What is Tantra?
„When the body is freed from repression, the senses freed from dullness, the mind is freed from forced thinking – then a vision can arise in you, one that is freed from all illusions.“
Although nowadays still often synonymous with sex, Tantra is really about connection and feeling – whether that’s with yourself, or between you and a partner. The word itself – derived from the ancient Sanskrit – means ‘web’ or ‘to weave energy’.
In practice, Tantra is about enlightenment – to transcend both the sexual and spiritual planes by engaging in deeply meditative, spontaneous, and intimate sex. As I often say: TO BRING HEAVEN TO EARTH, which means to bring awareness and consciousness of the higher chakras into the body and the lower chakras.
Body Awareness & Mind-Body-Consciousness
Like Yoga, Tantra is all about physical and spiritual awareness. When you learn and practice Tantra, you become more in-tune with your body, with what gives it pleasure, and the way it feels pleasure. This allows you to pay better attention to your body’s wants and needs and make sure they’re fulfilled.
The energies you channel during tantric sex flow throughout your body and can intensify your orgasm.
If you have a partner, it is about getting to know their body, too. Tantra is not only focused on reaching a higher state of mind-body consciousness. It can also be about creating a deeper, more harmonious bond with your partner.
When you practice tantra, you and your partner learn to be physically aware and spiritually present, feeding each other energy that continues to grow well after you have finishing having sex.
Tantra also allows you both to explore and expand all aspects of your personalities, so that you begin to truly know the other person inside and out.
Tantra, the mystery
What is Tantra really? Science, Philosophy, Massage, Kamasutra or What?
Tantra is popular. A lot is being written about it and even more is being said about it. If you ask someone what they know about Tantra, you will receive as many different answers as persons asked. For many, Tantra is identical to Tantra massage, for others it is about extreme sex, exotic positions, a type of spiritual swinger club. One often hears about concepts like “cosmic orgasms”, or “holy sex”, or “universal love”. In principle, you can find in Tantra what you seek.
Here we are trying to address a theme, for which the spoken or written word is not the right tool. How should we begin with a theme, which cannot be understood with the mind or even with words? In the best case we can hope to shed a little light on it.
There is no uniform concept for Tantra
Many different directions and schools have developed, which can display very different approaches. You can imagine it like a tree, whose uncountable branches stretch out in all directions. It would go beyond the scope of the discussion here to mention all of these separately. For those who would like to know more, we can recommend a visit to the Wikipedia site. There is a summary of everything documented historically and through literature. Decisive is not however the collecting of theoretical knowledge, but the personal practice and experience.
The teachings have primarily been passed from teacher to student, so from the beginning there was few written. In addition, most of the existing texts have been destroyed because Tantra was seen as a danger to the ruling institutions. The British did a good job of “cleaning up” India, where the Christian missionaries showed themselves as especially zealous.
Since the 1970’s the Neo Tantra has been developing, starting in the Osho Meditation Resort in Pune (India). The most well-known proponent of modern tantra is Margo Anand Naslednikov; the founder of The Sky Dancing Institute and the author of many non-fiction works. Neo Tantra can be viewed as an Update of original Tantra. It is interwoven with modern science and psychology and has (particular to institute and orientation) primarily a therapeutic meaning.
Tantra is Rebellion
Tantra is rebellion against the Brahman Cults, rebellion against the ruling opinions and against the establishment. It is rebellion against morality and doctrine, against religion. This has always been a dangerous stance, back then as well as today. There were times in which the Tantrists were persecuted and had to seek refuge in the remotest regions of The Himalaya.
Tantra is Science
Tantra is a science of consciousness, the experience of self, transformation, love and devotion. Tantra is not theoretical, it is not a philosophy. It has nothing to do with the head or “thinking”. Philosophy can be comprehended with the intellect, with concepts and speech. This is not so with Tantra. Tantra is not an intellectual concept, but the experience of each individual. It transcends thinking, and requires a change, a transformation.
Tantra is Perspective
The present condition of the world could be described as aggressive, egotistical, mercenary and hate-filled. On every corner it is burning, the world is a ticking time bomb. The condition cannot be sustained, the world is close to collapse. Tantra is a perspective.
