Although it is relatively new to the United States, tantra sex has long been practiced in many Eastern cultures. Tantra originated in India more than 6,000 years ago and emerged as a rebellion against organized religions that held the belief that in order to achieve enlightenment, sexuality should be rejected. Tantra philosophy purporting that sexuality was a doorway to the divine and that earthly pleasures, such as eating, dancing, and creative expression were sacred acts.

The word Tantra means “to manifest, to expand, to show and to weave.” In this context, sex is thought to expand consciousness and to combine the polarities of male and female into a harmonious whole. Couples need not adopt the Tantric philosophy in order to benefit from the sexual wisdom of this ancaszxient art. Tantric sexual practices teach us to prolong the act of making love and to utilize potent orgasmic energies more effectively.

Tantra is also health enhancing. “Sexual energy is one of our most powerful energies for creating health,” says Christiane Northrup, MD, author of Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom. “By using sexual energy consciously…we can tap into a true source of youth and vitality.”


In the West, we sometimes view sex as a source of recreation, strictly for pleasure, and with a goal of reaching orgasm. Tantra is focused on pleasuring your partner, connecting more fully, and as a means of transformation. Following are some steps you can take with your partner to begin a shift toward Tantra sex.

Make time for each other.

Plan a sexual rendezvous at least once per week. Set aside an hour or more of uninterrupted time to be together.

Create a sexy atmosphere.

You can meet in your bedroom, living room or another space in your house, creating a sacred space for each other will help relax you and bring you into the moment. Candles, fresh flowers, finger foods and enticing aromas can transform any room into a temple of sexual delight. Even something as simple as dimming the lights and playing erotic music will help create a sexually erotic environment.

Wear erotic clothing.

Or, wear nothing at all. Experiment with clothing and accessories that make you feel sexy and excite your partner.

Use ritual to increase intimacy.

Create a sacred sex ritual. This can be something as simple as feeding each other or sharing a glass of wine in the nude. Some couples bathe together in order to attune to each other. Water relaxes the body and is a powerful symbol of sexuality. Massaging each other is another way to infuse your energies. Try reading poetry, dancing, listening to music, or any other activity that works to develop new intimacy skills. Most importantly, use this time to communicate, sharing what you love about each other. The idea is to show each other how much they are loved and cherished.


“The only time we ever think about breathing is when we have trouble doing it, yet conscious breathing can be a powerful aid in sexual growth,” according to sex therapist Marty Klein, Ph.D. of Palo Alto, California. Breathing exercises also quiet the mind and help you focus on each other.

• Try this breathing exercise: Sit quietly, cross-legged, facing each other. Rest your hands on your knees with your palms facing up. As you gaze into your partner’s eyes, take soft, but deep breaths. Keep your eyes open, gazing beyond the eyes, into the soul. Although this may feel awkward at first, sustained eye contact is essential for building intimacy. Now, pay attention to your breathing. Begin to breathe at the same pace, bringing air slowly in through your nose and exhaling through your mouth. Maintain eye contact while you breathe together. Practice this exercise until you can sustain eye contact and harmonized breathing for about 10 minutes.

Experiment with erotic touch to fully appreciate your lover.

This most pleasurable practice will help you become even better lovers. Maintain eye contact, don’t worry about keeping your breath synchronized. Guide your lover as you take turns stimulating each other. Describing exactly how you would like to be touched.

Share your desires in an encouraging way.

For example, ask your lover to caress your clitoris or penis, encouraging him or her to apply more or less pressure, to stroke in a specific pattern or to use the tongue, etc. Be sure to thank your lover and let him or her know with words or sounds that you are enjoying the foreplay and sensual touch.

Create a “pleasure box.”

Once you become comfortable with this process, you may wish to create a “pleasure box.” Include whatever excites you and your partner: a feather, vibrator, massage oil, blindfold, soft fabric, erotica, and loving notes to each other are just a few ideas. As you pleasure each other, don’t be scared about asking for something different. This is your time for appreciation, experimentation and for taking responsibility for your own fulfillment by using your voice and asking for what you want.

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