Maheshani, meditate as being absorbed in the yoni cakra, with yoni on
the tongue, yoni in the mind, yoni in the ears and yoni in the eyes.
Mighty Lady, all sadhana is vain unless with the yoni. Therefore,reject
other pujas and do Yoni Puja. Maheshani, there is no siddhi without
devotion to the Guru - Yoni Tantra, X
The Tantrik tradition has come to be viewed as synonymous in the West
with sexuality. And, to some extent, that's the case in Asia too, mostly
because of the pervasive influence of Western education. What is the
The Web pages on this site cover a multitude of different subjects and
this reflects the tantrik tradition which spans a huge range of topics.
Many interested in the topic, however, think tantra is equivalent to sex
and focus on one specific rite, particular to the Kaula and Vamachara
schools of tantra, and on the "five things", the so-called Panchamakara,
including sexual intercourse, that are part of it. Vatsyayana's Kama
Sutra, for instance, has little or nothing to do with the tantrik
tradition but it is true that prior to the Muslim and Christian
invasions of the sub-continent, the culture had a healthy interest in
sexuality and also had the sensual language of Sanskrit to express it.
The first inconvenient point about the tantrik tradition is that in the
overwhelming majority of texts, it is demanded that a practitioner be
initiated by a guru (female or male), who belongs to a lineage or
sampradaya. If someone practises tantrik rites, uses a mantra or yantra
from books, without being competent (adhikara), not only is there no
success, but, on the contrary, he or she is cursed by the goddess. Or so
the texts say.
"Beguiled by false knowledge as propagated, certain persons, deprived of
the guru-shishya tradition, imagine the nature of the Kuladharma
according to their own intellect. If merely by drinking wine, men were
to attain fulfilment, all addicted to liquor would reach perfection. If
mere partaking of flesh were to lead to the high state, all the
carnivores in the world would become eligible to immense merit. If
liberation were to be ensured by sexual intercourse with a shakti, all
creatures would become liberated by female companionship." (Kularnava
Tantra, II, 116- 118).
The possibility exists that it was comparatively late that the tantrik
schools went "underground". Judging from texts like the Kalika Purana,
it seems that tantrik sexuality was a part of everyday life.
The panchamakara (five "m"s) are maithuna (intercourse), madya (liquor),
mudra (bean), mamsa (flesh) and matsya (fish). They form part of a rite
performed by those of the class called Viras (heroes). According to the
tradition, practitioners fall into three classes: divya (divine), vira
(heroic) and pashu (beastlike).
Yet the vira, or heroic sadhana, is only a part of the Kaula tradition
and, if we believe the texts themselves, is only for a certain category
of practitioners (sadhakas (m) and sadhvinis (f)) who can benefit from
it. It is prohibited for the pashu, who is likely to misunderstand both
it and its inner significance on a superficial level. For those not
competent to practise this rite, it is poisonous.
Further, tantrik groups which do not fall into the Kulachara or
Vamachara divisions, do not drink wine or use sex in a ritual context.
Some may substitute ginger for flesh, milk for wine and the symbolic
union of two flowers for copulation.
The influential Kaulavali Nirnaya Tantra, a digest of many of the
greatest of the Kaula tantras, says that drinking is either divya, vira
or pashu. The first is the realisation that the Goddess as wine-nectar
is within, the second uses alcohol, while for the pashu it is prohibited
as it is done without understanding. To a vira who wants to be
liberated, ordinary prohibitions do not apply. Wine is Shakti and flesh
And the Kularnava Tantra says that the divine person, or divya, realises
that wine flows from the 1,000 petal lotus, flesh is the sense of
duality, fish is the disordering of the senses and sexual intercourse is
the union of Kundalini with supreme Shiva. Indeed, the commentary to the
famous Karpuradistotra goes further and says that true sexual
intercourse is union with the goddess within. Intercourse with any other
woman is adultery. That may be true for the divya, but not for the vira.
(See Vira Sadhana)
These considerations make it clear that far from tantra being synonymous
with sex, sexuality is a part of the sadhana (work on oneself) and the
tradition, and then, perhaps, only at a certain stage and for a certain