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 w h a t   i s   t a n t r a ?

Tantra is a spiritual path for integrating body, mind and soul. It differs from other paths in its honoring of the body, using the senses, sexuality, and feelings to help you evolve spiritually. Tantra assists you in realizing your full potential as a human being. If you choose to live from the Tantric perspective, you will transform your life. You will discover bliss. You may apply Tantric practices and principles to many areas of life - to relationship and sexual loving, spiritual practice and lifestyle, physical and emotional well-being.

The benefits of Tantric practice include:

* Transcendent sexuality
* Deepened relationships
* Emotional freedom
* Expanded intuitive abilities
* Sustained health and vitality
* Boundless love
* and Playful, ecstatic awareness

As you explore further in this website, you will discover much more about Tantra. Please read on!

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 a b o u t   t a n t r a . . . f r o m   t h e   h e a r t

At the Heart of Tantra is Love.

The practices and rituals of Tantra, both spiritual and sexual, work to create the conditions necessary for love to flourish and endure. When we achieve states of presence, energy flow, relaxation, harmony, and connection, love emerges and opens the heart. To bring about the conditions that generate and sustain love, we can learn to rely upon Tantric practices to create more of these positive energy states. Tantra, therefore, is not just something to do in our bedrooms, but rather a complete way of life.

As a Tantrika, I follow regular practices to quiet my mind, open my awareness to sensation, raise my energy vibration, and cultivate a sacred attitude towards myself, others, and events in my life. As part of my practice, each day I create a time to connect with my body and spirit. I use the Ipsalu Tantra method to attune to my inherent Bliss vibration: I awaken my body, still my mind, arouse my shakti energy, draw that orgasmic lifeforce into my higher chakras, and enjoy a meditation where I connect with what is present and what I want to create in my life. By the end of my practice my body is buzzing with blissful vibration. I feel spacious, centered, grounded, and ready to bring my vibrant energy with me out into my day.  

Cultivating states of presence, energy flow, relaxation, harmony, and connection is not always easy. A lifetime of hurts and other negative experiences have gradually limited our ability to be present and to express the essence of who we really are, fully and freely. We slowly become cut off from our feelings and the ability to experience our sexual creative energy in a connected, joyful, loving way.

In a subtle, gentle, yet powerful way, Tantric loving brings healing. It breaks up and washes away residues of our past that hold us back from limitless love and intimacy. Tantra teaches us not only how to be great lovers, but how to be great healers for one another as well.

Tantra represents a unique paradigm for conscious living and loving. It offers a passionate and expansive way of life for those seeking to connect with their sexuality in a positive, heart-centered way, a way that celebrates freedom of spirit and body alike.


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  m o r e   a b o u t   t a n t r a . . .

by Jan

Origins of Tantra

Tantra is a set of spiritual teachings and a unique paradigm for relating to one's self and the universe that originated in India well over 2000 years ago. It is still relevant today.

It originated in ancient Vedic times, in matriarchal cultures such as that of the Indus Valley, and in practices revolving around the worship of the Goddess.

The essence of Tantra has taken many forms of expression and appears in virtually every culture in history, e.g., Chinese Taoist Tantra, Native American Quodoshka.

Tantra is a timeless phenomenon as well as a global one. Even today in the West it satisfies many of our most essential needs: love, connection, intimacy, play, harmony and balance, inspiration, relaxation, celebration, physical and emotional well-being, sexual and spiritual fulfillment.

The Word Tantra

Tantra comes from the ancient Sanskrit words tanoti which means "to expand" and trayati which means "liberation." This implies that you can be liberated by expanding your consciousness.

Another definition of the word Tantra is “web” or “to weave.” Tantra is an interweaving of the energies of many levels of consciousness from the mundane, to the most erotic, to the most profound.

“Tantra” also signifies scripture that contains Tantric spiritual teachings.

Tantra Yoga

Like other Yogic traditions, Tantra Yoga uses the tools of meditation (dhyana), conscious breathing (pranayama), physical gestures (mudra), sacred sounds (mantra), sacred geometry (yantra), body positions (asana), muscular contractions (bandhas) to achieve self-transformation, conscious awakening, and spiritual evolution.

Tantra is generally divided into two main streams: Red Tantra and White Tantra.

White Tantra or Tantra of the Right Hand (Dakshina Marga) involves the meditative techniques of Tantra and is essentailly a celibate, ascetic path.

