Tantra, the Music and the Mystical


The mystical is like music. Once we experience it, we naturally make room for it in our lives. Music is to be found everywhere and so is the mystical. It permeates existence. But whereas we naturally hear music, there is too much noise in our civilisation for us to sense the mystical expressions of the eternal spirit. This is a pity, because when we are aware of them, ordinary happenings become extraordinary and our experience of life becomes magical. There is as much wonder and beauty to be celebrated in the mystical as there is in music, and the way that we regain our capacity to sense its presence is in itself rather mystical: we regain it by opening and awakening to the totality of our being. We become aware of the mystical realm of existence through becoming the full celebration of ourselves.

The way the world quite normally conditions us, it is as though we grow up accustomed to living in only a few rooms of our bodily home. There are rooms we must not enter – rooms like our tenderness, our vulnerability, our out-of-control ecstasy, rooms containing our tears and our fears, even rooms where our passion, playfulness and creativity languish unvisited because one way or another we have learned not to trust going into them. All paths of self-realisation are processes of recovering the full use of our personal home. The recovery brings us happiness and a sense of profound inner freedom because we can go anywhere in ourselves and use all our inner resources. In doing so, at some point we become aware of the mystical – the presence of the spiritual element in ordinary everyday life.

There are all kinds of ways to realise our full potential. Contemporary sexual Tantra has done much to invite people back into themselves. Sex is such an appealing invitation. Zen meditation has the same potential, but far fewer takers. And even though some of what is called Tantra is more about gratification than self-realisation – usually because it doesn’t go further than pleasure – there are enough Tantric paths that do help people to enter some of those “no-entry” rooms. Sensual and erotic intimacy is an exquisite way to reclaim and befriend what we have lost or learned to reject in ourselves.  To make friends with all our inner energies and feelings enriches our being. Simply put, the more of our home we are living in, the more we have to offer and the richer is our experience of everything and everybody. With our whole being available, whether we are making love, chatting with friends, watching a sunset, working on a problem – or yes, listening to music! – our experience is far beyond what is normal. We discover the sublime and the mystical all over our lives. In actual fact, all real Tantra is mystical. If it is not inviting and giving us a way to say Yes to all that we are – to the body, heart and soul of our being – it isn’t Tantra.

Back to the music! It is fitting that it finds its way into Tantric experiences because music has the power to touch us in ways that can help unlock and open those inner doors. It can bring us to tears and to joy or to both at the same time; and the greatest music transports us beyond the ordinary, into the mystic!