Through the evolution of mankind something has been lost: empathy. Empathy means to put oneself in the feelings, emotions, thoughts, and pain of another, to put oneself fully in the shoes of another, in all these aspects. In place of this power madness, abuse, repression and emotional coldness has taken root.
Since the Flower Power Time at the end of the 1960’s a new consciousness has been discovered all around the world – and this new consciousness is tantric. Tantra belongs to the future, for the prevailing dualistic view of life is slowly losing it’s hold over the human psyche. Responsibility, Consciousness, Acceptance and Tolerance as well as a peaceful and social interaction have become centrally important to more and more people.
Large, spiritual communities like ZEGG and Parimal in Germany, Tamera in Portugal, Findhorn in Scotland or Auroville in India are sprouting up all over the place and there is no end in sight. In contrast there is the Terror Insanity in the Near East, spreading it’s poison like a cancer. We can only hope that globally enough consciousness has “collected”, to work against this terrible energy.
The Tantric Vision.
„The tantric vision is one of the greatest visions that people have ever dreamed: a religion without priests, without churches, without organization – a religion which doesn’t nullify the individual, but respects his individuality unconditionally.” Osho.
Tantra negates nothing and transforms everything. It offers a plan, a strategy to help you on the way on the journey inwards and also above and beyond yourself. Tantra works with the body, the senses, the breath and the consciousness.
The Body. Tantra teaches you to relearn respect and love for your body again. Your body is the base, in which you are grounded. Of course tantra reaches above the physical body, but never leaves it, is rooted in it. How much attentiveness have you shown your body in your life up to this point? Have you accepted it completely? Have you satisfied it’s desires and needs? Or have you been told that the spirit is the true measure of all things and you have believed this?
Tantra says: First, purify your body – from all the repression. Let the body energy flow, break through the blockages, or else you will not be able to journey inward, or transcend the body either.
The Breath. Most people breath very shallowly, the breath not reaching below the breast. Tantra, as well as yoga teach to breath deeply, to clear the lungs of carbon dioxide and nitrogen. The carbon dioxide and nitrogen are not needed by the body. They are just a by-product in the air that must be constantly removed through exhaling. If one breathes shallowly the lungs are half filled with carbon dioxide. This leads people to lethargy, they don’t seem truly awake and it is hard to be fully conscious. We need oxygen, it feeds the inner fire and sexuality. The sexual energy must be freed up, it must flow through the whole body, so we can access our entire potential and not run around at half power. When we breath deeply, the breath flows directly into the sexual center.
The Senses. Are the gates of perception, the windows to reality, to existence. For most people, however, the senses have become dulled through constant grumbling, planning, and thinking. What is not constantly used, will grow rusty. Tantra says: “Flow truly into every touch, taste the divine in every flavor. Touch, smell, taste, look, listen – as completely and fully as you can.
Every child is born with wonderfully intact senses. Watch a child for awhile in everything that they do. If it looks at something it is fully mesmerized, it becomes one big eye. And when it listens it becomes fully ear. And when it eats, it becomes fully tongue, it becomes fully all of it’s senses. Look at the excitement and energy when it bites into something it finds delicious! On the beach, when a child finds a simple shell, it is like finding a diamond! Later in life, however, the same child will see everything as though looking through a dusty glass. Lots of dust will block the perception of most sensations out.
When is the last time you completely consciously and passionately bit into a juicy apple and were thereby able to taste the whole spectrum of flavor? Or were you talking and eating at the same time? How much attentiveness did you show the apple and your senses then?
Get your senses back whenever you think about it, it doesn’t matter which opportunity presents itself. Pay more attention to your eyes, ears, hands, nose and tongue – let them slowly wake up again. Do this with devotion, then you will feel a new level of consciousness arise within yourself.
Consciousness. In Tantra there are three types of consciousness.
1.) Let your mind do what it wants. Let it fill itself with thoughts and contemplate this from a distance. Simply be the observer, then you will realize that between the thoughts there are patches of stillness.
