What is Tantra?

Tantra is an old Sanskrit word derived from the two words tan (thread, tissue) and tra (tool, instrument).  Accordingly, Tantra can be translated as “a doctrine that interweaves different energies of female and male, of yin and yang, with each other.” Tantra also denotes the personal extension of one’s own boundaries and consciousness and the connection with one’s own essence and self divinity (Shiva & Shakti).

The body is worshiped as a temple of the soul, not devalued or tabooed.  Love, sexuality and spirituality form a unity that leads to an expansion of consciousness and an enlargement of personal possibilities.

Tantra is at the same time a practical and spiritual way of experiencing the joy and expansion of one’s own potential which includes physicality, sensuality as well as sexuality and uses this experience for inner and outer development.

Tantra has existed since at least 2700 BC. Early Tantra, which began in India, is older than yoga.  It emerged from a mixture of Buddhist and Hindu beliefs and is understood to have formed a countermovement to religious asceticism.  In contrast to those religions it consciously incorporates sexuality.  While sexuality is suppressed by asceticism in almost all religions as well as in Yoga, Tantra uses human sexual energy and transforms it to revive and to consciously steer using Tantra’s special techniques and aids.

Tantra, like yoga, is a method designed to increase spiritual awareness with the goal of transformation to enlightenment. Instead of asceticism and discipline which play a major role in yoga, Tantra takes the path of ecstasy and conscious enjoyment.  Tantra is neither a religion nor a philosophy and it is not possible to approach Tantra through reason or belief.

The search for an expanded and conscious sexuality on the one hand and for deeper spiritual experiences on the other is attracting more and more people to Tantra.  Love and sexuality which are often divided in today’s society are reunited through Tantra.

The modern dilemma: Our soul (inner being, higher self) has decided to materialise on earth as a human being.  Each of us has a very specific reason why he or she is here.  When we were born we still knew about this intention, we were still connected with the ‘All That Is’ … the existence … however this link can become broken through the conditioning of our society which results in us losing our roots.

The whole of creation is a constant celebration, an everlasting joy.  Our birthright is health, freedom, joy and happiness.  We are here on this earth to gain experience, To develop and grow and to make use of our unique skills and talents.  

In our busy modern world we humans live like strangers.  We have forgotten how to be with creation and how to be in contact with ourselves.  We have forgotten who we are, why we are here and what is our real purpose in life.  We miss the creation/existence/contact with our true selves because we prioritise thinking. The mind cuts us off from our connection with creation.  By over thinking, analysing, interpreting and philosophising everything we are increasingly misleading ourselves and moving further and further away from true reality.  The more thoughts we have (consciously and unconsciously we think about 80,000 untrue thoughts every day) the harder it becomes to keep a clear view of why we are really here.  Our thoughts come from our mind and from the past experiences and from all the fearful social conditioning that we are bombarded with on a daily basis. Thinking is just not the appropriate language for allowing us to connect with our true reality.

So what is the appropriate language?

The language of peaceful silence, of non-thinking, the language of love, being in the here and now …. the language of the heart and of intuition.  That is our innermost truth.  Tantra says (see Osho): ‘Learn the language of love, silence and orgasm. During orgasm we are disconnected from thinking for just a few seconds, we are out of our head, beyond the mind.  For those few seconds, we are back in touch with the whole thing.  During orgasm we feel the oneness of being ‘at one with everything’. Tantra reminds us that what happens at that highest moment is the language that connects us with our existence.’

In the early 1980s, the Indian sage Osho introduced Tantra to the West.  According to the Dalai Lama, ‘Tantra is of tremendous importance, especially at the present time of human history.  Because a new person is just about to be born, a new consciousness is knocking on our doors.’(Quote of 3.2.1983)

The tantric path can help us to become more alive, to appreciate, to free ourselves enabling us to live with our sexual power as the original life force. Tantra can help us find, in each area of ​​our life (health, relationships, sexuality, work, leisure, creativity, etc.) a new meaning and greater fulfilment!

Tantra assumes that every person is already perfect, whole and free.  Each of us already has everything we need, within ourselves! These words sound so simple but they seem to be hard to implement because no one has taught us that whithin each of us we really do have everything we need for a fulfilling life.

If you decide to take the tantric path you are deciding to open your heart leaving old injuries and disappointments behind.  You are choosing to love yourself and love life which in turn is the prerequisite for loving relationships with other people.

Tantra today is about liberating sexuality from unconscious conditioning and fixed misconceptions.  Tantra should not create any dogmas only a greater inner freedom.

Osho describes Tantra as the way of acceptance (extract from his correspondent book):  ‘Tantra assumes that everyone inside is good. Tantra says that everyone is born as a good person; Goodness is our nature.  You are already good!  You need a natural unfolding but no shaping from the outside.  That’s why nothing is bad.  Even though when anger is there, when lust is there, when greed is there, Tantra regards it all as good.  The only thing missing is that you are not centered, not in your midst; therefore you can not use these energies.  When you are inwardly present, anger is healthy.  Everything that exists is good.  Everything is holy, nothing is evil.  Tantra knows no devil, only divine BEING.  According to Tantra, when you accept your being as a whole, it transforms, then suddenly everything fits in and comes to its right place.  Without trying to eliminate something from your being your whole being will be reorganized.  Through your acceptance and affirmation everything arranges itself anew.  Where previously there was a loud roar inside, a melody, a new harmony arises. Tantra says:  Accept whatever you are.  You are a great mystery of many different, multidimensional energies.  Accept that and follow every single energy with deep sensitivity, awareness, love and understanding. Always move with YOU then every desire becomes a vehicle that transports you beyond, every energy becomes an aid. Then this world is divine and the body a temple, a holy temple, a holy place.’