Tantra is an ancient philosophy and tradition from the Indian subcontinent. It has similar routes to Taoism and arose around the same time, although due to historical recording, it’s not possible to say exactly when. Both traditions date back thousands of years and come from older traditions that had no name, passed down through word of mouth from people who were aware of their energy and the energy around them.
In terms of energy, the practice of tantra is referred to as kundalini tantra. Kundalini is the name given to the dramatic rise of energy up the spine, resulting in a euphoric feeling and vibrations and shuddering in the body. Practitioners of kundalini tantra were seeking awaken the flow of this energy up the spine. This energetic awakening was observed to be accompanied by improvement in health and spiritual connection.
The traditional tantric understanding of how this could be accomplished was to remove blockages in the body. Blockages were caused by tension around an area where there was a trauma in the body. These would generally exist on all three levels of body, mind and spirit and usually revolved around a stuck emotional trauma that had been somatised or stored in the body. The tension around the stuck emotion happens because the emotion is painful. When it is stored in the body, it can be ignored to some extent. But when it starts to leave the pain comes back and is re-experienced which is why we subconsciously keep the area tense, blocking the energy.
Ancient tantrists had a significant understanding of the mechanics of the energy flow in the body. The understood that there are energy centres where the energy can become stuck on its flow up the body, and saw these energy centres as having different qualities. Our ability to manifest in certain areas of our lives was about the quality of flow through these areas. The chakras related to, starting from the root chakra by the anus, our ability to connect with our basic survival needs including to make money, our ability to enjoy life and feel pleasure including sexual pleasure, our will power, our ability to love and connect with others, our intuition, our intelligence and our ability to connect spiritually.
These energy centres relate to and correspond to the seven glands. Yogic practice is designed to open the flow of energy through the chakras. There is more to the energy flow than stretching positions and it is well documented that virtue is an essential part of this practice. As well as the chakras, there is also the flow of energy in the spine, called the sushumna, and the nadis, which are two energy lines that spiral up the body. For kundalini to flow the nadis need to be balanced, which is parallel to balancing yin and yang or opposing forces in the body.
TANTRIC MASSAGE AND KUNDALINI AWAKENING
Tantric practitioners could spend years meditating and practicing yoga seeking to experience kundalini awakening. Some practitioners would find themselves blocked and could not understand why the energy was not moving. Tantric massage has been practiced for thousands of years. It is a way for an advanced practitioner with understanding of the physical, energetic and spiritual workings of the body to use physical and energetic techniques to open the chakras and awaken the flow of energy.
When you receive a traditional tantric massage, the practitioner spends a long time working around the spine, loosening the whole area and relaxing the muscles so the energy can flow. This can be painful, as blockages and knots are released, and you can experience the feelings of the emotions coming up, anger, sadness or fear, for example, as the blockages release. To assist in the release process, it is beneficial to breathe and make a sound, and also to move the body in any way that you feel. Breath, sound and movement are the key to eliminating blockages from the body.
Prostate massage in men is an important part of energy awakening. The prostate is often blocked to varying degrees and unblocking this is essential as this is the area that the energy comes from. Prostate massage also stimulates the coccyx, which is a vital part of the channel through which the sushumna energy in the spine rises. In women, yoni massage serves to awaken the flow of energy, in particular, blockages that are released in the g spot or female prostate.
The effects vary dramatically. When blockages are released we can cry, laugh or shake, amongst other things. When the energy starts to flow, if it is blocked, the body will jerk. This jerking will clear as the kundalini energy flows. If the jerking does not stop, there is a blockage in the part of the body that jerks. If this does not clear with time it is important to try to understand why. Often the block can be in the Heart area, relating to a blockage in the ability to experience intimacy, or it can be in the throat, as a result of inability to express yourself.
Once your energy starts to flow this is something that you can palpably experience. The feeling is euphoric and has definite health benefits, as you feel more alive, your body is more supple, movement more fluid and the body shifts from being in a painful and blocked state of energy stagnation into the natural state of energy flow.
Your life will not be the same again. The experience of kundalini energy brings a quality of magic into your existence. As well as improving your health it gives you access to a deeply personal spiritual connection. The mechanics of this is that, when the energy is flowing up the spine and into the brain, the pineal gland starts to activate. The ancient Taoists realised that the pineal gland was central to our spiritual nature.
The pineal gland has the ability to produce the substance di-methal-triptomine or DMT. This is the active ingredient of ayahuasca and many other plants that are use din shamanic journeying. What is incredible is that we don’t need to take a substance to experience it; we can experience it through meditation and kundalini awakening. This is an energy to utilise and enjoy for your enjoyment, health and spiritual experience.