What Tantra is NOT
I hear this all the time, "Tantra? That's about the sex, right?". Well... yes. But mostly, no. Or sometimes I hear this, "Oh, you must meditate all the time!". Not exactly. Meditation is a beautiful practice that you can use to help uncover the present moment. But it's about so much more than just sitting still with your eyes closed. Occasionally, I hear this, "I don't have a partner so I can't practice Tantra". Screeeeech! This one is downright false! You need to learn the mindset of Tantra on your own before doing it with a partner will make much sense! So, sit back while I try to lay out what Tantra really is.
The reason why it's so hard to define is that Tantra is a state of mind. To practice Tantra is to find your inner bliss in the present moment. No matter what is going on, you find joy in the now. But this could mean so many different things to so many people. That's why you'll find all sorts of definitions about what Tantra really is. But if you strip away most of it, it comes down to the connection and bliss you find here now. Tantra is your divine connection to the present moment.
Tantra is a Sanskrit word. Tan means expansion (pronounced tun). Tra mean an instrument. A literal instrument of expansion. Now, you can't just look at an instrument and hope you'll learn it. Instruments are designed to be used! You can't make music if you just worship the guitar! Tantra is experiential! In order to understand it you must use it!
Buddha once said that too many people worship the teapot instead of drinking the tea, and he is absolutely right. You can't just read about Tantra, or see Tantra, or hear about Tantra. You MUST experience it in order to find out what it truly is.
I invite you to play the instrument. To drink the tea. To experience Tantra.
Gratitude. It's so hard to live out of the present if you are thankful. Do you have a roof over your head? Did you eat today? Can you get unlimited water out of your faucet? Do you have an animal in your life who cares about you? We are surrounded by things to be thankful for! Dig in deep here. Tell the universe all the things you are truly thankful for!
Breath. Take in an inhale through your nose for 5 seconds. Don't hold it, and exhale for 5 seconds. Don't hold it. Keep going in and out evenly and slowly. By synching with the breath you can enter the present.
Movement. Put on your favorite music and dance! Or just shake. Or in silence you can move however your body wants to move. Movement can get you out of the mind and into the body. And when you are in the body, you are in the present.
Sound. Why are so many people afraid to make noise? Are we afraid people will know we are human? Because sound is so utterly human! Remind yourself of just how human you are by making sound! Let out a big sigh on your exhales. Chant a certain note or word. Let out a yell! Do whatever you want to make a big sound. When you vibrate the throat chakra it can deliver you to the present!
INSPIRED ACTION: Add these all together. You can breathe and make sound. You can have gratitude and dance. The more you add the more you will be propelled to the now. Try it and take note of how you feel.