Red Tantra or Tantra of the Left Hand (Vama Marga) involves the use of elements that were considered taboo, such as the ritual of sexual union (maithuna), as a means of attaining liberation. Here, sexual union is used as means for going beyond into transcendent states of consciousness.

My private sessions and classes include verbal instruction only in the practices of Red Tantra.

“Pink” Tantra strikes the middle ground between the two paths, harmoniously joining the practical and esoteric elements of both orientations. The instruction and training I offer falls into this category. My focus is on the heart energy using tantric techniques for attaining self-knowledge, spiritual evolution, and self-realization. The work has incredible value for single people and couples alike.

The interrelated notions of the Goddess, Kundalini, the Subtle Body, and the Chakra System are central to Tantra and its aims.

The Goddess

The Goddess is revered in tantra.

In ancient times, The Goddess was worshiped as the embodiment of eroticism and the source of all creation. Every woman was seen as Shakti - The Goddess incarnate. Each woman is a Shakti. Shakti is the Hindu Goddess, or archetype, of the divine feminine.

Shakti also refers to a particular quality of energy that is feminine and rises upwards in the body, such as earth energy or sexual energy. It was worshipped in ancient India as the primal energy that created the cosmos. Shakti, or sexual energy, is creative life-force energy.

Re-awakening the Goddess is central to modern Tantra. Although both the masculine and the feminine energies are equally important, the extra focus on the feminine is necessary in order to counterbalance the predominant masculine energy of our present culture. Daily life in this busy world does not encourage women or men to recognize or acknowledge the Goddess, but rekindling a woman's sexual energy brings forth her Goddess nature. Tantric practices allow the Goddess in every woman to emerge. Both the woman and her partner benefit. The free flow of a woman's sexual energy activates her shakti, creating an atmosphere for spiritual enlightenment. Her pleasure and desire for lovemaking will increase and may even surpass the pleasure potential and sexual desire of the man.

In Tantra, reverently loving the Yoni and mastering ejaculation are ways to honor the Goddess. I enjoy teaching these techniques and initiating those new to Tantra into the art of honoring the divine feminine.


The main purpose of the tantric path is to activate Kundalini energy in the body. Those who achieve this awakening live in an ongoing state of bliss.

Kundalini is the most powerful and refined energetic force available to us as human beings.

The term means "she who is coiled" and is traditionally depicted as a serpent, coiled and sleeping at the base of the spine. When awakened, it begins to uncoil as it climbs up through the chakras to the crown. For thousands of years, the serpent has been used in many cultures to symbolize rising consciousness.

A minimal flow of Kundalini exists in everyone already. It is the energy that animates the body and the physical senses and provides a base level of consciousness. As the flow increases, we begin to access higher realms of consciousness into the spiritual dimensions.

Kundalini is activated by the energy of Shakti, or sexual energy. Shakti is generated through conscious lovemaking or specific yogic techniques designed to activate this energy. The tantric path sees sexual energy as an important expression of Kundalini.

A full Kundalini awakening occurs only when a perfect balance of masculine and feminine exists in the body. Maintaining a balance between these energies is the essence of tantric practice.

Like a cobra which has cast its coils
                                    spiraling conch-like three-times-
                                                            and-a-half round Shiva, her mouth
                                               laid on that other mouth
                       which leads to bliss,
            the enchantress
of the world,
            slender as a lotus stem,
                       bright as a lightning-flash,
                                                           lies sleeping,
                       breathing softly out and in,
murmuring poems
                        in sweetest meters,
                                                humming like a drunken bee
                                                                                    in the petals of
                                                            the muladhara lotus,
                        how brightly her light shines
--Satcakra-nirupana Tantra

For a more in-depth discussion of Kundalini and how it works, refer to the excellent chapter on the subject in Bodhi Avinasha’s The Ipsalu Formula: A Method for Tantra Bliss or Swami Satyananda Saraswati’s complete book Kundalini Tantra.

The Subtle Body

The Subtle Body

Since Tantric practices directly influence the energy of the subtle body, a basic understanding of esoteric anatomy is useful.

The Western view of anatomy encompasses systems of the body that we can see: the skeletal system, muscular system, nervous system, etc. Eastern medicine (i.e. Ayurveda, Chinese medicine) teaches that a subtle body also pervades our anatomy.

