I recently had the opportunity to share some insights about tantra for an online periodical. Tantra is not my area of expertise; however, I believe there are many commonalities between tantra and the RPM as described below all which point to a healthy, robust approach to our sexuality.
1. What is tantra? Is it a spiritual practice? What does Tantra mean in Sanskrit? Among the meanings for tantra in Sanskrit is ‘weaving together’ or ‘the expansion of consciousness’ achieved through practicing meditation, yoga, solo and paired sex. Tantra is a path to enlightenment, a holistic development of the mind, body, and senses through breathwork, massage, and slow sexual stimulation.
2. How can you practice tantric masturbation? Does meditation tie in? Meditation, calming of the mind, focusing of the breath set the stage for mindfully delving into tantric style masturbation which involves exploring erogenous zones of the body and slowly massaging the genitals to cultivate and circulate sexual energy throughout the body(sensate focus) without necessarily reaching full body orgasm, known as ‘edging orgasms’. Through tantric masturbation, the practitioner is reaping the benefits of stimulation of the endocrine and nervous systems; increasing vigor, stamina, and vitality; and cultivating self-love and confidence.
3. How does conscious breathing tie into this type of self-intimacy? How does this enhance your pleasure? By practicing Tantric masturbation, breathing is more expansive and deeper which relaxes smooth muscles and increases blood flow responsible for the swelling of the clitoris, labia, and penis. Conscious breathing also enhances our sensate focus and awareness of the sensations of arousal and euphoria.
4. What’s the goal of tantra? Is there a goal? Tantra is a discipline designed to expand consciousness, to enrich awareness and appreciation of self and others, to create deeper bonds and understanding with a partner, and is ultimately conducive to self-transformation and self-realization.