Surrender to the White Tantric Yoga Experience
By Shakta Kaur
(aka Susan P. Kezios)
- Published in Yoga Chicago
For those of us walking a spiritual path, meditation acts to connect us to that aspect of ourselves that does not change. Meditation can result in clearing past karmas, releasing toxic emotions and disposing of any and all energies that interfere with our being in the moment. The ultimate goal of meditation is saibhang, a self-illumined, radiant awareness of God. But how do we develop ourselves to reach this subtle, refined and spiritual dimension
- one that transforms our lives as well as our relationships? For many, the intense meditation practice of white tantric yoga is the key that unlocks this door and accelerates spiritual development.
Our minds release a thousand thoughts in the blink of an eye. Some of those thoughts get lost in the unconscious and some get stuck in the subconscious to eventually affect the unconscious mind. These thoughts become feelings, emotions, desires, fantasies or multi-realities. Too often, instead of mastering our minds, our minds and thoughts master us. Consequently, we make impulsive decisions, communicate poorly and create stressful situations for ourselves.
In the words of Yogi Bhajan, master of kundalini yoga, and the acknowledged white tantric master (known as the Mahan Tantric),
"White tantric yoga enables you to break through these subconscious
blocks so that you can have a more enjoyable life. In the shortest
time, you can experience release from a lot of the burden and extra
weight that you carry in your head. As you see and act on each
moment with clarity, you will gain a deeper understanding of
yourself and your life will change. Your mind, body and soul will
act together as one. This is the path to personal freedom and
awareness and will bring more success to every area of your life."
About the Mahan Tantric
Yogi Bhajan became a master of kundalini yoga at the age of 16 in his native India. He brought kundalini yoga to the West in the late 1960s.
In 1971, when the presiding Mahan Tantric, Lama Lilan Po of Tibet, passed from his body, he bestowed upon Yogi Bhajan the authority to be Mahan Tantric. There is only one Mahan Tantric in the world at a time. That same year, Yogi Bhajan decided to open white tantric yoga to anyone who wanted this powerful experience and offered the first course in Los Angeles. For the next decade and a half, Yogi Bhajan traveled throughout the world presenting as many as 30 white tantric courses each year to thousands. Since 1987 white tantric yoga, which can only be practiced under the guidance of the Mahan Tantric, has been offered on video.
How It Works
Envision the energy of the universe as parallel and perpendicular in nature, like a cloth woven together. As a cloth becomes stronger when it is stretched on the diagonal, so does the white tantric diagonal, or
"Z" energy strengthen the participants. This energy, when directed by the Mahan Tantric, cuts through the blocks that are stuck in the subconscious mind. Using the diagonal Z energy, the Mahan Tantric connects his subtle body to the subtle bodies of the participants through the course facilitator. (The subtle body is the medium of the subtle sensitivity of communication with others and with the environment. At the time of death, the subtle body is said to carry the soul to the infinite.) The process works in the same way as a worldwide telephone system that relies on satellites and electromagnetic energy in order to connect two parties.
White tantric yoga should not be confused with black or red tantric. These forms of yoga also transform energy, but in a different way and for different purposes. Black tantric directs the energy to manipulate another human being, and red tantric directs the energy for sexual purposes.
White tantric yoga is done in pairs as a group meditation. Each person sits facing a partner and follows instructions for meditation given on video by the Mahan Tantric, Yogi Bhajan. Every course is facilitated in person by a representative of the Mahan Tantric. Each white tantric yoga course consists of between six and eight kriyas. A kriya is a meditation incorporating a yoga posture (asana), a hand position (mudra), a mental focus or breathing technique (pranayam) and/or a mantra. Sometimes the meditations are accompanied by music. These kriyas vary in length from 31 to 62 minutes. There are breaks between each kriya. The environment is peaceful and the atmosphere is friendly, supportive and uplifting.
The most difficult thing for a first-timer is sitting for seven to nine hours in a crossed-legged position for the 31-
to 62-minute kriyas. Even though breaks are taken between each kriya, many participants have not had an all-day meditation experience. The participants can bring a soft mat, blanket or sheepskin to sit on as well as any other meditation aids that they normally use.
What to expect
There are no prerequisites for participating in white tantric yoga. Beginners will tune into their internal energies and enjoy a deep and sometimes challenging meditative experience. More advanced meditators will deepen their experience and make new inroads in their spiritual awareness.
All participants wear loose, comfortable, white clothing and a white cotton head covering (white combines all the colors and enhances the magnetic field surrounding us and the strength of our auras). White tantric yoga is practiced with the feet uncovered. Because this is a cleansing process, participants are asked to drink plenty of water. By keeping the body sattvic (free from stimulating foods, i.e., caffeine, alcohol and meat products), participants will have a more energized meditative experience.
Although this is a group experience, the meditation experience is personal for each person. As in all meditations practitioners get the most benefit by keeping their focus on what the kriya is. Participants learn to surrender to whatever is going on around them, which they can't control.
It is hard to say what new participants will experience. Some might not know how they feel. Others might want to know how to continue the feeling and integrate it into their being and lifestyle. Whether or not they meditate as part of a personal sadhana (practice) after white tantric yoga, this single day's worth of meditation will be processed for 40 subsequent days. It is recommended that participants pick a particular meditation to practice for the 40 days immediately after white tantric yoga to augment the cleansing process.
