Tantra: The Cult of Ecstasy is a large-sized paperback book originally published in Britain that covers some of the basics about Tantra, offering accurate information on this ancient, extensive, and often confusing topic. The book features full-color photographs from the Tantra sutras, connecting the reader with Tantric history. The author, Indra Sinha, focuses on the ancient paths of Tantra: the goddesses associated, sacred sites, mantras, and meditations, as well as explains the many misconceptions of Tantra as presented in the West. Sinha was a Sanskrit scholar at Cambridge and also wrote one of the popular modern translations of the infamous Kama Sutra.
The reason I like Tantra: The Cult of Ecstasy is because it touches on so many important topics of Tantra but in manageable pieces, perfectly combined with the photos and visually-friendly layout. The photographs are taken from various primary sources – the Tantra sutras, and incorporate various symbolic aspects that the ancients readily understood but may seem shocking or just weird to the modern viewer. Some of the iconography includes blood-covered goddesses, wriggling serpents, and a plethora of yoni (vulvas) and linga (penises). The book also features centuries-old Tantric drawings and paintings that depict maithuna (sexual union), so this book is “Not Safe For Work” and might be best for readers aged 21 or older.
This book touches on so many important topics in a thorough but easy-to-grasp manner that it makes a perfect beginner’s book to Tantra. I heartily recommend Tantra: The Cult of Ecstasy as a primer for Tantra: The Cult of the Feminine by Andre Van Lysebeth, Tantric Yoga and the Wisdom Goddesses by Dr. David Frawley, and Awakening Shakti: The Transformative Power of the Goddesses of Yoga by Sally Kempton. As the umbrella over all the yogas, including hatha and kundalini, Tantra is a shamanic science present in all forms of yogic practice, but the majority of Tantric gnosticism regarding sex is rarely presented at the average yoga studio while being hypersexualized in most New Age Tantric books and workshops.
Another book with a similar cover is Tools for Tantra by North Indian musician and writer Harish Johari, an excellent introduction to the yogic mandalas, Sanskrit mantras, and visual yantras used in Tantra. However, this book is a bit of a dryer read, and so Tantra: The Cult of Ecstasy is still a better opener to Tantra.
As one writer has said, a book without Tantra’s yantra is not really a book on Tantra. Therein lies the great problem with researching Tantra. It is difficult to sort through the numerous books available to ascertain which one will have the best, most reliable information. Finding a teacher versed in real Tantra is even more difficult. Tantra is a way of life, not an hour-long yoga session Monday-Wednesday-Friday, nor a collection of kinky sex positions. Tantra literally means a “tool for expansion” and is thought of as a “web”, a connected yet expanding consciousness, bridging the microcosm with the macrocosm and back again, cyclically.
The author, Sinha, writes on page 15, “The basis of all Tantrism is the worship of Sakti and Siva, the female and the male principles…. Without Sakti, there is no Siva, and no Siva without Sakti.” Sinha states emphatically in the previous paragraph, “Siva and Sakti cannot be separated.” (14-15) This very specific religious and spiritual foundation is probably the reason most Tantrism in the West has been secularized, stripping the “foreign” and non-Christian aspects to make Tantra and sexuality more palatable for sexually-repressed Americans. While I personally, do not subscribe to Sanatana Dharma (“Hinduism”), I appreciate the energies anthropomorphized as the balancing principals of Shakti or Shiva. Sinha has included the “foreign” bits and ancient spiritual practices for the Tantra newcomer.
The photographs of the ancient depictions of Tantra, her goddesses, and the sacred symbols can be jarring at first. The modern observer may find it odd to see detached penises and flying vulvas included in sacred sexuality. I will admit, that it does seem a bit “J. Alfred Prufrock’ed” at times. However, like all symbols, they are meant to jog the memory of the mind, the heart, and/or the subconscious self, not to be the whole story in and of itself.
Intriguing to some and perhaps shocking to others, Tantra: The Cult of Ecstasy helps diminish the hypersexualized celebrity of Tantra and add fact where fiction has reigned in the popular consciousness. Sinha perfectly synthesizes centuries of teachings into a helpful, 154-page book, including an impressive 9-page bibliography and index, that informs but does not overwhelm the senses. Anyone looking to dip her or his toe into the expansive waters of Tantra would do well to start with Sinha’s Tantra: The Cult of Ecstasy.
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The newest addition to my collection of toys is the Immortal Jade Glass G-Spot Dildo 10-Inch. While I really like the glass prostate toy I already have, the Jade caught my eye and has now won my heart… or at least, my prostate’s undying devotion.
My main problem with most toys (of any material) is the lack of a handle. Knowing my vagina will lengthen to about 5 inches at the absolute most, I thought the Jade would give me plenty of length to hold on to for ease of use.
Choosing to get the Jade was based on several factors. The toy is curved, so it would definitely stimulate my She Spot (what I call the G-Spot) as well as the rest of my female prostate. The end is bulbous so it covers more surface area than a fingertip but is still smaller than a penis head. The glass is super easy to clean and keep hygienic, and the Jade is also suitable for anal play. One major reason for getting the Jade is to finally achieve full female ejaculation.
The Jade is slightly heavier than I’d thought it would be, but using it does not wear out my wrist or my shoulder. Due to the curve, holding the toy at a specific angle is not necessary — it reaches the prostate on its own. The Jade is only 1.5 inches at its widest point — the bulbous balls at the end of the “shaft.” I couldn’t get the fist “ball” inside me, but feeling it at the opening of my vagina felt great.
