The Ancient Philosophy of Tantra

The world has musician Sting to thank for the resurgence of interest in Tantra. He boasted about the long sessions of sexual intercourse he had after studying the ancient ways. However this religion encompasses more things than just sex. This religion has deep roots in philosophy and worship.

Tantra is a type of religion that was once popular in Sanskrit circles. Shakti is the main god and anyone who worships Shakti is regarded as a Tantric follower. Followers believe that the universe was created because of divine energy and that Shakti takes care of the world. They also believe that humans have parts of this energy within themselves and by channeling that energy they become more spiritual, creative and in touch with their surroundings.

The basic belief focuses on the prana, which is the divine energy or power. They believe that this power exists in all forms, including inside each person. By harnessing that energy, they can achieve their own goals be it spiritual or physical. Gurus help each follower harness their power and focus their energies. They utilize different tools to make this happen.

One of their greatest tools is yoga. Tantra focuses on the idea that the body has different chakras located within it, though many of these aren’t used. Those who meditate and focus on their body while doing yoga can harness the power of their chakra and center themselves. The heart and head are both examples of chakra. They also use mantras or chanting during yoga, which allows them to clear their mind and focus only on their goals or what they want.

The idea of sexuality in Tantra is often misunderstood. Originally sex was a means of helping an individual connect to the universe, rather than for pleasure. This same belief is used today in that Tantric sex is more about connecting with a higher power than seeking pleasure. There’s a belief that love or reverence must come into play in that the male reveres the woman’s body and her power. At one time monks following Tantra claimed that the female body was the human equivalent of a goddess.

Tantra involves different types of religious texts. There are three main texts used: Shaiva Agamas, Vaishnava Panceratra Samhitas and Shakta Tantras. All of their texts fall into one of these categories, but there’s no clear reason for the division. Followers often study the works under their guru when they first become involved in the religion.

Those following Tantra also believe in something known as the Nathas. These are individuals who can trace their bloodline back to ancient followers and gurus in the religion. A small number of these people serve as gurus in their own right, but a larger number don’t even follow Tantra. They do place emphasis on deities such as Shamvara and Ghantapa.

Resources on Tantra include:

Tantra involves a lot of complex thoughts and ideas. It goes well beyond sexual intercourse and dating, and encourages followers to make a spiritual connection. The basic premise relies on the deep, spiritual connection that each individual has with the greater universe.

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