Tantra yoga: origins, practice, benefits

Tantra yoga: origins, practice, benefits

Let’s find out more about Tantra Yoga, an ancient practice useful for extending human consciousness, based on the mastery of the phenomena that make up life and the enjoyment of the same.

Tantra Yoga , a useful practice for extending human consciousness, helps improve mood and decreases stress. Let’s find out better.

  • The meaning of  Tantra Yoga
  • Origins and philosophy of  Tantra Yoga
  • Practice
  • The benefits of  Tantra Yoga
  • The mantras of tantra Yoga
  • The teachers and the schools

Tantra yoga



Meaning of Tantra yoga

The Sanskrit word Tantra can be translated with the term “warp” or “weft” and is composed of the root Tan = extend, multiply , and the suffix Tra = instrument . The meaning of the term Tantra Yoga is therefore that of tools (practices, rituals) to extend human consciousness . 


The evoked image is that of the fabric, produced with the loom through the intertwining of weft and warp , a metaphor for the union of the individual consciousness with the universal one, and of the masculine with the feminine.


Origins and philosophy of  Tantra Yoga

The best known forms of yoga in the West fall under the banner of Tantra yoga : Kundalini yoga , Hatha yoga , Raja yoga , Laya yoga and Mantra yoga . In all these schools of tantric yoga, precedence is given to practices and rituals of a mainly physical type .


Tantric philosophy has roots in both Buddhism and archaic Hinduism , but it is believed that Buddhism inherited tantra from Hinduism, as the oldest references to Tantra are found in the Rig Veda, the so-called “hymn of the lonely savage. “.   


At the center of Tantric thought is the manifest universe , considered as a physical and sensorial expression of the unmanifested : hence the idea that, through immersion in the first, it is possible to achieve full unity with the second.


To achieve this it is necessary to follow a very strict discipline which, however, varies according to the level of consciousness of the practitioner. However, all levels have in common the work on the harmonization of male and female energy, Shiva and Shakti  – reminiscent of the Taoist Ying and Yang -. The aim of this work is to awaken and appropriately channel the Kundalini energy , repository of the secret of enlightenment. 



In the tantric journey, the so-called “right hand” and “left hand” paths are clearly distinguished: the latter include the practices that envisage the symbolic union between man and woman as an integral part of the spiritual path .


In the right-hand schools the precepts that push the union of the masculine and feminine principle are interpreted as a metaphor for union on an energetic level, while in the ways of the left hand they are interpreted literally . From here originates the maithuna – the sexual ritual – which is however not a central practice, although Tantra is now commonly associated with this. On the contrary, the maithuna is considered one of the highest and last stages that the yogi has to face because only true yogis can afford to practice it as a meditation technique .  


Asana , mantra , pranayama , meditation and right action, are the truly fundamental components of Tantra Yoga , and these are the elements that are mixed in the different schools. Each school differs from the others because it shifts the emphasis on one or the other element.


However, essential for a path or a teaching to be defined as tantric is the opposite approach to the Vedantic one which seeks liberation out of manifestation. In Tantra it is believed that the phenomena of manifestation are not an illusion from which to awaken but a form of the Supreme in the aspect of Mother (Devi).


Also discover tantric meditation and its benefits

The benefits of Tantra yoga

In the physical field, the benefits of Tantra yoga are those specific to any other form of yoga, and vary according to which elements the school prefers.


In modern schools that favor the physical aspect, the greatest benefits will be borne by the spine , the musculoskeletal system , the elongation of the tendons and the looseness of the joints.

If it is a question of schools that favor the meditative-energetic aspect ( Kundalini ), the benefits will involve the psychological dimension with a net improvement in mood, reduction of stress , containment of depressive states.


The esoteric aspect of Tantra, based above all on the vibration of mantras and advisable only under the guidance of a true master, opens up to spiritual experiences that transcend the individual. 


The mantras of Tantra Yoga

There are traditionally some mantras related to the practice of Tantra, mostly connected with the chakras  and the unmasking of the Kundalini. In reality, mantras are only really effective when given by a true teacher, and they are often secret. We will analyze here only some of the traditional and openly widespread ones in common practice.


The first is  Om or Aum , the absolute and primordial mantra from which everything originates. It is not only a tantric mantra and is used to reconnect to the original reality. Aim is the lesser known original tantric mantra, the female counterpart of Aum. It is pronounced more or less “Hem”, and has the opposite power of Aum, which is to bring down the transforming power (Shakti).


Hrim is the mantra that gives a fiery vibration to the prana, making it active and suitable for acting in the form of feeling. It is no coincidence that it is used for opening the heart chakras  and the solar plexus .


Shrim is the mantra of Lakshmi, which means radiance and which helps to manifest all the positive energies that produce growth, healing and prosperity. 


Krim gives electrical form to prana and focuses intention and faith by illuminating the unconscious parts of consciousness.


Klim is Krim’s feminine counterpart, and gives prana an aquatic vibe. She manifests the power of attraction and beauty. 


Trim and Strim are mantras (masculine and feminine) that allow you to overcome obstacles thanks to the acquisition of knowledge and inner guidance.


Hum  is the mantra of Shiva and Kali, fire in a gaseous form that allows you to cut the bonds that are no longer positive.


The teachers and the schools


Historical figure . Born and lived in Kashmir at the turn of the year 1000 AD, this master with an eclectic personality still exerts a great influence on Indian philosophical thought. His text On Him Tantraloka ( Light on Tantra ) is a comprehensive treatise on all aspects of the Tantric path. 


Shri Param Eswaran

Contemporary master . Initiated in the practices of tantric yoga by Master Swami Sivananda, during his life Shri Eswaran has privileged the devotional aspect of this philosophy. His teachings focus on practices of sound healing (mantra), meditation,  tantric massage  and on the worship of the sacred feminine, what he calls “the living Goddess”. 


Daniel Odier

Contemporary master. Direct disciple of some of the most important Tibetan Lamas and Kashmiri Yogis (including a female yogini), Daniel Odier founded the Tantra / Chan center in Paris in 1995. Later, the center dissolved to encourage independent practice, he dedicated himself to spreading his knowledge around the world. His teaching is based on a particular ecstatic dance , meditation and massage techniques . His books by him are reference texts for modern tantrism. 


Elmar and Michaela Zadra 

Contemporary masters . Trained in Hindu ashrams and Buddhist monasteries on the different aspects of the Tantric tradition, subsequently integrated with more modern subjects ( bioenergetics , NLP, sexology), Elmar and Michaela Zadra propose an approach to Tantra addressed mainly to couples . 


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