by 200-hour Purple Lotus Yoga student
Tantra is a Sanskirt word meaning “weaving” and “expansion.” Its purpose is to achieve complete control of oneself and all the forces of nature, thus attaining union with the cosmos and the divine.
The coupling of Shiva and Shakti represent the ultimate unity of the Divine. Tantra is a quest for spiritual perfection and magical power. It’s spiritual practices and rituals aim to bring about an inner realization truth, freedom from ignorance and rebirth through divine consciousness.
Tantric ritual practices include mantras, yantras and identification with deities. Mantras and yantras are instruments to invoke deities such as Shiva and Kali. This is also practiced in other Hindu and Buddhist yoga traditions.
Tantra, being a development of early Hindu-Vedic thought, embraced the Hindu gods and goddesses, especially Shiva and Shakti, along with the Advaita philosophy that each represents an aspect of the ultimate Para Shiva, or Brahman.
Tantra also includes secret rituals which may contain any or all of the elements of ordinary ritual either directly or substituted along with other sensate rites and themes such as a feast, coitus, charnel grounds (death, transition) and defecation, urination and vomiting.
It is said that the entire universe was created through the erotic union of Shiva and Shakti. All living things emanate their holy dance of consciousness and energy.
The Tantric practice carries within its essence a non judgmental understanding of the limitations imposed by the always subjective and relative “morality” and their full acceptance of the physical vehicle as an extraordinary accellerant rather then a hindrance to spiritual evolution.
This attitude of inclusive embracement of all sides of the human experience as they progress towards the enlightenment through ecstasy, allows Tantrics to access dimensions of consciousness altering ecstasy, magick and life flow, rarely, if ever achieved by any other spiritual discipline.