Advanced Yoga Practices
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Ancient Advice on Tantric
Date: Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:52pm
It is recommended you read from the beginning of this tantra yoga archive,
as previous lessons are prerequisite to this one. The first lesson is, "What
is tantra yoga?"
Back in 1957, a little book was published in Japan called "Zen
Flesh, Zen Bones: A collection of Zen and Pre-Zen writings," compiled and
transcribed by Paul Reps and Nyogen Senzaki. It includes writings from some
ancient Indian scriptures. Several of these, the 4,000 year old Vigyan
Bhairava and Sochanda Tantra, plus another, were combined to form the 112
techniques called "Centering Practices." This is an all-encompassing survey
of the techniques of tantra yoga, covering both right-handed and left-handed
The 112 techniques are a few lines each, and, all together,
fill up a few pages.
As was discussed in the first lesson here,
tantra is the broadest of all the yoga systems, leaving nothing unattended
as a tool of spiritual transformation. Virtually all of the lessons of
AdvancedYogaPractices are touched on in one way or another in the 112
techniques, which is amazing, because they were not used as a guide for
writing the lessons. What is true in yoga today was just as true, and was
documented, 4,000 years ago.
You will recall that the principle of
brahmacharya is at the heart of managing sexual energy for spiritual
purposes. Brahmacharya is preservation and cultivation of sexual energy.
This is accomplished in particular ways in sitting practices, and in other
ways during tantric sexual relations.
Technique #43 of the 112
techniques captures the essence of tantric sex, and contains within it all
of the sexual practices discussed in the lessons:
"At the start of
sexual union, keep attention on the fire in the beginning, and, so
continuing, avoid the embers in the end."
From this one sentence, all
of tantric sexual methods can be derived. In fact, volumes have been written
to expound upon it. The late Osho/Rajneesh, the famed tantra guru, wrote a
1,000-page book expounding on the 112 techniques. It is called "The Book of
Secrets," published in 1974.
Nothing is new in yoga. The human
nervous system functions the same today as it did thousands of years ago. It
is just a matter of understanding the underlying principles involved in
human spiritual transformation. Once we know those, it is easy to evaluate
the efficacy of spiritual practices, and integrate them into a simple,
powerful routine that can alter our lives, opening us up to unending
The guru is in you.
Related Lessons Topic Path
Discuss this Lesson in the AYP Plus Support Forum
detailed instructions on the methods of tantra in relation to the broad
scope of yoga practices and the enlightenment process,
see the AYP Tantra book,
and AYP Plus.
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