by Marc Israel, Jan 2011
I can still see and feel the day that changed my life over two years ago. Walked in to what appeared to be a waiting room with men and women lining benches waiting patiently as if for the birth of a new child. Suddenly a door opened wide and we were ushered inside. Inside, the mood reverent and loving, all sat in silence. Seated before us adorned in a pink fur lined chair and wearing a white dress was Luba. Her appearance was radiant and peaceful, instilling a calming reverence in the room while gently guiding us through tantric principles. Interest piqued I tried to get into the seated lotus pose but settled for my own modified version as my body resisted. I did have one embarrassing moment that evening having fallen asleep during a meditation I had to be awakened by the girl sitting next to me. When the evening ended driving home I was so full of energy and sense of love, I could barely contain myself. All I could think of was wow I love this! Upon arriving home I immediately tried some of the exercises from the meetup was surprised to hear the mesmerizing voice of Luba inside my head. One thought kept buzzing in my head…champagne bubbles …What are they and how can I experience them?
Eager to learn more, I went back for another dose of sensual and sweet tantric medicine. This time, Luba issued a challenge to complete a 40 day homework exercise. Indifferent at the same time anxious and determined to begin I recall saying to myself 40 days I must be nuts to do this! Never the less I was determined to find out for myself if I could recreate a sliver of the feeling I sensed in Luba’s workshop and that night made a commitment to put this to the test.
The first night of the homework I felt extremely relaxed while breathing into the chakras. My first sensation was a pleasant tickling like vibration in the lingam and surrounding area rising as I focused on each chakra. Something was coming alive and I was ready for more! Humm Champagne bubbles! Excited but perplexed I wondered how is it possible to breathe where lungs are not and still feel so good! I was beginning to feel hooked on the power of breath.
Driven even more by the previous night, I felt compelled to continue. On the second night, I hit another virgin territory – the heart and light & dark sessions. Again, not expecting anything but to witness, I continued on with my tantric quest. You see, for many years I had been unable to feel emotion such as tears and laughter. It seemed to occur after my brother’s death when I walked into his hospital room and saw his body hooked up to all sorts of tubes and I could not speak. A lump formed in my throat and I had to leave the room. Months later while living out West he died. Until that night I was unaware that I never forgave myself for that day in the hospital and this exercise somehow was the stimulus I needed to release years of hidden pain. I felt humbled and liberated that night as tears streamed down my face and I began the process of being closer to my pain. I was now ready to move forward with my life.
Each exercise made me stronger; I could not get enough of this! It is time to see what meditation is all about. I remember in the last couple of years I had been intrigued with yoga and meditation but never made an attempt to experience either one, Now, sitting silently in a cross legged pose and tracing my breath in and out, it was hard to sit there in a position my body found to be very foreign to me . First I wanted to stop, but I kept going and I am so glad I did! Soon muscles I never new I had gave way and to relaxation. Ahhhhh it felt so good! In the coming weeks, my body went deeper and deeper into relaxation. One memorable experience I had took me so deep that I had to come out of it to see if my arms and legs were still there. Happy to report they were… Woooooooo!
When the 40th day arrived I was a new person. One of the benefits I felt was a more restful, deeper and peaceful sleep. Before the homework, I lay awake at night for hours until exhausted. Secondly, I felt more relaxed and alert throughout the day. . I was beginning to know my body. Eager to hear how everyone felt after the 40 day homework, I asked everyone at the next session how their experience went. I must admit I was disappointed no one had tried it. I was taken aback but grateful, so I vowed to continue to practice everything Luba showed us and continue sharing my experiences in hopes of being a catalyst to the practice.
I loved what I had learned from my 40 day test and was convinced this path was for me. Seeking further guidance, I approached Luba. She suggested two books, both by Daniel Odier, “Tantric Quest” and “Desire Awakening.” The books were so enlightening and I highly recommend them. This was what I really needed to understand sacred Tantra and begin my own tantric quest.
