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April 27, 2015
What is Tantra Yoga?
The many branches of yoga have different aims and focuses, but Tantra Yoga seeks to connect everything. Tantra roughly means liberation through the consideration of many matters. This holistic approach to yoga gives people more control of their lives by connecting with the universe. While there are classes for Tantra Yoga and poses to learn, the motions are secondary to achieving peace with oneself and harmony with the universe.
Tantra Yoga is a serious undertaking because it can involve all parts of the human experience. Teaching Tantra may include chemistry, philosophy, astrology, math and more. An experienced teacher is essential to leading new students down this comprehensive and detailed path. Tantra is also composed of elements that other forms of yoga reject. While some methods focus on celibacy, Tantra recognizes that desires are natural and can be part of enlightenment. Tantric classes focus on the sensual elements of Tantra and are popular with couples.
The universe is alive with an energy that exists because of the balance of two differing principles. Shiva is a god that represents rest, self-control and a static state, and Shakti is a goddess that represents energy, creativity and movement. Shakti and Shiva are opposites but are also spouses who form a loving union. This is why Tantra Yoga embraces every part of living and is a way to become connected to the subtle energy running through the world as a result of these two deities.
A primary aim of Tantra Yoga is to gain a greater awareness by recognizing the way one thinks and acts. By understanding what part of a person's motivations come from culture and conditioning, an individual can transcend from things like ignorance and isolation and find harmony and order.
Moving and breathing help a practitioner get in the right state of mind for Tantra Yoga, but the physical practices are not the main goal. The poses help bring peace when an individual can enact the movements without conscious thought. The movements are more sensuous and fluid because perfect form is irrelevant. The poses are usually simple and allow practitioners to exist freely in the moment instead of concentrating on psychical actions.
Tantra Yoga seems like a huge undertaking but is simply a way to become more in touch with oneself and the larger world. The body acts as a vessel that brings people closer to harmony and the energy of the universe.
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