Tantra: Transcendence, World Affirmation, Ecstasy and Bliss

Much confusion has been spread around about what Tantra is. Common questions that come up are “You mean like Tantric sex?” or “Tantra, that is all about sex, right?” Well not quite. To say such a thing is like claiming that every bicycle is a Schwinn. Yes there is an element of sex, or sexuality that is within Tantra, but at the same time this is not the sole purpose.

When asked what Tantra is there can often be confusion because Tantra is not a method that could be described, but more an experience. Where Tantra is unique to most Indian spiritual practices is that it is heavily female centered. It is an Indian practice where a lot Yogi’s, Swami’s, or Guru’s are in fact women. Because of this Tantra will have a different view of Moksha than most Indian traditions. In general Moksha would be liberation from the physical world. Your average Tantrist would define Moksha as liberation from separation of the mental, physical, and spiritual world. Because Tantra is based heavily on feminine principles there is an emphasis on eliminating binaries dualities. This could be male and female, Higher or Lower, Left or right, mind or body, Spiritual and Material ect. The purpose of Tantra is to eliminate the binary within these terms as these are terms that intensive agrarian societies have used as a way of control. Instead Tantra strives for complimentary opposites.

So what is Tantra? The best way for me to describe it is that it is a goal to get to a state of being that is a combination of ecstasy and bliss. Were reason is good, but not everything is limited to it. Where the conscious self observes all reason, thought, feeling, and desire so that all will be directed in ways that are beneficial to the practitioner, so that you do not have to be some great ascetic to attain inner stillness or enlightenment.

The compatibility with Tantra to Syntheism is that the view of God is not something separate from Nature or oneself.  The purpose of Tantra is to see all existence as sacred.  To see us as the very universe exploring itself.  Since there is little difference between spiritual atheism and pantheism, and since Syntheism does not separate between spirit and matter, the goal of Moksha as I described above would be something that a Syntheist could apply to their daily lives.  If for no other reason than most Syntheists live in a culture based on duality and such a practice could help the Syntheist unlearn this cultural conditioning that he/she has been brought up with.

Many people and practitioners that come to Tantra have their spiritual and material goals connected. Tantra for many people who experience it (as it is not for everyone) increases ones charisma, charm, and compassion as well as reason. At the same time aiding in personal relationships, be they romantic, friendships, family, or business. The idea is that desire, passion, and even the ego are not bad in and of themselves, but are aspects of our being that need to be directed. Through being conscious of these very aspects of our being we can be better at accomplishing our duty or “darma” in this world and eliminate boundaries to the service we can give the world. That every mundane endeavor is in fact a spiritual one and through our duty we bring happiness and peace to the world we live.


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About Kenneth

I am an anthropology student at UCR. As well I am a poet and writer. I am interested in states of consciousness, whether through chemically preturbing the brain, or just meditation. I have discovered recently though that a lot of times when someone describes a meditation as equivalent or like a Psychedelic drug, for the purposes of mental safety, you are better off taking the drug. Let’s just say there is a reason why George Harrison stoped doing TM.

I love comic books. Particularly the more Psychedelic kind like the Silver Surfer, Green Lantern, and Doctor Strange, as well as anything by Neil Gaiman, Alan Moore, and Grant Morrison. I am also fascinated with 50’s literature, and Jazz. To me the two go hand in hand. From Allen Ginsberg, Aldous Huxely, Henry Miller, Herman Hesse, to Kerouac, all these are forms of art that have done much to promote the progressive mind and awake us from the wild hallucination of the American Dream.

In a spiritual sense I am a non-theist, as well as a pantheist. For purposes of art and poetry I have leanings to polytheism, as it is good for the imagination. However I do not care whether God or gods are real, but the insight that such experiences whether real or a figment of my mind can teach me. Therefore, I use the term non-theist. I tend to incorporate the impersonal aspects of Scandinavian spirituality in my daily life. I am also inspired by Zoroastrianism, and practice Tripura Tantra.