Tantra Festival – September 2012: A Glimpse into the World of Tantra
By Advaita Mihai Stoian
Tantra is the Spiritual Path of Saying YES to Life in All Its Divine Aspects
In the world in which we live today there is an increased impression that we are no longer subjected to limitations, taboos or preconceived ideas … but is it really like this? Looking more closely at the situation, one can see that nowadays many aspects of life are subjected to a very rigid system of values (if there is any value in them); a dogmatic fanaticism that is hidden behind false moral principles. It is therefore very seldom that we can find a system that dares to approach life in all its aspects and to truly follow the spiritual principles even if they reveal aspects about our current way of living that are not easy to accept.
Sometimes compromises become a way of dealing with problems (at least for those whose answers will not be comfortable for the ego), they are often the method that predominates in a world that is more obsessed with what is politically correct instead of what is spiritually right or even Divinely integrated. This is the context in which Tantra stands out as one of the very few branches of spiritual science that dares to speak openly about all aspects of life, even those that the false moralists are still condemning to ignorance or to a condescending denial. This is why the hunters of sensationalism and cheap journalists find in the Tantric system subjects that can easily be used to gain the attention of a public that needs to be fed with their daily portion of scandalous news.Spiritually open relationships between the genders, intimacy that is based upon love and deep transfiguration, and ecstatic experiences starting from the overwhelming sensations of the senses are all deeply buried in the garbage that is generated by such attempts to invent something that gets the attention of the public.
Being fed with such information, people perceive the tantric teachings only from the perspective of cheap sexuality, as an exciting novelty, and therefore they overlook the rest of Tantra. Most people mistakenly tend to equate Tantra with a science of sexuality for the same reason that most people equate yoga with stretching exercises: because Western society prefers fast and easy solutions to everything, even if these so-called solutions may be shallow and do not offer long-lasting results. Many modern people are not used to putting any serious effort into in-depth personal transformation. Many of the promoters of Tantra in the West have put aside most of the extensive spiritual training and goals of Tantra, and kept what seems to be the most exciting, and also easiest to sell part of it: some of the teachings about sexuality, (and even then they are incomplete).
There Is No Such Thing as “Tantric Sex”
Tantra actually warns against the dangers of having sex without profound love, respect and commitment towards your partner. “Love-making” is a much better way to describe it, because this is what you do when you integrate tantric practices into your intimate life: you create love. Being always based upon the cultivation of our loving capacity, Tantra is never an opportunity for immoral practice; it requires an attitude that can be called “Spiritual Morality”. This attitude is rooted in the deep understanding and application of universal moral principles that can be found, in one way or another, throughout spiritual science. These principles may not be exactly that which is socially accepted at a particular historical moment, as the social norms of morality change very much over time, and they also differ from culture to culture.
The norms of tantric morality on the other hand are universal and timeless in their applicability. Tantra teaches many techniques that can be practiced in a couple, there are also many other individual techniques. It has never been exclusive towards those engaged in love relationships. What many do not know, is that just like yoga, Tantra is not a religion, but a precise science of personal transformation. When practiced correctly, the tantric teachings can actually help you deepen your understanding of your own religion. However its teachings are universal, just like mathematics or physics. Through genuine Tantra, life itself becomes a joyous series of lessons, teaching us all that we need to know, giving the chance of transforming for the better, supporting us to realize our full potential. The ultimate goal of genuine tantric training is to help us realize that we are essentially spiritual beings, blissful and timeless, being all bound together in spirit in an intrinsic web of connections that reveals the wonders of our Eternal Source.
On the 15th and 16th September, I was invited, together with my beloved Adina, to attend the third edition of the Tantra Festival in Copenhagen, hosted in Concordia by Natha Yogacenter, that again opened its doors to leading Tantra teachers, relationship experts, lecturers, authors, mentors, counselors, specialists and others, from home and from abroad (USA, Germany, Sweden etc), who generously gathered to share their experiences on this special occasion. There were more than 30 workshops and conferences on love, relationships, sensuality and spirituality, energy work, Spiritually Inspired Art, and Tantric Theater, and even an Eco-trance Party, altogether covering many of the aspects of the tantric path.
The first edition of the Tantra Festival was held in August 2011 in Natha Yogacenter, Copenhagen and was the first of its kind in Denmark. The idea of the festival is to create a bi-annual event which focuses on an important social and cultural phenomenon within our society; a veritable ”Tantra-wave” that is helping to bring together people who wish to evolve through awareness upon their life, through their couple relationship, and through awakening consciousness in their lives. The popularity of the festival speaks already for itself. Tantra is indeed becoming part of the way we interact with each other and it is becoming more and more obvious that it does address the major questions in life. Tantra Festival promotes creative and innovative solutions to modern lifestyle challenges and includes a wide range of topics, from science to spirituality, from health to self-development, from sexuality to arts, from lifestyle to a spiritually integrated life, all of which ultimately can lead to self-realization.
Considering again the fact that Tantra is more famous than known, the lecture I kept together with Adina was called From Finite to Infinite: the Senses – Tantric Tools to Expand the Consciousness through Perception and was dedicated to those who are willing to learn new and exciting ways of re-igniting love, harmony, passion and growth in their relationships. It aimed to help people understand that transformation starts only within us. All one needs is the desire to open their mind, overcome preconceived ideas, and to make a minimal effort to practice the techniques. In this way it is possible to discover (once you start to practice such simple, but genuine methods) that Tantra is a fast and sure path to practical understanding and deep personal transformation and fulfillment. Real Tantra helps us to bring light, joy, spirituality and wonder to everything we do.
I also kept a lecture on the Mysteries of Spiritually Open Couple Relationships. This topic continuously heats up the imagination of many people today. Yet, the tantric system does not address this topic explicitly, it is simply one of the consequences of human development and not a goal in itself. It is rather an option that appears as an effect of successful spiritual transformation. I explained the point of view that the tantric system has towards open relationships and the conditions for this to happen in one’s life. There is a clear distinction between having multiple closed relationships and having a true open relationship, a distinction that cannot be made unless we deeply realize the very essence of a relationship and its mechanisms. An open relationship is indeed an amazing experience; a true spiritual gift that we can offer to the ones we love and are reciprocally loved by. Compared to the closed relationship, it is analogically like the superiority of the intuition over the logical mind. Yet one cannot decide to have an open relationship without creating the proper conditions for it to appear. We will delve more deeply into this intriguing subject in some future articles and events.
To conclude, I can say it was an absolutely unforgettable and profoundly transforming weekend consecrated to Tantra. Once again, we had a full house packed with joyous people that connected and shared their life experiences during this amazing event.
Here you can find the complete Program of Tantra Festival – September 2012. I will soon post a picture gallery. Enjoy!
Read more: mihaistoian.net
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