Do you associate the word ‘Tantra’ with hippies, orgies, promiscuity and marathon sex sessions? Or, perhaps, that Sex & The City episode comes to mind — you know, the one where Charlotte is worried about her skills in the bedroom, so the girls end up in a very hands-on tantric sex class?
Here’s the truth: while skirting around the topic of tantric sex, pop culture references to the practice aren’t an accurate reflection of Tantra.
The Western interpretation of Tantra is very different from the origins of the practice. At its core, Tantra is a tradition where awakening is pursued through embodiment and union is sought through relationship and intimacy. Sexual union is just one of the vehicles towards this awakening — and it’s the one that the West focuses on. The Tantric discipline also deals with allowing all feelings to be met with equal acceptance, and for each person to become deeply sensitive to what they are feeling.
When it comes to Tantric sex, we can all learn from this practice and bring its foundations into the bedroom, including you. Here’s how:
It starts with you.
You don’t need to have a partner to practice Tantra. Tantra isn’t just about sex — it’s a way of living that celebrates sexuality. Tantra encourages the individual to cultivate a deep inner union with themselves, allowing them to feel completely whole. When we feel whole, we can enter a union without asking our partner to fill up our cup (because our cup is already overflowing!). To practice Tantra, start by committing to joy and connection in your life as an individual.
Set the scene.
To create a sacred space for meaningful, connected tantric sex, put effort into creating a special area to be intimate in. This could mean investing in beautiful linen, lighting a candle or even finding an awe-inspiring (private) place in nature.
Focus on connection.
Relaxation, breath, eye contact, uninhibited creativity and heart to heart connection are some of the core pillars of tantric sex; if that sounds like a lot, start small. Could you do some deep, belly breathing before you start to foster a feeling of relaxation? Could you make more of an effort to make eye contact with your partner during sex? Could you spend time imagining your heart radiating outwards towards your partner? Could you be more adventurous? Don’t worry about getting everything ‘right’ on your tantric sex journey — you can start by focusing on one area. The key? Just start.