Tantric Meditation. Learn its Secrets

Tantrism is a spiritual tradition that flourished in both Hinduism and Buddhism and at its heart lies a deep recognition and reverence for the feminine. Throughout the centuries, the worship of the goddess and the veneration of the feminine energy, known as Shakti, have played a central role in tantric practice. The essential idea here is that divinity manifests in both male and female forms, and it is through the harmonization and union of these energies that one can attain enlightenment, freedom or moksha.

Tantric meditation is one of the ways to connect with the divine and harmonize the inner energies. Often, meditation techniques involve the visualization of female deities, the use of mantras, yantras (geometric diagrams) and mandalas. The practice can vary widely, but the goal is to awaken the Kundalini energy, symbolized as a dormant snake at the base of the spine. As this energy awakens and ascends, it is said to purify and balance the chakras, leading the practitioner to higher states of consciousness.


Tantric Meditation Techniques

Although tantra uses a large number of meditation techniques common to other spiritual currents, in this section we will focus on the most characteristic tantric meditation practices:

Visualization of Deities

En la meditación tántrica es muy utilizada la visualización de deidades.

Visualization is a powerful technique in many spiritual traditions, and in the context of Tantra, it is essential for transforming the mind and body of the practitioner. This practice is based on the idea that by meditating deeply on a deity, one can emulate its qualities and absorb its energy. But what exactly does it mean to visualize a deity and how does this relate to spiritual development?

To understand the practice of visualization, we must first understand the nature of deities in Tantra. These are not considered to be external gods to be worshipped, but rather symbolic representations of universal qualities and energies. Each deity has its own essence and symbolism, and these energies can be invoked to transform the mind of the practitioner.

Visualization of deities begins with a detailed understanding and study of the god or goddess in question. Their characteristics, attributes, history and symbolism are meditated upon. This intellectual phase is essential to the depth and effectiveness of the subsequent meditation.

Once there is a clear understanding of the deity, the practitioner begins the actual meditation. The eyes are closed and an attempt is made to “see” the deity in the mind. But it is not just a matter of “seeing” with the inner eyes; it is an experience that must involve all the senses. One may try to hear the sound of the deity, feel its presence, or even smell the aroma that is associated with it.

As one goes deeper into meditation, the line between the meditator and the deity begins to fade. The goal is to reach a state where the practitioner feels merged with the deity, absorbing its qualities and energies.

This practice has multiple benefits. On the one hand, by emulating the qualities of the deity, the practitioner can cultivate those same qualities in himself. For example, if one meditates on Green Tara, a deity associated with compassion, one can awaken deeper feelings of compassion in one’s own heart.

In addition, visualization of deities can help to purify the mind. In the process of meditation, distractions and wandering thoughts are replaced by the powerful image of the deity. Over time, this can lead to a clearer and more focused mind.

Yantras

El Sri Yantra es un poderoso símbolo del hinduismo.

The Sanskrit term “yantra” can be roughly translated as“instrument” or“machine,” but this translation is only the surface of its multifaceted nature.

Yantras are geometric diagrams, usually made up of a series of interlocking shapes and patterns. The most fundamental form of many yantras is the triangle, which may be oriented upward (representing the masculine aspect or Shiva) or downward (representing the feminine aspect or Shakti). These triangles, combined in various ways, give rise to more complex structures.

Each yantra corresponds to a specific deity or concept and is believed to be the graphic representation of the energy of that deity. This energy does not manifest solely in the form of the god or goddess, but extends to the deeper vibrational essence of the universe.

how is yantra used in tantric meditation? As we have already mentioned, yantra is a complex tool used in practices that go beyond simple traditional meditation:

  • Focus and concentration: One of the most significant challenges faced by meditators, especially those just beginning to practice, is the constant intrusion of stray thoughts. The yantra serves as a focal point, offering the mind a complex but harmonious image to concentrate on, helping the practitioner to bypass the mind’s habitual chatter.
  • Energeticactivation: Each yantra is designed to resonate with specific frequencies. When a practitioner meditates on a yantra, it is believed that the resonant frequency of the yantra can help activate corresponding energies within the meditator. This can lead to higher energy experiences, deep insights and even transformative spiritual experiences.
  • Symbolism and deep understanding: The shapes, patterns and interconnections in a Yantra are not arbitrary. Each line, curve and intersection is symbolic and represents deeper philosophical and spiritual truths. As the meditator deepens his or her study and meditation of the Yantras, he or she can achieve a deeper understanding of these truths, thus deepening his or her spiritual wisdom.
  • Manifestation and desires: Some practitioners use the yantras as tools for manifestation. By meditating on a Yantra that corresponds to a specific deity or energy, the individual aligns their energy with that of the yantra, helping to manifest specific desires or intentions.
  • Balance and harmonization: The very nature of yantras, with their symmetrical and intricate designs, can bring about a sense of balance and harmony in the practitioner. They balance the often chaotic energies of the mind, leading to a state of calm and balance.
  • Sacred connection: In the Tantric tradition, deities are not mere mythological entities, but symbolic representations of cosmic energies. By meditating on a yantra associated with a particular deity, the practitioner essentially connects with that energy, invoking its presence and blessings in his or her life.

