Llewellyn, November 2007
Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson have written a modern and comprehensive book that celebrates the sacredness of the body (and desire) within the Hindu Tantric tradition, one which aims to dispel remnants of our Puritan past that define many natural activities of our daily life, including sexual activity and desire, in negative terms.
Based upon the teachings of Dr. Jonn Mumford, their book is much more than an erotic sex manual-though, it is that, too! The authors explain the Tantric philosophy and its principles, demystify it for beginners, and offer authentic exercises and techniques that will help turn your every moment of pleasure into an opportunity to experience the divine.
paperback | ISBN: 9780738709000 | Publication Date: November 2007
"I cannot recommend The Essence of Tantric Sexuality highly enough to those readers who wish to deepen the connection with their beloved partners. This beautifully written, yet scholarly, book makes available the true meaning of Tantra, its origins and how the very words from Tantra's past have led to our present day thinking. The Essence of Tantric Sexuality dispels many of the popular myths about Tantra while offering readers a way to begin to incorporate some of the wisdom of the East into their daily lives."—Alice K Ladas, Co-author of The G Spot
"The authors write with uninhibited lucidity, erudition and humour. Everything is a gateway, an entry point to the potentiality of Life, for the Tantric. They have made a magnificent contribution to both the classical and contemporary literature of Tantra. This book is indeed a revelation of the essence of Tantric sexuality!"—Yogacharya Swami Ajnananda Saraswati (Paul Skye), author of Mastery of Stress
"Mark Michaels (Swami Umeshanand) and Patricia Johnson (Devi Veenanand), using the strong light of Dr. Jonn Mumford’s (Swami Anandakapila) 1976 Gnosticon lectures, illuminate deeply into the cave of ancient Tantra and share with us how vitally relevant Tantra is for today. Not shy with any area of Tantra, they guide us through Tantric thinking and practices, showing how ancient techniques are still vibrant and meaningful. With this work we are given passwords to access knowledge, understanding and power that were formerly available only to the selected few. The reader will find immediate and engaging access to the Tantric world of spirit and sexuality for men and women of all sexual orientations."—Bruce Anderson, author of Tantra for Gay Men
"At last! A book that presents authentic Hindu Tantra in a delightfully accessible format. The Essence of Tantric Sexuality is a must-read for everyone just beginning to explore Tantra and an invaluable, nuanced resource for more experienced practitioners. Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson have done a stunning job of placing Dr. Jonn Mumford's Gnosticon lectures in context between their ancient roots and their modern application. Most impressive is Michaels' and Johnson’s ability to separate-without prejudice or judgement--the essence of authentic Tantra from the many varieties of popular American neo-Tantra. This is a truly liberating book."—Barbara Carrellas, founder of Urban Tantra® and author of Urban Tantra, Luxurious Loving
"The two effortlessly model the tantric tradition that invokes the beloved as
an incarnation of the divine."—The Village Voice