What comes to mind when you hear the words “kink” and “tantra?” If you’re like many folks, they seem contradictory. But according to Dawn Beck and Gerard Gatz, certified tantra educators I interviewed, they can blend as seamlessly as peanut butter and jelly.
For this Girl Boner blog post, sponsored by Karma Tantric Magazine, I thought I’d share some of their insights, plus a few fun ways to dip in to tantra and kink at the same time.
When I asked Dawn how she would define tantra for anyone who’s unfamiliar, she described it as “an energy system that connects sensuality with the rest of our beings.” Another definition, she said, is expansion through awareness.
“Tantra is about becoming aware of how energy moves in our bodies, how we can quiet our thinking minds, how we can connect more deeply to each of our chakras, our energy centers, starting with our root Chakra, our connection to Mother Earth, all the way up our bodies, through our bellies, through our hearts, inclusive of our sexual centers and connected with Spirit, with the Divine,” she added. “It’s about moving energy, feeling energy and really opening our hearts to more trust, more intimacy and more connection.”
Kink, Dawn said, is another story—namely because what one person finds kinky may not seem kinky at all to another, and vice versa. I loved how she and Gerard define kink:
“How we refer to kink is, how do we open our minds and our bodies and our energy centers? How do we invite our bodies and our minds and our spirits to enjoy something that is new, something that may be fraught of by ourselves or by our partners as just a little bit forbidden? Something that really ignites our energy centers, our bodies, our breath, our connection with ourselves and with another to invite our sexual centers to perk up a little bit—no pun intended, or the little bit—and to kind of become more enlightened?”
3 Ways to Combine Tantra and Kink for Sexy Fun
If you want to pair tantra and kink, however you define “kinky,” here are a few ideas:
1 Talk sexy while giving or receiving a tantric massage. If you love being called names, a humiliation kink, or have fantasized about your partner speaking to with a different tone of voice or accent, work it into a sexy, tantric massage—which is essentially an erotic massage that focuses on your most erogenous parts.
2 While practicing tantric touch or massages, work in sensation play by tracing an ice cube on your partner’s skin or dunking a toy in warm water before playing with it toward the end. Or have the receiving partner wear a blindfold during the tantric massage. When you limit one sense, you heighten the others.
3 Make a kink and tantra “WANT” list. Whether you’re in a long-term relationship or dating someone new, Gerard suggested that each of you make a list of 10 spicy things you’d like to try. Then swap lists and talk about the items, noticing if any match up. Toss out the items that you aren’t both into and keep the rest. Then when it’s time to play, pick one. You can also think up ways to blend particular fantasies in ways that mutually appeal.
Lastly, if you’re new to kink or tantra, or any novel sexual activity you try for that matter, keep lines of communication open. For added clarity, use leveled safe words, such as GREEN for “Yes, keep going,” YELLOW for “Please slow down,” and RED for “Stop immediately.” Focus on relaxed breathing, check in with other along the way and prioritize mutual safety, comfort and respect. All of this can bolster pleasure and connection.