The shaft has perpendicular glass ridges that seemed to stimulate my perineal sponge while the tip worked my prostate. Nothing can replace the feeling of being filled by a penis (or my new penis toy), but the Jade seems to hit several spots simultaneously.
The three times I’ve used the Jade have been deliciously wonderful experiences which I’ll write up soon in a DailyOJ post. I can say that the orgasms seemed to keep going, and the sounds I made were… unique. When the orgasms began, I didn’t throw my arms over my head as soon as I usually do, meaning I could keep using the Jade to stimulate more orgasms. For the after-O’s, I felt a strange “rippling” effect in my prostate that I don’t remember feeling before — ever. As the full-body orgasmic waves kept hitting all over, microcosmic waves rippled and rippled at my prostate. While I have not ejaculated in gushing form, I did did produce a lot of fluid during the session that flowed out continuously from the mid-way point onward.
For a prostate toy, the Jade is an excellent choice for many reasons. Frankly, I can’t think of any other prostate or glass toy I will need for a while. Perfect for the male prostate or female prostate, vaginal or anal play, the Immortal Jade Glass G-Spot 10-Inch is a great choice for your next toy.
After searching high and low for a new penis-shaped dildo, I had almost given up when I came across this guy on Amazon. For some reason, it has become very difficult to find a dildo that is exactly what I like — guess I’ll have to start making sex toys now.
I like good width, easy maintenance, and no vibration. Sounds easy. It isn’t.
The selling points listed for Adam’s PleasureSkin Cock are that it is very wide and feels like real skin. It boasts a width of 2″ (inches) across and 6.5″ insertable length, with realistic veining on the shaft and balls. It also features a suction cup for riding or use on the shower wall (or fridge door… bookcase… dining table leg…).
I perused several different dildos that were similar width and length and no vibration. In my current collection, I have a glass toy for prostate stim, my purple hard-silicone friend Sparkles, and another wide toy that is so heavy I can’t use it… so I’ll donate it to the local Catholic mission.
For my latest toy, I wanted a toy that was realistic in form and feel. I wanted him to be around 2″ wide, and most importantly, I wanted a toy that wasn’t too heavy — my wrist gets tired lugging a heavy toy around.
I read the reviews on Amazon:
- “This thing is HUGE.”
- “…amazing details… so realistic…”
- “…it was HEAVY… I have NEVER seen such a big penis.”
- “…it took a WHILE to get half way down, and it was DELICIOUS!”
- “It didn’t flop over it stood proudly… It is firm, and handles like a ‘real’ penis.”
- “It felt like I was having sex with another human. So realistic.”
- “…my orgasms are just as good if not better than the ones I get from my vibrator.”
The reviews were overwhelmingly positive, and even the naysayers were complaining about the very thing I was looking for in a toy (“too huge”). The two negative aspects they repeated were the chemical smell and the fact that this toy is not for the inexperienced. After reading all the reviews on Amazon, I decided to get the PleasureSkin Cock which comes in the delightful shade of Cinnamon.
I’m a member of Amazon Prime so the parcel arrived in two days. As I lifted it out of its discreet packaging, I was amazed at how life-like it looked. It must have been molded off an actual penis because the asymmetry was perfect (if this had been made by a human, the artist would have tried to make everything symmetrical). This toy is based on an uncut penis (which I did not know at the time of purchase but was a pleasant surprise), but neither the frenular delta nor the ridged band are overly pronounced (darn it).
The veining is awesome, and the testicles are in the up-and-tense position and include a particular favorite of mine — the testicular raphe. The head is conical, not bulbous, which I usually prefer, and I would have preferred the head to be bigger (or so I thought). I’d also prefer the corona to be more pronounced with a deeper sulcus, but I liked what I saw. My biggest fear came true — this thing is heavy, but with the suction cup option, I assumed I’d use it more passively than “hands on” (or so I thought). I’ve yet to ride on top of this guy, but that is on my to-do list very soon!
Feeling the “PleasureSkin,” I have to say that it did not feel like real skin to me, and yes, there is a chemical smell. My opinion of the PleasureSkin changed as I was using it because once it is lubed up, it feels amazingly realistic to the touch. The texture of this PleasureSkin toy is firm in the center but “gives” under touch the way real penises and flesh do. Holding the shaft in my hand and feeling how it gave slightly under the pressure has cured me of ever getting a hard silicone or plastic toy ever again. Just feeling him in my hand feels so good and lifelike, and yes, he really does stand at attention — no flopping over at all!
Cleaning the toy is easy with mild soap and warm water, and the smell is only noticeable if you hold it directly to your nose. There is no offensive odor wafting in the air during use. To avoid getting furries and lint on him, I keep this toy in plastic rather than velvet — though I do wash him (and all my toys) before and after every use.
Overall, I cannot recommend this “PleasureSkin Cock” enough!!! If you are experienced with sex toys, like ’em wide, and have a strong grip, absolutely nothing can beat Adam’s PleasureSkin Cock in Cinnamon. For anal use, be sure to use a condom… and when I get brave enough to try this thing for anal penetration, y’all will be the first to know.
The only thing better than this toy is an actual man (who also does laundry and vacuums). Seriously. Get this guy!
Stay tuned for my upcoming DailyOJ wherein I describe in detail how my first (and second and third) meeting with the PleasureSkin Cock went…
Now… what should I name him?