of what matters to you most.


I provide the below as examples and are not necessarily indicative of what you should necessarily adopt.  You need to define your relationship, your values & principles, your goals and therefore the priorities for every day decisions and guidance.  The below is offered to help illustrate what I have used in the past for my own personal efforts and not necessarily suitable for everyone.

Tenets of a Slave

Activeness – to remain pro-active and never idle; not to wait passively for instruction but to seek guidance or practice one’s training (mental, physical, emotional, etc).  Look to learn new or enriching skills to employ.

Communication– to express thoughts and emotions appropriately, clearly, and respectfully regarding all things.  Hold no secrets, hold neither grudges nor regrets in what is shared.

Deference – to defer to your Masters decisions, and while questions or objections may be expressed, his word is final. There is a time and place for questions, but may not be right now.

Devotion – to serve attentively & focused; seeking to anticipate the needs & desires, wishes or whims, and provided with all your being. Be fully in the moment of your service: mindful, aware, and full of clear intent.

Excellence – to strive to be the best you can, in service, in training, in your professional and home life. There is no Perfection, mistakes will be made, but excellence accepts these as opportunities to learn and grow.

Faith & Trust – to uphold Faith and Trust in your Master. Choose to Believe in him, to show faith in the relationship, and to turn aside fear or insecurity. Trust is both earned and extended, each supports the other.

Obedience – to obey your Master, follow-directions intelligently, and ask meaningful questions to clarify understanding.  Trust you will not be asked to do things unreasonably, even when pushed.

Openness – Never to deny affection, sexual service, warmth, companionship, attention, or entertain Masters whims and pleasures. If something has been demanded that you cannot comply, see Communication.

Ownership – to embrace ownership, never refusing access or demands, that you are now the property of your Master. Keep yourself well, healthy, in good shape and working order so you may fulfill your duty with joy.

Respectfulness – to always show respect in how one acts & communicates. Regardless of what is felt, respect must always be shown by exercising self-control, patience, and clear intent.

Self-Managing – to manage your own affairs as best you can; to avoid requiring micro-management, but never hesitate to ask for input or guidance. Have faith that support is there in true moments of need or emergency.

Tenets of an Owner

Communication – to communicate as openly and honestly about all things in all ways. Speak with clarity and compassion, for while even in the best of intents, it is the reality of our consequences that causes the hurt.

Consistency – to be consistent in expectations and behavior to foster trust and structure; have good rationale & reason where change is needed or as required. Avoid over committing and seeming unreliable.

Guidance – to provide instruction and guidance where he deems warranted or as requested by the slave; act as a mentor in all life aspects (slave training, home finances, sex, etc) where you have actual knowledge.

Honor – to be honorable in thought and deed; always seek the high road in the choices life presents.  When a mistake is made, own it and apologize regardless of the time passed or how inconsequential it seems.

Love – Never to deny love, warmth, affection.  Do not abandon or emotionally distance as a punishment – either stay or release her.  Do not squash her emotions, but train respectful communication. Empathize.

Patience – to show patience while training, teaching, guiding or communicating. Be realistic and have presence of mind to put a dialog on hold until a calmer demeanor is reclaimed by both. Not everyone things as you do.

Protection – to protect what is his with passion and careful consideration of the impact upon the slave and her life. To turn away from simple control or petty jealousy as excuses under the guise of protection.

Respect – to always show respect, in that while a slave may be His property, she is cherished and respected as a consensual slave of love & adoration.  Her submission is a gift of devotion and love, and are fragile.

Structure – to provide a sense of organization and structure with clearly expressed expectations. Be considerate and realistic to the demands of her time outside, and flexible enough to remain adaptable.

Trust – to trust in the relationship and the slave to grow, mature, and develop. Do not entertain suspicion or insecurity of mistrust, do not violate privacy or intrude through deceitful means. Gently confront, but directly.

Truth – to be as truthful as possible in all things, especially with His self, so not to mislead the slave. Contemplate well your own perceptions, and that of others, to come to a broader truthful understanding.



Ultimately, be it goals or relationships, we can put a penny into the “good bucket” or into the “bad bucket”.  We can argue until we’re blue in the face regarding “what I meant” or our intents, but ultimately it’s the consequences of our actions, based on our choices, that produces our results.  Tenets help by ensuring that, if nothing else, we pause a moment to consider our consequences and try to make the best choices we can.  In this way, we grow and develop what we value, and steer clear from often what we fear.


-Sir Vice
Copyright 2014  Limits Unleashed