People coming to tantra for the first time generally have a question in their minds: Is it really possible to integrate sexuality and spirituality? Is it really possible to do (or be) both?

I certainly had that question, at the outset. Given the way I was brought up, spirituality was up here, and sexuality was down there–a never-discussed subject that was as much a source of guilt and shame as it was a source of pleasure.

People who have practiced tantra have a different question: They wonder if true spirituality is possible without integrating sexuality.

Think about it. How many politicians get in trouble for sexual episodes, even though they have everything to lose by doing so? How many religious leaders are caught in such foibles, even though their religion tells them it’s a sin?

The fact is that sexuality is a powerful force. And it is relentless! It is not going away any time soon. It is a matter of survival, like the need for air, for food, for water. It does not simply go away because someone decides they want to be “spiritual”. So, when people don’t integrate sexuality and spirituality, it’s very difficult to be spiritual! You can only be “spiritual” for short periods of time before you’re “dragged back” into a world (you think) you would rather forget.

But consider this: What if sex brought you closer to God? What if, in a committed relationship, sex with your partner was so powerfully fulfilling, so joyfully ecstatic, that you could not possible conceive of anything better? What if, in that very moment, your consciousness expanded, allowing you to see the perfection of God’s universe, and to bask in the grace of God’s love?

And what if you had a meditation practice that would allow you to prepare yourself for that moment– one that you could continue while in the throes of sexual union?

That practice is Ipsalu Tantra.

Remember: sex is a powerful force. And spirituality is a desirable goal. When you yoke the two, you harness a powerful engine that drives your spiritual growth. It’s kind of like getting into an Indy race car. Your destination is the same, but man, you sure do get there in a hurry!

Eric Armstrong

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