11/18/07

Tantra.com's New Site

Tantra.com’s new site is delayed. We are hoping to unveil it on Monday November 26 just a few days before I arrive back home from India. It was originally scheduled to go up several months ago but we have had trouble with our Flash video players so things have been delayed. We’ll have a lot more free videos and much more in the Premium Content Area too. Please come on by when you can and take a look. We heartily invite feedback so please don’t hesitate. We really like the design and the functionality of the site, in all areas, should be vastly improved.
There are many things we had to put on the ‘after we unveil the new site’ list including some kind of social networking so please visit often to see what’s new. I think you’ll enjoy the videos that are conversations I had with Patricia and Mark from TantraPM. They are of a more advanced nature and these are very articulate Tantrikas so do take time to watch them once the new site is up.
Love,
Suzie

India Journal - Speculation on the Erotic Temples Coming

At a future date, most likely when I get back, I want to write about the temples and carvings at Khajurahu. Most of what I will write may be pure speculation but that is the fun of it because the truth is no one really knows what to think of these temples. Scholars will say one thing and guides will tell another. I have some ideas, too. They’re a bit more on the intuitive side but I like that part. It gets me to thinking and it makes me think between the lines. Dawn, my daughter, has taken many pictures so I’ll have illustrations for what I speculate. Of course, there are many possibilities and scenarios so I’ll look forward to comments, ideas and out-right arguments. Stay tuned.
Love,
Suzie

India Journal - A Dream and an Idea

I get many questions about the most basic aspects of sex from Indians. I mean basic. Last week I found myself waking out of a dream that had me writing a sex manual, no a modern Kama Sutra, for Indians. I would get a grant from some of my wealthy friends who would support this kind of project. A big grant. I would write a great, witty yet brilliant book for every Indian whether they lived in a village at the edge of Pakistan or Bangla or in a big city like Delhi. It would be FREE TO ANYONE WHO WANTED IT. I wouldn’t put my name on it both out of an attitude of ‘give-away’ and in fear that there might be some kind of backlash against me! It would be printed and handed out through women’s unions, NGOs, handi-craft organizations and health care initiatives. Women would have to keep it secret but they would talk about it when the men were gone doing what ever it is they do during the day.
My daughter Dawn, whom I’m traveling with in India, laughed at me when I told her my idea. “What am I thinking, she asks?” “How can that possibly happen?”
I guess she is right, though I have to admit I like the idea a lot. How do we help when we see something that is in need of help? Someone said that ‘All the suffering in the world is caused by un-happy people’. If we can help people be happy, if we can supply a possibility to them, if we can provide a ‘vehicle’ by which to transport someone then why shouldn’t we try? I know that it would ‘gum up the works’ so to speak. Cause a mini-revolution in a way, but why not? I don’t much like the way the world is going, anyway. Why not supply knowledge and understanding and happiness. The paths are many but the destination is always the same – empowerment and happiness leads to compassion and LOVE. Then maybe war wouldn’t take hold of us so strongly. We would be happy people and that would lead to much less suffering.
Love,
Suzie

India Journal - I'm Having a Hard Time With...

It is very difficult for me to see how a Hindu in India could have ever, at one time, understood, embraced and practiced the Kama Sutra let alone the Tantric Arts. It is as though sexuality, regardless of any sacred aspect, is something so course here that it has been reduced to staring at women’s breasts, teasing and intimidating and generally playing for the fool any woman who might happen to simply walk by. It’s very hard to handle.
I have my tall, gorgeous, twenty-three year old daughter with me as I’m traveling through India. She is an intrepid traveler, going places on her own I could only dream of being brave enough to go to but she is often brought to her edge by Indian men. And women. The men won’t let her be. There is always some man, young or old, who is outright staring at her, bumping her or harassing her. It’s sad and alarming. It makes travel here uncomfortable a lot of the time. I even get some of it myself, at my age. It has put us in deep wonder about women’s lives here.
Women in the villages and small towns, which is most women, won’t come out of their dark, smoky, hidden little kitchens if the men are around. They won’t look at you, acknowledge you or stick around if we two women come near. If the men are gone to the fields or away sitting talking with other men, which is what they all seem to be doing all of the time in the cities, all breaks open with the women. They come out – really OUT. It’s like night and day.
So many times while traveling we have had this same thing happen. The women are chatty, curious and aggressive – to the point of being scary sometimes – but only if their men are far away. We have been pinched, poked, prodded and cajoled. We have been asked to give up our clothing, jewelry, scarves, pens and anything else that appealed and looked like something they could tell a good story about later. Luckily, we all have laughed together a lot, too, during these encounters. You have to be able to laugh – a lot – at yourself and at the situation. It is the best policy by far.
But what does this mean for their intimate lives? And how, as women, do we understand and accept the fact that in EVERY family, whether villagers or city folk, there is NEVER more than one girl among the children? There are always three to four or more boys of varying ages but never more than one girl. She is often the oldest or second to oldest, too.
What this tells us is that Indian women, whether Hindu or Muslim, must decide how to let their girls go. They get to keep one, only one. Older is better as she’ll be of valuable help to the mother, but after SHE is born there must be now only boys. Can you even imagine what that must feel like? I can’t even fathom it. I’m the mother of three girls and no boys. When I say that, which I do often, I get a sad, poor me kind of face from everyone. I am defective they think. How is this possible, they are wondering.
Imagine killing your daughters. You get just one, remember. Do you give that first one you don’t get to keep to your powerful mother-in-law, who had to do the same with her ‘extra’ girls? Do you be brave and leave her outside, under a bush, away from your home a bit, so you won’t think about it? How can you not think about it? Ever. What about the next and the next? How many times does an Indian woman have to do this in her life? She has to live through nine months of a pregnancy then, not knowing if it is a girl or that wanted boy, go through birth just to have a fifty-percent chance of starting all over again, very soon, to try again for that boy. If there are an average of four boys in a family and one girl then she might have had to do it maybe four or five times in her life. Just don’t attend the new baby girl - leave her, nature will do the rest. Does that make the one girl that does get to survive thankful – is she burdened at a very young age with that thought?
It is all too much for me sometimes. I can’t fathom it. It is because of money – the dowry. It is a burden on families to have to come up with a big pay-off for the girl to get married. Sometimes, even after that, the family is haunted by their new in-laws and their daughter’s husband to give more – the first wasn’t enough. It can drive women to suicide or worst, murder on the part of the husband or his family.
I know that balance is within me. I know that everything is perfect, just the way it is. The Universe is perfect. And yet, I can’t balance this. It doesn’t compute. Sorry for my rants. I know it isn’t very ‘sexy’ but it is THE WAY in the land of the Kama Sutra. I am wondering about sex now. What is that like for Indian men and women?
Love,
Suzie

11/2/07

I'm in India at the temples in the town of Khajuraho

I will post very soon about India. I'm in Khajuraho, the small, isolated town in the interior of Northern India that has 21 temples left standing. These are the ones with the erotic sculptures that you've seen the pictures of. By January we'll have a very extensive collection of images on the Tantra.com site but for now I'll be writing a bit about my journeys here. Stay tuned. More coming.