Finally. I promised you a while ago, but here is my favorite tantra exercise. I’ve done this one only a few times and have incorporate it in a workshop Yoga for lovers. Every time I do this exercise, I tailor make it, but I will give you the rough guideline here. It’s (for me) a wonderful exercise. A ‘game’ to stimulate senses. Noting more. If you’re new to tantra you might be a bit disappointed, because it has nothing to do with sex. Like the biggest part of tantra has nothing to do with sex. But feel free to experiment with the last part of this exercise. You can make it in whatever you want.
Before you get all excited: you want to have time to do this exercise. Don’t try to squeeze it in between hundreds of other things you have to do. You need to prepare and if you want to enjoy it, I would take one to two hours to do it.
In yoga we try to turn our senses inward, to discover what is living inside of us. The body is mostly seen as a vehicle – or more romantic a temple – where our soul lives in. But the body on its own doesn’t get a lot of attention. In tantra the body is seen as way to reach enlightenment as well. To be able to use our body, we have to get into contact with it again. This exercise can help you ‘sharpen’ your senses.
Preparation tantra exercise
- Make sure you have a blindfold
- Gather 5 up until 10 different fragrances. I use essential oils, incense, my aftershave, crèmes, food and things like that. Something familiar, something the person you do the exercise with likes and maybe something he/she dislikes.
- Gather 5 up until 10 different things you can make sound with. If you play guitar or any other instrument that could be an option. But something simple as a box of matches, a piece of aluminum foil will do as well. Again: you can choose something familiar (morning alarm) and something extraordinary.
- Make a playlist of one hour with songs that have a meaning to your partner and you or just to your partner. Put some evergreens in there with ‘a meaning’. Think of Joe Cocker’s You can leave your head on, Tom Jones’s Sex bomb, Christina Aguilera’s Beautiful.
- Gather up 5 till 10 different to taste. I always have a combination of cheese, olives, chocolate, dates, ginger, fruit, vegetables. I try to find out what my partner likes and dislikes. You can play with the food as well. Grapes in port wine for instance. Or things that don’t have a lot of taste, until you bite into them. Cherry tomatoes always do good. The taste ‘explodes’ out of it, as soon as you bite in them.
- Gather up 5 till 10 different things that your partner can ‘feel’. I use things like feathers to tickle somebody, a toothpick to softly pinch somebody, different fabrics to strike over their skin, a necklace of beads, warm oil and ice cubes.
How to do this tantra exercise
When you do this exercise you need a giver and a receiver. You can decide who will be playing which roll. I mostly do this exercise as a surprise and don’t tell the other person too much what is going to happen.
As soon as you know your roll you prepare all you need (see above) as a giver. You also prepare the room where you want to do the exercise in. It should be a warm, comfortable room. I prefer to have a bed to sit on. Simple because it’s more comfortable for the receiver. Have some pillows on it as well.
Take a shower before you start to prepare. Then ask the receiver to have a long, nice shower. In the meantime you can bring all you need to the room and set everything up. When you are reading with the preparations and have everything installed, the receiver can dry off and get dressed. Guide the receiver to the room. Before the two of you enter, you blindfold the receiver. Guide him/her to the bed and let them find a comfortable sitting posture on the bed.
Give a very small introduction of what is going to happen, without giving too much away. Make clear that the whole exercise will be done in silence. The better you are in maintaining the silence, the stronger the effect. If you want you can add a little guided meditation. Make sure there is no fragrance or sound in the room yet and work as softly as you can.
The strongest sense we have, is our smell. So this is the one you’ll start with. Choose one of your fragrances – the most fragile one is a good start – and move it around slowly under the nose of the receiver. A few seconds it more than enough. Put it away again and wait for two minutes. Now choose the next smell and do the same. Try to alternate in what you choose. If you have lavender mint is a good alternative instead of something in the same ‘range’ as lavender.
Take your time for it, but slowly work through all the fragrances you have chosen. If you like incense choose that as your last option. Light it, make your partner smell it and put it somewhere close. It’s ‘allowed’ to be there now. As long as it is not to overwhelming.
After your last smell you wait again for two or three minutes and then you introduce the first sound. It can be the chorus of your favorite song, a sound bowl or something intense as lighting a match close by the ear of your receiver. I like to alternate between my bits of songs out of my playlist and making some sounds myself. Go through all your sounds the same way as you did with the fragrances. Leaving a little gap in between every sound.
End with a song out of your playlist; followed by the rest of your playlist. You can now have some soft music playing for the rest of the exercise.
Now for my favorite part of this tantra exercise: tasting. Build this up as well and play with it: mixing different tastes. Start with something that hasn’t got a too outspoken taste and to slowly for stronger and stronger. I like to confuse people a little bit, by soaking grapes in port wine or vodka for a while. You want to be nice, but a little bit of teasing is fun as well. Like I said: a cherry tomato is fits in fine. It hasn’t got a lot of taste: until you bit it and it ‘explodes’ in your mouth.
Make your partner smell it first, then slowly touch their lips with the food and finally feed them. You don’t have to limit yourself to solid food. You can give them small sips to drink as well.
This is the most teasing part; the part where you can tough your partner. Take your time for it. Play with feathers, beets, ice cubs, warm oil. One by one. If you do this tantra exercise with your lover (the right one for you) you can give little kisses as well. Maybe warm-up your own lips first with a sip of tea before you give a little kiss. Be creative and playful.
The last sense is sight. So far your partner has been blindfolded. Taking away sight enforces all the other senses. Now you’ve stimulated those you can bring back sight. Come and sit opposite your partner. Carefully take of their blindfold. Make sure to stay quiet a little longer and just look each other in the eyes. After a minute of five you can give your partner a big hug and break the silence. But stay slow.
The first time I tried out this tantra exercise was after reading something about it in a book of Margot Anand. As I said: I have only done it a few times, but every time I did it it was a beautiful experience. I hope you enjoy it as well. Have fun!