Any headline about sex is sure to get us all clicking - we just can't resist and here you are!
Sex is profitable; lack of sex even more profitable. Sex as a beautiful way to express love to someone special is yesterday's news.
Sex is the most popular three letter word on the planet - even more than God on the internet search engines.
Tantra and anything else that purports to make us all more attractive with additional sexual prowess must be worth investigating. There are no limits to the alluring promises made by companies who sell us products or makeovers to improve our sex lives.
Any sexual problem can apparently be solved with magic pills, potions, accessories and even surgery.
I am in Florida at the moment. Radio stations are advertising 'designer vagina' loans - 0% down with 3 year repayment periods!
Was I dreaming and did I really type that? No and Yes!
What is Tantra?
Many people believe that tantra is a way to enhance sexual performance and gratification. Tantra is in fact a vast subject which is a series of rituals and practices.
In Sanskrit, tan means "expansion" or "continuation" and tra means "liberation". We know that the common meaning of yoga is union. So Tantra Yoga means to expand our spiritual awareness to be in union with the Universe, God or the Divine. Tantra is written about in the Four Vedas, an ancient scripture over 5000 years old. It represents outer and inner worship through rituals and worship.
There are over 190 tantric texts. The five principles of tantra, panchamakara or panchatattvas, if misinterpreted and taken literally, encourage the consumption of alcohol, meat, fish, roasted or fried food and sex. The latter has lead to a thriving industry - Tantric Sex.
Tantra is a highly advanced spiritual science and not a tool to be misused for increasing sexual gratification. It is an ancient discipline that provides a deep learning and understanding of life - a way to attain the truth.
In its highest form tantra is like yoga - the path of meditation. Like yoga it should not be practised without having a highly advanced teacher. Through tantra and yoga, realisation comes of the endless union between body and soul - the soul is intertwined with the body (which is misinterpreted as sexual intercourse) maintaining its life through inhalation. Union with the Divine through the soul in every breath is the real act of love. It has nothing to do with sex.
I can hear you sighing with disappointment now. Sorry!
Because the world is obsessed with sex, clever 'teachers' find a way to tap into that energy and charge others for the pleasure.
It is true that experienced yoga or meditation practitioners can concentrate their energy and breathing in a certain way to increase sexual performance. But overactivity in any chakra is not beneficial. By only focussing on the Swadisthana chakra (around the sexual organs) we can create imbalance to our mental, emotional or physical health.
Authentic yoga and meditation techniques naturally relax and purify the mind and body leading to many benefits arising in all departments! Meditation also promotes love so logically we can become better lovers.
Anyone who practises tantra to have more sexual pleasure should beware.
Bhoga, which is Sanskrit for enjoyment in the world, if overdone, can lead to roga which is disease. Hopefully before roga, the person comes to real yoga - union and bliss with absolute consciousness.
David Green has meditated for 20 years. He is an experienced Kriya Yoga practitioner.