Your orientation to what Tantra actually is will be dependent upon the tradition and lineage you practice within. The teachings offered through IATE are rooted in the Shangpa Kagyu Lineage of Tibetan Tantric Buddhism. The Shangpa Kagyu Lineage is approximately 1,200 years old and was founded by two women, Niguma and Sukhasiddhi.
Traditional Buddhist Tantra, which is what the Founders of IATE are trained in, began with the Buddha Shakyamuni nearly 2,600 years ago.
In our tradition of practice, the word Tantra can have a variety of meanings. In practice, the word ‘Tantra” literally means “to weave”. Specifically, in the Vajrayana tradition, it means ‘to weave light and sound with form.’
In this definition of ‘Tantra’, the physical body represents form, light represents specific visualizations, and sound is represented by chanting mantric syllables.
The process of weaving light and sound with form gives rise to a profound transformation of human consciousness, and ultimately, the full realization of enlightenment – which simply means ‘freedom from suffering’.
According to the training we have received, this “weaving of light and sound with form” is a defining principle of authentic tantric practice in the Vajrayana Buddhist Tradition.
These ‘weaving’ practices are done at first non-sexually in order to build an understanding and relationship to the practice.
They can then be applied to sexual experiences in order to consciously utilize the powerful energies generated during sexual pleasure. These energies are then directed to healing and enriching body, mind, and spirit.
In the Western world today, the word ‘Tantra’ is usually referenced as an exotic sexual experience, unusual sexual positions, or a form of erotic massage.
What Tantra actually IS – An ancient, vast, and far-reaching body of wisdom, that has been cultivated on this planet in various emanations for thousands of years!
“Tantra” is not a gateway to better blowjobs or “mindblowing orgasms”, although yes, correct Tantric practice in the correct lineage will give rise to all those experiences and MORE.
Vajrayana Tantra (which is where the Tibetan 5 Element Teachings come from) is the most potent method for liberation from all forms of suffering on Earth. Tantra is not a religion; it is a holistic lifestyle practice for integrating body, mind, spirit, and sex so that you can experience more happiness, more peace, more joy, more connection, and more love in every area of your life.
In the words of our Lama, “Your tantra practice should be improving the quality of your everyday life in order to be useful and effective”.
Learn how to use ‘Tantra as Medicine’ with the Tibetan Five Element Practices!