The most important aspect of the subtle body is the system of energy centers, known as chakras. The subtle body also contains several hundred thousand energy channels, called nadis. There are three principle subtle channels, the sushumna (central), the ida (left channel) and pingala (right channel). The subtle body is also called the energy body.

If you have ever done yoga or received acupuncture, you have already experienced the awakening of your subtle body.

As kundalini awakens, it rises up through the sushumna, moving through the main chakras of the subtle body. If there are energy blocks along this central energy "highway" the kundalini will not ascend through all of the chakras.

A heightened awareness of your energy body translates to intensified levels of sensation and pleasure. When your energy body is awake, even the slightest touch may arouse great bliss. I can teach you how to awaken the energy body of your beloved, inspiring in him or her unknown delights!

The Chakra System

The chakras are concentrated vortices of energy within the subtle body, centers of consciousness. They are way-stations along the upward path of the Kundalini. Our bodies actually have many chakras, both big (e.g. at the crown of the head) and small (e.g. at the pads of our fingers). “The chakras” refer to the seven main chakras "situated" along the axis of the spine. All the chakras have the potential to become powerful erogenous zones!


English and Sanskrit Name


Color Symbol

Central Issue


Intuitive Abilities

Crown Chakra Sahasrara

Top of head



Wisdom, knowledge, consciousness, spiritual connection


Sixth Chakra Ajna

Center of head


Imagination, intuition

Clear seeing, non-judgment, accurate interpretation

Clairvoyance, the ability to see spirit

Fifth Chakra Vissudha



Communication, creative expression

Clear, authentic communication and creativity

Clairaudience, the ability to hear spirit

Fourth Chakra Anahata



Love, self-affinity

Compassion, tranquility, self-acceptance, good relationships

Connectedness to one's truth or soul purpose

Third Chakra Manipura

Solar plexus


Power, will

Vitality, spontaneity, strength of will, purpose, self-esteem


Second Chakra Svadhisthana

Low belly, genitals


Sexuality, emotions

Feeling, fluidity, pleasure, healthy sexuality

Clairsentience, the ability to feel energy, emotions

Root Chakra Muladhara

Base of spine



Stability, grounding, physical health, prosperity, trust


Although we cannot see or feel the chakras with our physical senses, they are evident in the shape of our physical bodies and in the way we think, feel, and handle life's situations.

Sometimes these energy centers become clogged or blocked due to negative experiences, physical pain, emotional traumas, social programming, cultural conditioning, limiting belief systems, or adverse life conditions. Blocks result in an incomplete or unbalanced experience of life and limit the expression of our own true life force energy. If you have ever experienced a "knot in your throat," for example, due to holding back tearful emotional expression, then you have experienced a block in the 5th chakra. This block acts as a limit, restricting the full expression of your inner world to the outer. Can you recall a time when you have experienced a "heavy heart," a block in the 4th chakra? Grief, resulting from hurts to the heart, blocks the heart's natural lightness and expansiveness; the heart becomes heavy and closed. A heavy heart prevents us from engaging in nourishing, loving relationships, and our life may feel incomplete as a result.

Awakening and opening all of our chakras allow us to express ourselves as unique, whole, and fully-realized individuals.

Tantric practice provides means to fully awaken and open the chakras, with particular emphasis on the second, fourth chakras and sixth chakras (sex, heart, and spirit), integral to our experience as expansive, joyful beings.

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  i p s a l u   t a n t r a

Ipsalu Tantra Kriya Yoga is a unique approach within the variety of Tantric paths. Faithful to ancient Tantra's original purposes and researched techniques, it is an adapted system to meet the interests of people in the western world at the present evolutionary level. Ipsalu Tantra is a profound and playful way for learning to live in bliss. What distinguishes Ipsalu is the focus on realizing your true Self, attention to emotional flow, and the skillfully designed sets of yogic techniques for safely activating your kundalini (most powerful and creative) energy.

"Ipsalu" in Sanskrit means "transcending illusions of desire." By freeing and integrating ego desires, you realize your bliss body. Frustration, separation, boredom and fear melt away for they are simply clouds over the magnificence that is present inside you. The union of sex, love and pure awareness within your body, with a beloved, in each moment, with everyone, with all of existence is indescribable joy. It is the essence of your nature.

Jan is a Certified Ipsalu Tantra Kriya Yoga Instructor, and founder of Bay Area Ipsalu Tantra.

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