Mark A Michaels & Patricia Johnson
"Tantra uses touch as the primary sensory avenue for the focusing of the mind...and when sexual sensation expresses itself in orgasm, the bursting or climax, we achieve a state of yoga, or union."
Those looking for a general introduction to Tantric Yoga will find this an invaluable and informative book.
Based on the lectures given by Dr Jonn Mumford (aka Swamiji, or Swami Anandakapila) and developed further by the authors, Essence gives an insight into the practical exercises and techniques available for the western Tantrika (practitioner), as well as a greatly expounded explanation for those unfamiliar with Tantric sexuality.
Rudimentary instructions begin with some basics -- the use of yantras, or symbols, for visualization techniques; and mudras, hand gestures or body positions, used for creating psychophysical change.
Following these lessons, the authors then delve into various sexual aspects, reminding the reader that it is the process of getting to an orgasm that is more important than the actual climax itself. Essence deals with various exercises and rituals in order for men and women, individually or as a couple, to make that journey more fun, more rewarding, and more fulfilling so that the climax becomes the culmination of an already-exciting discovery process -- ultimately a meeting with the divine.
They deal with sexuality in a straightforward, very matter-of-fact, and graphic manner.
Those willing to approach with an open mind and a teachable spirit will find a lot of material here to help understand many aspects of sexual pleasure, not only between two people, but also individually.
The authors cover many different areas of inducing pleasure, including masturbation, sexual fantasies, the use of perfumes and massage, and an in-depth look at the erogenous zones in men and women (and, yes, there are more than two!).
Later in the book, similarities are drawn between the symbology of Tantra and other religions and beliefs, including the Catholic Mass.
If you can handle the graphic sexual descriptions and illustrations, this is indeed a book with information worth perusing, studying, and practicing.