The objective of Tantra yoga is to awaken the Kundalini located at the base of the spine. It aims to achieve perfect unity between this energy center and the crown chakra, also called Lord Shiva. A state of perfect harmony can be reached through constant practice that involves chanting the holy name, offering prayers and engaging in various rituals.
Swami Gnaneshwara Bharati, has embodied the tenets of tantra yoga in these words: “The journey of tantra is to know them both (Shiva and Shakthi), at once, as one. Through the process of Kundalini awakening, the two are eventually experienced in their state of union". Rightly then, the goal of Tantra Yoga is the union of the dynamic (Shakti) and static (Shiva) aspects of the personality.
It is recommended to pick up the nuances of Tantra yoga from a guru or preceptor. Tantra practice or sadhana involves:
- Bhuta Suddhi (tantric rite)- which helps to purify the five elements of which the body is composed. The body of the person practising it (sadhaka’s) becomes a fit vehicle to receive the light of the goddess.
- Nyasa (a powerful tantric rite) involves placing the tips of the fingers of the right hand on various parts of the body and reciting mantras.
- Kavacha (means protection) – The Supreme Lord is invoked with different names to protect the different parts of the body of the aspirant.
- Mudra – They are gestures performed by the hands, consisting of 108 mudras. Mudras delight the different deities invoked and an appropriate gesture is made to welcome a particular deity.
- Yantra – It is a diagram drawn on paper or a metal sheet and revered as an object of worship. Yantra is considered as the body of the deity and is appropriated to a specific deity only. The yantra is empowered with divine energy when the practitioner or sadhaka meditates upon the deity and invokes the powers of the deity into the yantra by reciting the appropriate chants or mantra that are vital to kindle the powers of the deity.
The essence of Tantra Yoga reverberates in the words of Soundarya Lahiri, which says, “only when Shiva is united with Shakthi does he have the power to create.”
Therapeutic Aspect of Tantra Yoga
Tantra Yoga focuses on spiritual healing. It helps in better utilization of energies locked in our lower chakras. This will eventually empower us to lead our daily lives efficiently.