The Back Story
Tantra & Yoga
what is yoga?
Yoga is a science extensively developed into a unique system to help humans learn to control their mind through the journey of the lower self to the higher self. It is a way to cultivate your body, mind, and spirit in order to find communion with God. A person who practices yoga is called a yogi. Yoga scriptures teach that a person’s greatest journey is the path back to their creator, but one must rid himself of the illusions of the mind in order to do that.
“The word yoga is derived from the Sanskrit root word “yuj” meaning to bind, join, attach and yoke, to direct one’s attention on, to use and apply. It also means union or communion. It is the true union of our will with God’s will.”
–Light on Yoga
“Yoga is the journey of the Self, through the Self, to the Self.”
what is tantra?
Tantra is from two words: Tanoti; to expand and Trayati; to liberate.
Tantra Yoga: That which expands the limited world of the Ego (little/lower self) to the unlimited world of the big self (higher self)
Tan: to stretch, Tantra “to web or loom” -The Wheels of LifeThe core experience of Tantra is the sexual secrets. Tantra is a philosophy, a science, an art and a way of life whereby sexual energy is consciously and creatively utilized.
- Sexual Secrets
Tantra is an A.D. term, but the teachings of the science date back from a time that preceded the origins of the classical form of yoga. These teachings came from a time when the world was less patriarchal, more matri-focal, and the feminine divine was seen equally as important as the masculine. Tantra is a science of weaving all aspects of life towards one path to liberation. There are no great aversions to life or attachments on your path to the higher self. In fact, the idea is to find the connection between the polarities of life in order to grow stronger and wiser. In seeing all aspects of life as divine, you seek to learn from every life experience with true gratitude for the human experience. Instead of the focus being transcendence through extreme discipline, the idea is to ascend through true understanding of all aspects of who you are.
In Tantra,the body is seen as a sacred vehicle to be treasured and used for the soul to learn and evolve, instead of a hindrance that is cursed by sin and constantly keeping us from communion with God. Even in classical yoga, it teaches that the enlightened yogi realizes that union with God can only come from within. The journey back to the creator is not about constantly looking outside of oneself to a heavenly entity, but ridding your mind of all illusions so that you can experience the union that has always been there. The body is just not seen as a creation of God’s, but a reflection of the divine and a microcosm of the universe.