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What is tantra and how does it work ?

One of our reader asks “What is tantra and how does it work?

Tantra literally means “technology” which means “know how”. You might think of technology as iPhones or planes. But for our ancestors such advanced scientific technology was not available. With the advent of Yoga, our Hindu ancestors focused more on the mind and the universe. Our ancestors asked how can we know everything that is there to be known ? This process was called self realization and the process to achieve it was called Sankhya philosophy.

Yoga philosophy was the extended from Sankhya when the ancients realized that the body is an important part of our existence and we can manipulate our body to achieve lot more than we previously thought.

For example, with right practice of Yoga we can see things others can not see, hear things others can not hear and so on. For an untrained eye this is like magic but it is really not. It was about knowing the super fine aspects of human body and using that knowledge for advanced senses.

What applies to body also applies to universe in general. If you punch someone on forehead it does not pain much, if you punch 1 inche below forehead on the nose the person will feel pain. It is the same punch against the same face but a minor 1 inch difference leads to very different outcome. You may not understand the difference between forehead and nose but you can see how the other person reacts differently after punching.

You can use an iphone but you need not know how it was built or what science goes inside it. Similarly Tantra is a technology of universe that you can mindlessly use without knowing how it works.

For example in matters of love and money Tantra tells us that a full moon night is a great night to perform rituals. This is true. What we may not know or need not know is why full moon night is different from other nights.

Some of the rituals are even more cryptic. Offer a red flower under an Arjuna tree to find lost cattle. Why does this tantra work ? How is red flower under Arjuna tree different from blue flower under Mango tree? You need not now the difference to benefit from this tantra.

The reason why Tantra works is not fully well known. But the realized gurus say that your certain random actions interfere with the finer fabric of universe creating impacts elsewhere. It is also known as Karma. Every action of yours has consequences for future, for you and others. Similarly you can manipulate your karma for right kind of outcomes even if you do not fully understand how it works.

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