What is Tantra? How are different forms of Tantric practiced categorized?
What might a Tantric Playshop look like?
Tantra is an ancient spiritual practice that originated in India thousands of years ago. It is a holistic approach to life that combines physical, mental, and spiritual practices to awaken one's consciousness and achieve a state of union with the divine.
Contrary to popular belief, tantra is not just about sex. While sexuality is a part of it, tantra is a much broader concept that encompasses a wide range of practices, including meditation, yoga, breathwork, and ritual.
Tantra emphasizes the importance of living in the present moment, cultivating awareness and mindfulness, and embracing all aspects of human experience - the good, the bad, and the ugly. It is a path of transformation and self-discovery that leads to greater joy, fulfillment, and connection with oneself, others, and the universe.
Tantra is a spiritual practice that involves the use of meditation, physical postures, and mantras to achieve enlightenment. Tantra can be divided into different colors such as white, pink, red, and black. Each color of tantra represents a different approach to spiritual practice and has different goals.
1. White Tantra - White Tantra is spiritually focused and meditative form of tantra. It is focused on the purification of the mind and body, and the attainment of spiritual enlightenment. White tantra is typically practiced in a group setting and involves the use of mantras, meditation, and breathing techniques. An example of a white tantra practice is Kundalini Yoga.
2. Pink Tantra - Pink Tantra is a form of tantra that emphasizes emotional and spiritual connection between partners. It is focused on opening the heart chakra and cultivating intimacy and love. Pink Tantra practices can include partner yoga, breathing exercises, and meditation. An example of a Pink Tantra practice is Eye Gazing.
3. Red Tantra - Red Tantra is a form of tantra that involves sexual energy and practices. It is focused on the union and balance of energies and the attainment of sexual ecstasy. Red Tantra practices can include breathing exercises, meditation, and sexual practices. An example of a Red Tantra practice is the Kama Sutra.
4. Black Tantra - Black Tantra is the most intense and challenging form of tantra. It involves the use of powerful and dangerous practices that are designed to challenge the practitioner and push them to their limits. Black Tantra practices can include ritualistic practices, sexual energy, and meditation. An example of a Black Tantra practice is an intentionally planned and setup group ritual to attain a specific outcome.
Each of these categories of Tantra may be practiced individually or collectively with the right intentions and container.
It's important to note that Tantra is a complex and nuanced spiritual practice that cannot be fully understood by simply categorizing it into colors. Each color of tantra represents a different approach to spiritual practice, but the ultimate goal of all forms of tantra is the attainment of spiritual enlightenment.
As always, energetic consent is just as important as physical consent when it comes to practicing tantra with a partner. A tantric container is a great space to practice intimate communication and asking for what we want as well as listening to others' desires.
Find a good tantra teacher or group that can help launch your Tantric journey, or practice alone until you are ready to share or explore with partners.
Here's a sample lesson plan for what might see in a beginners' tantra class:
- Welcome and introductions
- Overview of what tantra is
- Setting intentions for the class
II. History and Philosophy of Tantra
- Origin and history of tantra
- The philosophy of tantra
- The difference between tantra and other spiritual practices
III. Breathwork and Meditation
- Introduction to breathwork and its benefits
- Guided meditation for grounding and centering
- Breathwork exercises for increasing awareness and sensitivity
IV. Tantric Techniques for Connection
- Eye gazing and its benefits
- Heart-to-heart connection exercise
- Partner yoga poses for building trust and intimacy
V. Sensual Touch and Energy Flow
- The importance of touch in tantra
- Techniques for sensual and mindful touch
- Introduction to energy flow and chakra system
- Recap of the class
- Sharing of experiences and insights
- Closing meditation and integration
Note: It's important to emphasize the importance of consent, boundaries, and respect in tantra practice. It's also recommended to have a trained and certified tantra teacher to facilitate the class.