Tantra is an ancient spiritual approach that is more known than truly understood. When people first hear about tantra they usually assume that it has something to do with exotic, oriental sexual practices, or perhaps with amorous positions from well-known Kama Sutra. However tantra is much more than erotic spiritual practices. Tantra is difficult to define, as it is neither a religion nor a philosophical approach. Tantra is a practical spiritual path that aims for the fast awakening of consciousness. In its essence tantra is the spiritual approach to live one’s life consciously. This includes all the aspects of our life, our sexuality yes, but also other aspects of our existence: our work, our relationship with ourselves and others, our family-life and spiritual aspirations.
Tantra is based upon universal principles that are discovered through personal practice. There is no blind fate in tantra. What does not work, can be thrown aside. Fancy theories alone are not useful. The techniques and modalities that bring the desired inner transformations are the ones that are valued in tantra.
The modalities used in tantric spiritual practice are esoteric practice of asanas (the yogic body positions), breath work (pranayama), mental exercises and meditation, rituals, the use of mantras (sacred sounds), yantras (sacred geometry) and mudras (sacred gestures), as well as the contemplation of spiritual art. Erotic tantric practices consist of learning to awaken and use our sexual, creative life-force to empower higher aspects of consciousness through inner alchemy.
Tantra is not learned from books or internet. It is a tradition that is passed from a teacher to a student through a spiritual lineage. I recommend to study tantra in the guidance of an authentic teacher who is dedicated to her or his own teacher. Spiritual lineage is the safety net that protects the tantric practitioners from the traps of selfishness and spiritual arrogance (also called the spiritual ego).
The guiding principle in tantra is LOVE. Love is the medicine against illusion.