When we talk about tantra, we refer to the ancient esoteric teachings of Hinduism and Buddhism that evolved in India thousands of years ago. The word tantra, literally meaning “tantric” or “etiological”, in the Indian cultural traditions refers to any systematic, generally accepted “text, philosophy, system, technique or exercise” used for the cultivation of spiritual and erotic love, energy and wisdom. It incorporates aspects of yoga and meditation, but it is important to note that tantra is not merely a vehicle by which to explore these concepts. Rather, tantra has the power to offer its practitioners a complete and holistic answer to sexuality. As such, it is an indispensable aspect of any culture and religious practice.
When a tantra teacher leads his students through tantra meditation and contemplation, he or she often starts by focusing on the breathing process. During this time he or she will become mindful of both the breath and the emotional response each breath generates. The goal is to create a connection between the two – to learn how to connect our entire being to our intimate partner. It’s important to note that the physical aspects of sexual expression are not to be ignored in this connection, as the breath and energy flow during tantric energy work is crucial to allowing the physical to merge with the spiritual.
From the point of view of the conscious mind, there is little difference between the act of sex and a religious service. However, this is not so when the intention is to awaken a higher spiritual state in one’s partner. This is why tantra for couples sessions must focus on breath and emotion. A tantra teacher can take his student through a series of meditation exercises which allow him or her to become fully aware of every sensation of the body experiences during sex. This awareness allows the tantra student to focus all of one’s energy into the connection between him or her and their partner.
The second aspect of tantra for couples involves the connection of the tantric energy and the conscious mind. This happens during the tantric meditation exercises. Once the student has become fully aware of his or her breathing and that all thoughts come to rest in deep satisfaction, the student steps into the right hand position in which the left leg is placed flat on the floor, with the knees bent and feet crossed. The right hand is placed on the stomach. In another word, the tantra teacher places his hands in the right position, leaving the left free for other movements.
When the tantra master has achieved the right mental state, he or she then begins the process of tantra power – connecting the conscious mind to the tantric energy. During this time, the student feels a blissful state of happiness as he or she is drawn into the tantric energy. At this time, it is also possible to sense the awakening in all levels of communication and life force. In the tantric arts, this stage is referred to as the tantra power stage. Once this stage has been reached by both partners, the process of tantra union commences.
Connecting the breath and the energy flow is done through meditation techniques such as pranayama and asana. By meditating on the breath and the energy flow at the same time, both partners are brought into a state of ultimate satisfaction and bliss. The entire process is then guided by the tantric principles. The ultimate aim of this process is for both partners to achieve union with each other and become the masters of this divine energy.