Tantra Yoga, Chakras – What?
Following post is conributed by our guest blogger Neeharika
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Tantra is the weave or technology that connects everything in the universe. Yoga is the science that brings the microcosm (human) in resonance with the macrocosm (universe). Tantra Yoga is thus an accurate science that relies on specific techniques and practices to reach the goal of union, which results in samadhi or enlightenment.
What makes Tantra Yoga different from other forms of Yoga?
Actually … Nothing. All forms of Hatha yoga are Tantric. Anything that embraces the body and uses it as a tool in evolving is Tantric. Ancient yogis sat up in the mountains thousands of years ago and developed the asanas (physical postures) for a specific reason: To deepen their spiritual practice and speed up their evolution.
Just practising yoga stretches as part of a fitness or health routine will of course yield some holistic benefits. When we know the intricate details of how to awaken the power within us, our standard yoga practice is transformed and propels our lives in the direction of limitless possibilities, pure bliss and the grand prize of enlightenment.
In Tantra Yoga, we work with energy, shakti, kundalini. Any class will involve the conscious direction of energy to the chakras.
The chakras are main energy centres that act as vortexes through which universal consciousness penetrates.
How we receive that information depends on our level of consciousness and how receptive we are. In tantra yoga receptivity relates to how open, pure and balanced our systems are. The more tainted the energy centre, the more distorted the message coming through will be. The more open chakra is, the higher the chance of resonance.
It is through this connection that we start to see ourselves as part of a whole and start our ascent towards Self-Realization.
What can you expect in a Tantra or Chakra Yoga class?
Tantra works towards spiritual evolution and life development. An average class will move energy from the lower chakras up to the higher more spiritual ones. A class could also be dedicated to working on a specific chakra, like the heart chakra.
Classical Hatha yoga postures are used in conjunction with concentration techniques, music meditation and breathing practices that focus on directing different forms of energy to the chakras.
Staying in line with Patanjali’s recommendations on how to practice yoga, all asanas are held steady for longer lengths of time. The benefits of this on a physical level is that the body actually gets enough time to open and process the changes that have happened. It also gives us the time to quiet and steady the mind so that we can concentrate on the direction of energy and activation of the chakra.
Many other styles of yoga barely hold asanas for longer than a minute. On top of this there is a grand race to jam in as many postures into a session, not allowing enough time between postures for the real work to happen.
As the old saying goes: “Something is better than nothing.“ Having said this, we all know that cooking an organic and balanced meal at home has farther reaching benefits than a McDonald’s Happy Meal.
Can you find Tantra Yoga anywhere?
To teach Tantra Yoga you need to have spent a good amount of time studying in the presence of a self-realised guru. Tantra holds many secrets and when reading the ancient texts it can easily be misinterpreted. For this reason, the guru will deliver the teachings through a long-standing oral tradition. In this way, energy is transmitted and sacred initiations are taken. Because of this and the scarcity of authentic and traditional tantra schools, especially ones that are open to westerners, it is not easy to find tantra yoga as taught in India and Tibet.
Unfortunately, Yoga has been adjusted to “western mentality”. When prevalent Yogis first came to the west they changed the structure of their teachings so that yoga would attract more people. Initially, it was used as a tactic along the lines of “Come and try this exercise and see what benefits it brings” after which the real story of what yoga is would unfold.
In most western studios today this “real story” of what yoga is has completely fallen away. It’s all about cramming as many people into a space pushing them beyond physical limits. If the room can be heated to some bizarre temperature even better, because then at least they will feel like they worked hard. It’s more about profit and physical exercise. This is not yoga. A student cannot progress in the 8 stages of yoga if all components are not practised.
The same can be said for Tantra. If you Google Tantra right now you will see posts and pictures of what the west has labelled Neo-Tantra. What is Neo-Tantra? That’s the stuff that gets us hot under the collar and blushing when we hear the word tantra. The same as Yoga, the emphasis is on physical and sense gratification, with healing and spiritual enlightenment as a far off option for only some.
Is it for me?
Tantra Yoga is suitable for any person who wants to live the life they were born to live. That is a life of abundance, ease, prosperity, joy and love. It is our birthright to have a good life. Everything that we’ve ever dreamed of is at our fingertips.
Come and learn the Secrets of Yoga and make the magic happen.
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