Yesterday I watched a short video that addresses this question from the perspective of Caffyn Jesse, a lovely local Tantra and Sexuality teacher and practitioner. Honestly, because I was in the middle of a meeting about my upcoming Tantric Massage video shoot, I didn’t get to finish the video. However, I found myself thinking about this question last night.
To define Tantra is impossible. Of course, this is just my humble opinion. Tantra in the West has a tendency to be quite different from Eastern Tantra. In addition, there are likely as many Tantric perspectives as their are individuals practicing Tantra (either in their professional or personal life). With this in mind, how do we, as Westerners, begin to understand this vast, complex and incredibly dynamic topic?
For me, the answer is simple. Everything I do…whether in my personal life or my professional life that is related to Tantra…I call “Tantra-Inspired”. As for an official definition:
- A Hindu or Buddhist mystical or ritual text.
- Adherence to the doctrines of the tantras, involving mantras, meditation, yoga, and ritual.
In Sanskrit, Tantra is defined as a system of techniques, but there are also a number of additional definitions. Tantra means: weaving, happiness, theory, doctrine, scientific work and more. As you can see, us Westerners who desire a specific definition of Tantra are still left wondering what is Tantra? When we take the time to read texts related to Tantra, we can only begin to grasp the true meaning or core principles of Tantra.
I had a lovely session with an East Indian couple a year or so ago. The male partner was raised with Tantra education as an integral part of his life. He studied with incredible masters and contained within his mind a vast amount of deep knowledge on the topic. Unfortunately, when he tried to incorporate Tantra into his sex life, he was unable to transmute his mental teachings into physical expression. I find this so interesting. Many Western Tantric Practitioners were not raised with Tantra as an integral aspect of our lives; we did not train with Eastern Masters, yet we are able to integrate the core principles and intentions of Tantra into our sex lives.
From what I have researched and been told about East Indian culture, their society is very abstinence based. In the West, unless we are raised in a strict Catholic or Christian based community or home, our culture is steeped with sexually charged messages. It is generally considered a part of teenage life to lose one’s virginity. In fact, 80 percent of men and 75 percent of women lose their virginity by age 19!
After rolling around in the sack with various partners, we often find ourselves seeking something deeper and more meaningful. If we happen to find the Western interpretation of Tantric sex; beautiful soul-moving, earth shattering orgasms experienced while sharing a deeply intimate connection with our lovers…we’re hooked. Indeed, we become hooked on Tantra. As a woman who has not only practiced my own version of Tantra-inspired sex, but also facilitated hundreds of (non-sexual) Tantra sessions with men, women and couples from all walks of life, I too am hooked:-)
If you also want to learn more about Tantra, or want to integrate Tantra into your life, you are in the right place at the right time. Tantra is soaking into the roots of our sexually charged, yet also sexually dissatisfied and often times dysfunctional Western culture. We are bathing in Tantra and massaging Tantra into our bodies while climbing to unprecedented states of orgasmic bliss. Why? Because it’s a truly divine experience. As far as an experiential, hands on art form…Tantric-inspired sex is my favourite.
That’s all she wrote, but I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic! From my heart to yours, elusive Miss Joy…