What The Hell Is Tantra?

When people hear the word Tantra, they usually think of sex, but years ago I met someone who changed my view of this ancient word. I was hiking up a mountain in the Himalayas with a few friends when we bumped into a baba (spiritual holy man) who informed us through sign language that he had taken a vow of silence in order to find God. We spent countless hours with this man over the next few days, and eventually discovered that he was also a flesh eating baba. “You eat human flesh,” we all seemed to asked in unison and total disbelief. He excitedly nodded “YES!” as he mimed eating his own arm and foot. Turns out this guy was an aghori baba, which is a certain type of tantric practitioner who does totally bizarre practices, such as eating the flesh of a dead person and not speaking, in order to realize their own true nature as God, which is the essence of Tantra. Because sex offers us an opportunity to merge into bliss during orgasm and transcend our egos, it’s become the most well known tantric practice, (and certainly one of my own personal favorites ?). But Tantra is way more than eating flesh or having sex.

In fact there are so many different versions and practices and angles it’s hard to pin it down. But what I love is that it’s the only form of spirituality that actively includes all of my favorite things like touch, energy play, communication, intimacy, vulnerability, sexuality and finding our authentic YESes and NOs. in fact it includes everything as it is the celebration of both our divinity and our humanness. No matter what is happening, good times, challenges, highs, lows, ups , downs, sex or flesh munching, it is a portal to remember that we are a miraculous intelligence crammed into a human body on an adventure. Perhaps God got bored with eternal paradise and wanted to spice it up a bit… and Here we are! Tantra is definitely way more than the physical act of having sex, it is being empowered to make love to every moment in this strange orgasmic experiment called life.


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