For most people, the experience of white tantric yoga is life-changing. As the Mahan Tantric, Yogi Bhajan, has said,"Spend
a day and give yourself the gift to fortify your spirit as you walk
The quotations in this article, as well as the explanations of concepts, were used with permission from
The Aquarian Teacher, KRI International Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training Level One (Santa Cruz, New Mexico: © YB Teachings, LLC).
Shakta Kaur (Susan P. Kezios) is a certified kundalini yoga and meditation instructor, who has her own Chicago studio, Kundalini Yoga in the Loop, in the Fine Arts Building, 410 S. Michigan Ave., Suite 514; 312.922.4699; www.shaktakaur.com.
Tales of a Tantric Yogi
By S.S. Shiva Singh Khalsa
published in Yoga Chicago January 2002
We had just finished our first 6 days of silence and White Tantric Yoga near Orlando, Florida. It was 1972 and we were young seekers who had come to see this Yogi Bhajan. The neighbors at Baba Siri Chand Ashram were very upset when 200 young people showed up at Winter Solstice, chanting next door. The state police escorted us out to a very unsacred trailer park.
We sat then as we do now, in lines facing partners. Typically, men face women, although sometimes it did not matter. We sat in the sun, and sometimes the rain, meditating for segments of time as long as 62 minutes. We often looked into each other's eyes the whole time. This is called Tantric Tratakam, the gaze into the eyes of the partner, the merging of identities to which the individual egos and personalities which lead us to separateness and block our experience of Oneness, are blended so we experience the Tantra -the place where time and space are no longer relevant. It is the presence of the Mahan Tantric or his facilitator, which keeps the individual identities separate and allows us to release enormous past and present karmas, subconscious pain and negativity and the samskaras that drag the vibratory frequency of the soul down so it can't liberate.
During the exercises, we use Pranayam, Tantric Tratakam, Chanting, Postures and Mudra. It was and has always been challenging to do White Tantric. Sitting for 62 minutes alone is difficult, but to go through the exceptional transformation of mind, body and soul is possible because of what is called the diagonal, zigzag energy which runs through you to the person next to your partner, etc. It is this powerful group consciousness that allowed us to Keep Up and go through what we normally would avoid.
Yogi Bhajan had been very direct about how important it is not to practice without the presence of the Mahan Tantric. We had no idea of the reality of practicing White Tantric Yoga, but hey, we were young Americans! Some of my friends did it anyway. The day after a Tantric Course, they practiced the same meditations as they remembered them and lay down for a relaxation. They went into a deep sleep for over 12 hours! After their experience we all became believers!
In 1971, Yogi Bhajan told his secretary that he had just become the Mahan Tantric. Her curiosity led her to ask what he meant and he explained that when he was a young man he studied with a very great saint, Sant Hazara Singh and this saintly yogi was the Mahan Tantric. There is only one Mahan Tantric on the earth at a time. Yogiji knew he was the best student studying with him, so he was convinced that the power of the Mahan Tantric would be passed on to him. But because of this thought, this expression of ego, when Santji passed on the power it went to another disciple who had subsequently died and this was how Yogiji became the Mahan Tantric.
During White Tantric, the infinite energy of the universe flows through the Mahan Tantric into all the participants. Partners face each other in straight lines while the Mahan tantric projects his Astral Body to encircle the group so his psycho-electro-magnetic field extends to encompass the group aura. This prevents the auras of the partners, which carry the imprints of subconscious negativity from past lifetimes, from merging and also prevents destinies from entwining. There is often a tremendously energizing effect of personal victory following a course, and the most immediate effects last for 40 days after the course.
I once asked one of the Tantric Facilitators, who act as satellites for the Mahan Tantric, what it was like to sit in that seat. She explained that there is a field of energy that builds a foot and a half above the heads of the meditators. It swirls like an upside down tornado and ultimately flows through her body. She suggested that when the exercise gets physically painful or the mind is filled with negativity, difficult memories or haunting thoughts, we can lift them up into the moving field above our heads and it sweeps them away. After that information, I started trying it out. To my astonishment, it worked as predicted. Subconscious patterns that had been with me from childhood were gone forever. The other nice part of this is that the physical discomfort of sitting can also be eased through lifting it up to not even be a memory.
During White Tantric Yoga, there are people who are charged with monitoring the participants and the process. The monitors can sit in for a meditator if they need a break and help the Facilitator keep the lines straight. I've had the rare opportunity as an experienced monitor to sit in for the Facilitator during a meditation. My first thought was how fun it was to sit up there for the first time. In a matter of moments however, my spine straightened and I was immediately in a deep meditative state, feeling expansive, timeless and effortlessly powerful. Our facilitator returned in what seemed the wink of an eye, but was actually several minutes.
Power and energy is neutral, it is how it is manifest that determines its effect. Black Tantric allows a person to use the energy to manipulate another person for his or her own benefit without regard to consequences. Red Tantric is the form most Americans think of as Tantric with the emphasis on sexual activity to achieve transcendent states. Sex sells and there is an abundance of books and workshops that offer this to enhance one's love life. According to the Mahan Tantric, this form is very rarely practiced properly and should only be practiced in an established marriage relationship, otherwise there is far too much opportunity for abuse.
White Tantric Yoga is the form in which the both partners experience personal transformation without a negative impact on either one. It is the jewel of the Tantric realm.