2.) As soon as you become aware of these patches between thoughts, you will also become conscious of being the observer. Observe the observer, and new patches will arise. Then the observer will slowly disappear, exactly like the thoughts. One day the thinker will also disappear. Then there is real stillness.
3.) In this third consciousness the object and subject have both disappeared.
The Five Keys of Tantra
- Ego und Character
The First Key: Acceptance
“The Essentials of Tantra, it’s essential nature – radical, revolutionary and rebellious – comes out of the fact, that the world, is not divided into good and bad, above or below, but is one whole. High and low are hand in hand. The low incorporates the high and the high incorporates the low. The high is hidden in the low – therefore the low can never be denied, can never be damned. The low need only be transformed.” Osho, Indian Mystic and Spiritual Teacher.
This means, that there is no duality: everything is good and must be accepted just as it is. The division into good or bad, God or devil, heaven or hell, dogma and sin has burdened mankind with guilt. It has enslaved people, made them unhappy and destructive. The dualists have poisoned everything: sex, the body, relationships, love and thought.
“Accept yourself fully and completely, accept your body, your sexuality, your longings and needs. Accept yourself as a complete being!”
The Second Key: Self-awareness
An essential tenant of Tantra is self-awareness, that a thinking spirit is an errant spirit. Thinking is not the language with which to connect to existence, on the contrary, it hinders it. Thoughts cut us off from reality, they build a barrier.
When we constantly busy ourselves with thinking, grumbling, analyzing, interpreting and philoso-phizing, then we distance ourselves from existence. The more thoughts we have, the harder it is to see clearly. Thinking is past or future. In interaction with reality, thoughts and words are completely senseless. Silence and stillness are called for, words are counterproductive and can even destroy.
The Third Key: Consciousness – Communication and communicating with being
„Become conscious and learn the language of consciousness, because Consciousness is not burdened with the past.“
It is life in the present, in the moment, it is communion with existence. Then everything is filled with spontaneity, creativity, desire and joy and the life energy can fulfill it’s promise. The key to this is meditation.
Every act, that comes out of a high level of consciousness, will be attentive and respectful. People who live consciously are balanced and peaceful, and do not harm others.
The Fourth Key: Sexuality
Sex is as “holy” as Samadhi or Paradise. Low and high are part of evolution. The lowest rung is a part of the same ladder as the highest rung. If we don’t accept the lowest rung we can never reach the highest one. Or put another way, you cannot begin building a house at the roof, you need a strong foundation.
Sexuality is the basic, fundamental energy, through which and with which we were born. The sexual energy is the foundation of EVERYTHING – it is our life energy. It is neither good nor bad, it is simply natural. If it cannot flow freely, it leads to blockages physically, and primarily, psychological. In most individuals this energy gets stuck in the first Chakra – how should it be able to flow freely? It then looks for another outlet. This individual becomes unsatisfied and aggressive, he aspires to material success or power.
„Learn the language of the orgasm! Let the sexual energy flow whenever you want.“
In the love act with a woman/man something extraordinary happens. For a few seconds we truly leave our heads, suddenly we are completely separate from our head/our thoughts. Try one time during orgasm to formulate a thought – it is impossible, am I right? In this moment we are one with the whole, with creation. In this moment there is no more Me or You, there is only unity and being one, the duality is lifted.
This is the language of true being, this is the language through which we communicate with existence. These moments are not thinking, No Mind, meditation – our first taste of eternity, a shimmer of the divine. It is the language of LOVE, but we have forgotten this language.
„Learn the language of love! It is the language of being present together, the language of the heart, our innermost truth.“
We have acquired an artificial language, a foreign language. This language dominates us, it is the language of words. It fulfills the needs of the everyday, however, when dealing with a higher level of consciousness, it is of no more use to us.
The Fifth Key: Ego or „Character“
Ego or Character means to have a rigid structure, character means past and a certain trained discipline. character means, you are not free anymore, you are not spontaneous and that you follow the rules of society. The character, or the ego is our programming.
„Free yourself from Ego, lrelease yourself from your character, break through your armour. Be flexible and spontaneous and live from moment to moment. This does not mean to live recklessley or irresponsibly , but more responsibly, because this means more fully consciously.„