Next it was time to loosen up the body and prepare my body to learn my favorite yoga pose – the half lotus. This was no easy task, as I soon discovered. Training my body began with the butterfly but I soon discovered I needed more. My inner thigh muscles were like rods of steel. At first I thought I was feeling bone but recalling my anatomy I realized it had to be muscle. Searching the internet I learned a rocking technique. That, in conjunction with the butterfly and a massage technique, I found within a month that I able to touch both heels to the lingam area and a month later the half lotus. One of the most fascinating experience I had loosening my rigid muscles was the day they released. When I suddenly felt a rush of energy and a tingling arousing sensation extending from both inner thighs throughout all of my pelvis, and then it was gone forever. Once it was gone, my muscles stayed loose.
Another step I highly recommend is attendance at Luba’s retreats. My first was Barefoot Tantra located in the Berkshires. In just one weekend, we experienced the feeling of growing very close as a group with attendees from all over New England. Some of the things we did were; advanced yoga poses, Kundalini yoga, partner yoga, role playing, working thru various experiences in small groups and grounding the body with the earth feeling every part of the foot as we connected our hearts with it. Another beautiful retreat exercise was sensory awareness; that of taste, smell, touch while being blindfolded and lovingly spoon fed by a partner. I must admit that it was so sensual and so delicious savoring every flavor and texture that I can’t wait to do it again. In the evening we were entertained by fire spinning and we all broke out into dancing and a puja…. I loved the free flowing dance drums which were instilled in me. This event was timed perfectly. Most importantly, we gained a deep sense of community, in which to this day I feel a strong connection to those people from Boston, New York and beyond.
On occasion, I have had the blessing of practicing white tantric principles out of class with various goddesses and I have had some beautiful experiences breathing together, energizing each other’s chakras while rising in Kundalini energy together. It is such a beautiful experience. One of the most exciting things about witnessing this practice in person, is feeling that same energy over the phone while silently meditating and listing to each other’s breath until once again the sounds of Kundalini energy rising became apparent.. I also recommend practicing with David Deida who has some great tapes.
The last experience I would like to share is my trip to NYC to participate in sound healing with Shri Param Eswaran the author of a unique form of Sound Healing. The experience taught me of the beauty and tremendous power sound healing has on every cell of our bodies. After doing this all day and into the night and witnessing the release of so many emotions from those being healed, I was sure nothing else would happen. But on the way home suddenly I felt the energy rising and I broke out in uncontrollable laughter, Wow! What a powerful experience. Arriving home I was amazed at how smooth my face felt and looked which was proof to me of sound healing properties. If you have not experienced this, you can see it first hand at the White Tantra Healing sessions in Boston performed by Luba or Ron.
In closing, I am so grateful for the 40 day homework and all the tantric principles. For peaceful sleep and my dreams returning for the love I feel in my heart, the growing awareness of my body, the importance of staying present and the peace breath and meditation instilled. I am forever grateful to so many people (and you know who you are, there is just too little space to write your names) being there much as the marriage vows say, in sickness and in health. This experience has been life changing for me and I love sharing what I have learned. My quest is to incorporate Tantra into every facet of my life. Tantra has changed my life forever!!
.. I would like to close with two poems. One I wrote after the beautiful Barefoot weekend retreat and the second upon seeing Galiana sit upon its foundation. .
The Power of One
As each raindrop emerges with another so our hearts becomes as one
One drop here one drop there mixing with the others
So may our thoughts become as one, blending with the others
You just never know what the outcome may be
Puddle, pond, lake or stream… somewhere in between
Or maybe, maybe, just maybe a river of thought becomes a sea
Let us all be that rain drop
Mirrors of the soul one drop at a time
Galiana Light of Change
A light upon the hill nestled among the autumn leaves
A beacon of hope for all who come, to learn to be… be free
Guiding, nurturing sacred thoughts are what I see
Spring forth her love; hope of peace, joy and tranquility.
Soon her doors will open wide, beaconing all to come inside
Bring forth your tears; your fears and be as one no one is left behind
United as a body equal are we
Mirrors of the soul we fulfill each others divine destiny