When a person begins to use yantras as a meditation tool, a physical image of the yantra is often used first, but the goal is for the practitioner to be able to fully visualize each of the elements that make up the yantra, resulting in a much more sophisticated practice that requires a greater capacity for attention and concentration.

Although there is no single way to meditate using yantras, we will briefly describe a method that you can use if you are thinking of practicing this type of tantric meditation:

  • Physical Position: Sit comfortably in a meditation posture, with your spine erect and your hands resting in your lap. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths, calming the mind and preparing for the inner journey.
  • Remember the Yantra: With your eyes closed, recall the image of the Yantra in as much detail as possible. Start with its outer geometry, gradually move inward, and finally focus on its central point or Bindu.
  • Deepen the visualization: Over time, try to see the yantra more vividly and in more detail. Feel its patterns, colors and vibrations. Experience its energy radiating from the center.
  • Integration and resonance: As you hold the image of the yantra in your mind, begin to feel its energy resonating within you. Visualize this energy filling your entire being, aligning your frequencies with those of the Yantra.
  • Completion: Once you feel completely immersed in the energy of the yantra, begin to slowly withdraw from the visualization, returning to your physical surroundings. Take a few deep breaths, open your eyes and sit quietly for a few moments, absorbing the experience.

Mantras

Meditación con mantras Om Mani Padme Hum.

A mantra is essentially a sound, syllable, word or group of words that is considered capable of transforming the mind. In its simplest form, it is a sacred utterance, a numinous sound or a syllable, word, phoneme or group of words that has psychological and spiritual powers. Mantra meditation helps induce an altered state of consciousness.

They can be spoken aloud, whispered or repeated silently in the mind. Perhaps the best known mantra is “Om” or “Aum“, considered the primordial sound of the universe.

In Tantric meditation, mantras are used as an integral tool to assist practitioners in their journey of self-discovery and spiritual awakening. Tantra practice, while diverse in its approaches and techniques, places a strong emphasis on the use of sound vibrations to invoke specific energies, states of consciousness and spiritual experiences. Here is how mantras are used in tantric meditation:

  • Foundation of meditation: At the core of Tantra is a belief in the power of sound. Mantras, often composed of sacred syllables, become focal points that help meditators deepen their awareness.
  • Bija Mantras: These are seed mantras, usually of a single syllable, associated with particular chakras. For example,“LAM” is the seed mantra for the root chakra, and“VAM” for the sacral chakra. In tantric meditation, practitioners can focus on a specific chakra, using its associated mantra bija to stimulate and balance that energy center.
  • Deity mantras: Tantric traditions, as we mentioned above, often involve the veneration of certain deities, each of which embodies particular energies or attributes. Mantras are used to invoke these deities, inviting their energies into meditation practice. An example is the mantra “Om Namah Shivaya“, which invokes the energy of the god Shiva.
  • Japa: Consists of repeatedly chanting or whispering a mantra, often using mala beads (similar to those on a rosary) to keep track. The repetitive nature of Japa meditation, combined with the vibrational essence of the mantra, creates a rhythmic pattern that helps transcend regular thought processes and aids in deep meditation.
  • Visualization of the mantra: Along with verbal repetition, practitioners often visualize the mantra, either in the form of its Sanskrit script or as the deity or energy it represents. This dual approach – sound and visualization – amplifies the impact of the mantra, creating a deeper meditative experience.
  • Integration with other elements: In tantric meditation, mantras are often combined with other practices, such as mudras (sacred hand gestures) and yantras. For example, during meditation, a practitioner may chant the mantra of a deity while visualizing its corresponding yantra and holding a specific mudra.
  • Channeling energy: Tantra places great emphasis on the flow and balance of energy within the body and its alignment with universal energy. Mantras act as tools to channel, amplify and direct this energy, facilitating experiences of heightened awareness and spiritual connection.

Other types of visualization used in tantric meditation

The visualization of deities and the use of yantras and mantras are tools often rooted in ancient traditions and to be practiced effectively require that we learn them from the hand of a person instructed in a tantric tradition. These practices are also often accompanied by a deep study of the symbolic meaning of the deities, yantras and mantras.

Although these elements are the most prominent within Tantra meditation, their complexity may not be adequate for a person just starting out. However, there are a vast number of meditative techniques more accessible to any practitioner. The universal meditation par excellence is that of concentration, either on the breath or on bodily sensations and is the type of meditation that can be found in any spiritual current, such as yoga, Buddhism, Taoism or Sikhism.

Since it is a very well known practice, we are going to leave this type of meditation aside and focus on visualization, since it is used more frequently in Tantra than in other spiritual practices.

