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Tantric Sex: Here’s Everything You Need to Know

Emily Stewart
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What comes to mind when you hear the word “Tantra”? An epic free-love orgy? Many would assume so. Yet Tantric sex is actually the science and art of sacred sex, rooted in the philosophies of Tantra. Unfortunately, common misconceptions of Tantra reduce this powerful spiritual practice to superficial sexual endeavors.
 

What is Tantra?

Yogani, author of Advanced Yoga Practices: Easy Lessons for Ecstatic Living, explains, “In Tantric sex, we are learning to engage in sex for the purpose of cultivating energy upward . . . Spiritual cultivation of sexual energy first, orgasm second.”
 
In yogic philosophy, upward energy is called “Prana.” The greatest amount of Prana is stored between the hips, at the base of the spine. Tantric sex, simply put, is the practice of withholding orgasm so that practitioners can last longer.
 

Tantra transforms sex into a meditative experience, a blissful union lasting hours, days, or years (as legend has it).

 
Feminists, rejoice! Tantric sex is a fundamentally equalizing practice. Some believe that masculine repression of women is related to men’s subconscious recognition of female sexual superiority. In Tantric sex, you put your partner’s pleasure before your own, to enjoy long-lasting lovemaking.
 
While Tantric sex is about merging one’s sex life with their spiritual pursuits, it is not a requirement for enlightenment. “For those who are light to moderate in their sex life, there is not a great necessity to introduce yogic methods like Tantra to sexual relations, although learning Tantric sex will enhance lovemaking and the rest of your yoga practices as well,” Yogani states.
 
If you’re interested in learning how yoga can enhance your sex drive, read 10 Yoga Poses to Increase Your Sex Drive.
 

A Brief History of Tantric Sex

Tantra is based on the same principles as the asana (physical yoga poses) that yogis practice in studios. In ancient Eastern scriptures called The Vedas, “Tantra” means to “weave or expand.”
 

Through Tantra, sex becomes an expression of divine union.

 
Philosophically, “Tantra” means to weave beliefs, experience, spiritual practices, and yoga practices together to connect with yourself, others, and the universe. Rather than viewing things as black and white or good and bad, Tantra emphasizes the connectivity of all things. And Tantrism regards sensuality as a conduit for consciousness.
 
Nearly every society has deemed sex as something personal, dangerous, and secretive. So, Tantric Sex was never widely accepted. In the 1960s, Tantra became known as the “yoga of sex,” reducing the meaning of Tantric Sex to something like “ecstatic sex,” “spiritual sex,” or even, “more sex.” Actually, Tantric sex is about ritual, pleasure, and awareness.
 

 
 

How to Try Tantric Sex

Modern interpretations of Tantra rely on the wisdom that we each have masculine and feminine energy inside us.
 
Here’s your Tantric Sex starter kit to cultivate more sensual and spiritual relationships with yourself and others. Adjust the steps below according to your sexual preferences:
 

Set the Scene

Tantra is about ritual. Begin your Tantra practice by creating the right physical environment: light soft-smelling candles and burn incense then prepare a tray of strawberries or light fare and open a bottle of wine. Arrive freshly bathed, with soft skin. Then, prepare the mind.
 
Curious about the types of food you can eat to increase your libido? Step aside oysters . . . here are 11 aphrodisiac foods to try tonight.
 
Sit together and look deeply into one another’s eyes. Imagine the connection between each of your chakras as bright energetic lights merging together.
 

Dive In

After mental arousal comes physical arousal. Start in a sex position where you can look into your partner’s eyes. The man gently enters the woman at random intervals to tease his partner and retain his energy.
 
Also called “the valley method,” this involves a slow build-up toward an eventual peak. For her part, the woman coaxes the man along.
 

Blocking

For those who struggle to contain their enthusiasm, blocking is the next-best option. Just before the man is about to ejaculate, he puts pressure onto his perineum with two fingers, pressing inward and forward to block the urethra channel. While the man will still feel orgasmic convulsions, he will not lose sperm, and will therefore retain some Prana, allowing him to continue.
 

Coax Your Partner to Ecstasy

While the primary role of the female in Tantra is to “coax” a man’s interest and then to “teach” him how to practice thoughtful intercourse, she also uses her own physical methods. By tightening and releasing the pelvic floor muscles (also known as Kegels), the woman can aid her man in climbing and descending the valleys of passion. Traditional Tantric teachers call this “milking.”
 

Find Divine Union With Tantra

It is undoubtedly exciting to think that one’s sex life might merge with their spiritual practices. Yet, Tantra requires patience and commitment from partners who are already tuned-in and open.
 
As Yogani says, “Tantric sex is not something we do to get ourselves to become more sexually active. It is something we can do to improve our [spiritual connection during sex] if we are already sexually active.”
 

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Emily Stewart

Emily Stewart calls herself a “Pi-Fit-Yogi,” teaching yoga, Pilates, and blended classes all around the world. She’s hosting a sailing + yoga retreat in Malta in August, 2016. Want to see the bluest ocean kiss the bluest sky while OM-ing between white sails? Learn more about Emily's retreat at hotyogamalta.com

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