Reviewed by Susannah Indigo
Haven't you always wanted to meet, or even own, an "enlightened vagina?" How about getting intimate with the "red passion that flows hotly through a woman's red blood?" Or maybe stoke up on some Goddess energy during sex? And there can't be anyone alive who doesn't want to meet a woman who "embraces the lush physicality of a totally uninhibited sexual orgasm!"
This is definitely not your father's tantra -- this is "red tantra," not the male-focused "white tantra," which the author, David Ramsdale, notes was "designed by monks for monks." Red Hot Tantra presents an alternative to the classic image of tantra, a more natural feminine form, with playful, sensual, total let-go sex that more people can relate to and enjoy in their everyday lives, while still learning new ways to reach a little higher in the eternal pursuit of sexual bliss. Ramsdale (who, we should note, performed a twenty-minute male-energy orgasm live on the Playboy Channel!) even goes so far as to suggest that the original "white tantra" was developed by men because they could not sexually compete with women.
Red Hot Tantra is not just full of theory about all those amazing stairways to heaven -- it also contains twenty-two excellent erotic stories, one to go with each tantra theory, or "experience." The stories are written by Cynthia W. Gentry, and they are all interesting, sexy tales of ordinary couples (and individuals alone) working their way through the challenges of loving and lusting and holding onto intimacy in
our hyper-busy world.
This is such a rich book -- easily one of the best erotic books I've read in a long time -- it's full of everything Clean Sheets readers love: blindfolds, candles, surrender, bubble baths, incense, cheating partners, lost orgasms, finding your truth through fantasy meditation, good music, people getting focused and having hot sex, and of course the always longed-for "orgasmic supernova."
In the story "Breath of Fire," Gentry writes about a busy two-career couple with kids who have lost the time and energy for good
sex, so some friends who are thought of in the married world as "sex-maniacs" recommend they go see the tantric sex therapist who had helped them. They're hesitant at first, in fact, the husband is a bit terrified, but by the end of the story they are laughing and falling in love again and working hard to sneak away from their toddler so that they can do things like breathe together:
We start trying out a few things that Benjamin told us were more advanced. If someone had told me a week ago that I'd be sitting on my husband's lap with his penis deep inside me and our foreheads pressed together as we hummed away, I would have asked them what they were smoking. Now I'd tell them that I'd found something better than any drug.
After the story, Ramsdale explains the central concept of the "fire breath" in detail, including the expected result:
What happens during the fire breath break? You build up and intensify your sexual energy charge, both within your body and with your partner. You also balance and harmonize your sexual energy charge. Charging up with energy is the yang side of the Fire Breath. Balance energy is its yin function. Somehow, it manages to do both at the same time. The outcome is delightful. The woman has more energy for her orgasms and is able to achieve states of greater whole-body pleasure. The man finds that his energy is balanced and calm, yet firm and strong. He experiences significant gains in his endurance, his so-called "staying power."
Divided into six sections -- tantric meditation, tantric healing, tantric touching, tantric seeing, tantric hearing, and tantric breathing -- along with a complete index of tantra resources, Red Hot Tantra is an invaluable bible for anyone who believes that the spirit of adventure is the highest aphrodisiac. The unusual combination of adventure with soulful discovery, all of it treated as a learning experience without pressure, may be the ultimate formula for what so many women, and men, truly want. I can only imagine what a better world it would be if we could magically replace every Viagra/Cialis commercial with a sixty-second spot for red tantric exploration, hyping the idea that ecstatic sexual surrender can be found right inside of you, for free.
Because, as Ramsdale writes in the closing of Red Hot Tantra: In the essence of the orgasm is the answer to all questions, for in that, all questions end. Silence, infinity, light, love, bliss, peace, even if only briefly, reign absolutely.