"Hollywood types" who apparently think and describe Tantra as just sex, including actress-producer Trudie Styler's announcement about Tantric sex, has been criticised by Hindus.
Acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that Tantrism was a major channel in Indian religious traditions and besides Hinduism, it also exerted considerable influence on Buddhism and Jainism. Sankaracharya had mentioned the names of 64 Tantras.
Trudie Styler (Moving the Mountain) recently reportedly announced at her yoga DVD launch in New York City that "Sadomasochism is the new Tantra".
In the recent past, musician-model-actress Coco Sumner (Stardust) contradicted the tantric-sex sessions of her parents-Oscar nominated musician Sting (Cold Mountain) and Trudie; MTV award winner Heather Graham (The Hangover) sometime back claimed of venturing into tantric sexual healing; BAFTA winner Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation) reportedly practiced the art of tantric sex with boyfriend; the stories circulating about Sting and Trudie having marathon eight-hour tantric-sex sessions for many years; Oscar nominated Woody Harrelson (The People vs. Larry Flynt) reportedly had been linked to tantra; and tantra had been referred to in television and movies like "Meet the Fockers", "Sex and the City", "American Pie", etc.
Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out that Tantra, a method of spiritual self-culture, was divine revelation whose history went back to fourth century. Tantra was a conscious approach to self-discovery which directed the seeker to prepare mind and body to the level where it could withstand any turbulence, both inner as well as outer. Tantras noted three unique states of sadhana (spiritual endeavor)-purification, illumination, and unification.
Rajan Zed further said that Hindus welcomed Hollywood bigwigs to immerse in Hinduism but taking it seriously and not just flirting with its terminology and concepts and using it as a fashion statement. Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken lightly.
Hollywood celebrities needed to have more patience and go beyond the superficial because Hinduism concepts evolved over thousands of years and needed serious study, Zed added.