The Essence of Tantric Sexuality

TantraTake your sex life from ordinary to extraordinary with this fun and easy-to-use beginner’s guide to authentic Tantra.

Explore new and surprising sources of sensual delight with fifty-four Tantric techniques for enhancing intimacy and deepening pleasure. Proving that Tantric lovemaking doesn’t have to take hours, Tantra experts Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson present straightforward, simple practices that anyone can do. Along with fundamental principles of Tantric sex, you will discover amazing ways to prolong arousal, physically and spiritually satisfy your partner, maximize sexual bliss, and reach higher states of consciousness.

The Essence of Tantric Sexuality

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Praise for The Essence of Tantric Sexuality

“Patricia Johnson and Mark Michaels have written a compassionate and accessible guide to an often mysterious but valuable tradition, and made it relevant for today’s readers who want to find more connection, spirituality, and care in their lives and love.” – Naomi Wolf, author of Vagina: A New Biography and The Beauty Myth

Great Sex Made Simple is at once fun and easy to use yet deeply attuned to the very essence of what our best sexual experiences can be.” – Suzie Heumann, Founder of

“Here is almost-or perhaps a little more than-everything you wanted to know about the ancient esoteric exploratory arts of loving and mind expansion. . . . Attempting to re-instill the erotic wonder that is each of us in the universe, the author-couple has scribed a sort of deep sex-ed book for adults. The clearly written text is not only a how-to book to augment your love lives, but a history of modern sexual attitudes and suggestions for their wholesale, healthy revamping.” – Dorion Sagan, co-author of Death and Sex, winner of the 2009 New York Bookbinders Award

“Partnered or solo, Great Sex Made Simple bridges the gap between the religious, mystic and basic sexological principles that work to help increase awareness, intimacy, connection, and take your sex to the next level.” – Dr. Sonia Borg, Ph.D,. Sex Therapist and author of Oral Sex He’ll Never Forget, Oral Sex She’ll Never Forget, Spectacular Sex Moves He’ll Never Forget, Spectacular Sex Moves She’ll Never Forget, and Marathon Sex

“Michaels and Johnson’s Great Sex Made Simple is one of the best books I have read on making the more esoteric Tantric techniques accessible and down to earth for real people wanting really good sex.” – Tammy Nelson, PhD, Board Certified Sexologist and Author of Getting the Sex You Want and The New Monogamy

“If you want to improve your sex life, deepen your connection with your partner, or develop an experiential knowledge of what Tantric sex is all about, Great Sex Made Simple is for you. Great Sex Made Simple stands apart for being straightforward, practical and user-friendly.” – Dr. Patti Britton, Co-Founder of SexCoachU and Director of the Sex Coaching Program at The Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality

“An excellent basic introduction to the magick of Tantra . . . Easy and fun to read and absorb, use and explore.” – Shama Helena Malin, host of The Indulgence Show on the Sex Talk Radio Network and The Pleasure Paradigm

“A must read both for those who are just starting out and for those who are eager to dig deep.” – Pamela Madsen, author of Shameless: How I Ditched the Diet, Got Naked, Found True Pleasure. . .And Somehow Got Home in Time to Cook Dinner

“Great Sex Made Simple is a sumptuous book to savor.” – Nan Wise, Ph.D., Cognitive Neuroscience at Rutgers-Psychology, and Certified Sex Therapist

“Mark Michaels and Patricia Johnson bring an essential, engaging, and groundbreaking perspective to Tantra and sexuality.” – Dr. Ruth Neustifter, Sex and Intimacy Educator, author of The Nice Girl’s Guide to Talking Dirty

“This wise book reveals that the ultimate secret to sex is YOU-your attitudes, your presence, your ability to move energy. Mark Michaels and Patricia Johnson offer a rich trove of suggestions to expand mind, body, heart, and spirit to help you journey to a fully erotic sense of self and relationship.” – Gina Ogden, PhD, LMFT, author of The Heart & Soul of Sex, Women Who Love Sex, and The Return of Desire

“Mark Michaels and Patricia Johnson explore the Tantric approach to human sexuality at a level that has not been reached since the age of the great Indian texts such as the Koka Shastra and the Ananga Ranga.” -Dr. Jonn Mumford, author of Ecstasy Through Tantra and A Chakra and Kundalini Workbook

“Written with a sense of humor and avoiding theoretical overload, this is the ideal first book for everyone interested in making Tantra a part of their lives.” – Donald Michael Kraig, author of Modern Sex Magick


Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson

“The history of Tantra in the Western world is a checkered one,” note Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson, a devoted married couple who have been teaching Tantra and Kriya yoga together since 1999. “Serious attempts to both understand and explain Tantric traditions to Westerners have long been hampered by common misconceptions that Tantra is somehow scandalous, depraved and even tantamount to black magic.” In their highly anticipated new book The Essence of Tantric Sexuality (Llewellyn Worldwide, July 2006), Michaels and Johnson do for Tantra what Kinsey or Masters and Johnson did for human sexuality: they clear the air, explaining Tantra with a frank, powerful and commonsense examination of the history, principles, and practices of the authentic Tantric. The result is a book which encourages a reverence for the body and its potential for ecstasy and an appreciation for the body as an obvious, natural asset in the spiritual quest, rather than an evil saboteur of it.

“Tantra gets at the heart of the most profound and sacred mystery, the essential activity of human life, both in terms of the species and in terms of its potential for connecting us with the transcendent,” note the authors, whose book demystifies both Tantra’s terminology and symbols and offers a wealth of explanatory diagrams. Drawing on the historic – not to mention delightful and unconventional – lectures of Dr. Jonn Mumford (Swami Anandakapila) as well as rare personal interviews and study with Dr. Mumford, Michaels and Johnson have made it their mission to share Dr. Mumford’s rare gift for placing authentic Hindu Tantra, including its sexual aspects, within a conceptual framework that makes it accessible to Westerners, without overemphasizing sexuality, watering down the teachings or coating them with New-Age trappings. Michaels and Johnson offer detailed descriptions of these and other practices – as well as advanced esoteric information – which, for the most part, have been kept secret:

  • Profound Kriya Yoga techniques to regulate the flow of Prana or vital physical and psychic energies, inducing deep states of relaxation and higher levels of consciousness.
  • Vama Marga Tantra practices for focusing the mind and prolonging the excitement phase and discovering new sexual dimensions
  • Concrete methods of masturbation and other visualization techniques which help partners find divinity in the most familiar and yet most challenging of places.
  • Practices of perfume magic, which operates on the most subtle level and draws on the strong connection between the olfactory sense and the unconscious.
  • An examination of the Tantric Erogenic Zones or Kama Marmas, an understanding of these zones’ erotic power and an exploration of how these zones can be explored in a systematic, methodical way.
  • Cycles of massage techniques for altering consciousness.
  • The secret of Amrita, the deepest teachings of Tantra and the key to achieving true spiritual life.

“The greatest challenge a human being can face is that of actually evolving through involvement in a relationship,” note Michaels and Johnson. “Relationships are extraordinarily complex and challenging, and one always has the option to decide whether or not it is worth it.” Neither a sex nor relationship manual, The Essence of Tantric Sexuality offers couples a way of committing and recommitting themselves to relationships, with practices to aid them in maintaining an attitude of reverence toward a partner and in striving for parity, equality and kindness and ultimately experiencing transcendence.


– USA Book News National Best Books 2007 Award in Health: Sexuality