One of the fundamentals of Tantra is the control of energy, hence many of the meditation techniques focus on the visualization of energy in its various forms. Below we will describe some of the most common visualizations within Tantric meditation:

Chakra meditation

Los sietes chakras son un mapa para el autodescubrimiento y la conexión con nuestra esencia.

Chakra meditation is an essential practice in various traditions such as Tantra yoga and Kundalini yoga. The process involves concentrating on the chakras one by one, in order to open, balance and purify these energy centers, facilitating an optimal flow of energy through them.

A common practice is to imagine a bright light or flame in each chakra, with the luminosity and color associated with that specific chakra. This light is visualized expanding and rotating clockwise, clearing any obstructions or negative energy.

In addition to visualizations, specific sounds or mantras are often used for each chakra. Repeating these mantras, either silently or aloud, can help attune to the particular vibration of that chakra, facilitating its balance and activation.

Breathing also plays a crucial role in this type of meditation. With each inhalation, one can imagine the energy rising from the base of the spine, and with each exhalation, releasing any tension or blockage.

Some practitioners also incorporate specific yoga postures (asanas) to activate or calm certain chakras. These postures, in combination with meditation, can help direct energy and attention to a specific chakra, helping us to deepen our understanding of it.

Visualization of Kundalini energy

Kundalini represents a latent and potential energy that, when awakened, is said to travel up the spine, activating and purifying the chakras, until it reaches the Sahasrara chakra, located at the crown of the head. In doing so, the practitioner is believed to experience a heightened state of consciousness and spirituality.

To begin with the visualization of Kundalini energy, many practitioners sit in a meditative position, usually in a lotus, half-lotus or easy posture, making sure to keep the spine straight. Attention is first directed to the base of the spine, to the root chakra, where Kundalini is said to sleep, visualizing her as a coiled snake or as a golden or silver light.

As the meditation progresses, one visualizes this energy, or serpent, beginning to awaken, uncoil and slowly ascend. As it rises, the Kundalini is visualized passing through each chakra, purifying and energizing them. As this energy moves upward, one may visualize it as a bright light, fire or even as a flowing liquid, depending on the tradition or the instructions of the guide.

As the Kundalini moves, it is important to be aware of the sensations in the body. Some may feel warmth, tingling or a rising sensation. These sensations are often interpreted as the Kundalini energy moving. Throughout this ascent, it is important to keep the breath centered and deep, facilitating the flow of energy.

Finally, when the Kundalini reaches the seventh and final chakra, at the crown of the head, a blossoming or expansion of energy is visualized as a symbol of direct connection to the divine or the universe. At this point, meditation can lead to a deep sense of peace, euphoria or union with the cosmos.

Tantric Couples Meditation

El Tantra Yoga tiene múltiples beneficios para la salud física y mental.

This is the type of meditation that most people have in their mind when they think of the term tantric meditation. Tantric couple meditation is a technique that fuses spirituality, energy and intimate connection. Unlike what many might think, it is not limited exclusively to the sexual realm. Rather, it is about strengthening the bond between two people, allowing them to connect at deeper levels.

There are many techniques for couple’s meditation but here are the key aspects that cannot be missed in this type of meditation:

  • Find a quiet place, free of distractions. It can be in your bedroom or any space you consider special and private. Light softly with candles, and use incense or essential oils for aromatization. Soft music, such as nature sounds or soothing melodies, can help create a relaxing atmosphere.
  • Sit on the floor facing each other, preferably on cushions or a blanket. It is essential to feel comfortable. You can cross your legs in the lotus position or simply leave them extended, but always be sure to maintain an upright posture.
  • Look into each other’s eyes. The gaze is one of the most powerful channels of connection we possess. At first it may feel awkward or generate laughter, but over time, you will learn to hold your gaze and “communicate” through it.
  • Focus your attention on your breathing. One should breathe in while the other breathes out and vice versa. This opposite breathing will allow you to feel a constant flow of energy between the two of you.
  • Physical contact is fundamental in tantric meditation. You can begin by placing one hand over the other’s heart, feeling its beat and the warmth of his or her body. Then experiment with different points of contact, such as hands or joined foreheads.
  • Imagine a beam of light or energy flowing between you. This energy can ascend and descend, enveloping your bodies in a glowing halo. This light represents your connection, and it is essential to visualize it as intense and pure as possible.
  • If you find it difficult to meditate without structure, you can use guided meditation recordings specifically for couples. These meditations often include visualizations and techniques that can enrich your practice.
  • After meditating, take time to share what you felt. This communication is essential to understanding and deepening your connection.
  • Over time, you can incorporate gentle, mindful movements. These may include massage, stroking or even partner yoga postures.
  • As you become familiar with basic meditation, you can explore more advanced techniques. For example, you can research the chakras and how to balance them as a couple, or practice meditations that focus on the union of masculine and feminine energies.
  • It is essential that both partners feel comfortable and respected throughout the practice. Before you begin, discuss your boundaries and make sure you are both in tune with what you are about to do.
  • Like any meditative practice, tantric meditation as a couple offers greater benefits if done regularly. Set specific times to practice together.

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