I’m starting to notice that more and more people are getting curious about tantra, and there has been an increase in workshops and retreats held worldwide. I have previously written about what you can expect from a one day workshop and also posted an introduction to sacred sexuality video, which you can see by clicking on the links.
This year I had the privilege of going to a week-long tantra festival in Ibiza and I keep being asked by friends and strangers alike to share my experiences, so in this article this is exactly what I’m going to do, for those of you who are thinking of going to a similar event. This particular festival started in 2014 and runs annually. Many renowned tantra teachers join to give talks and workshops, as well as musicians, dancers and meditators.
Edit: I keep getting asked about the next festival, so here it is: Osho Festival of Tantra
Music & Dance, 18th Nov – 23rd Nov 2016, near Delhi, and there’s other events going on there after the festival, so you should stick around!
Skipping right to the end, overall it was a mind-blowing experience! I never knew just how beneficial it would be for me and I feel like a completely new person now. I let go of old beliefs and programs that I didn’t even realise were holding me back in life, and found a whole new community of friendly and loving people along the way. When I got back home I began to re-evaluate my life completely and make positive changes. People always go off searching to “find themselves”, well after that week I feel like I have finally done just that, or at least opened the right door!
Initially I was going to give you a day by day schedule, but there was just too much going on and every festival will be different, so instead I decided to show you the kind of experiences you may have whilst you’re at a similar event. But briefly the schedule was:
- A choice of 2 different classes – yoga or active Osho meditation
- Morning circle, find out the activities of that day and “family” sharing time
- Choice of 2 workshops
- Free time
- Choice of 2 workshops
- Concert or sound healing event, or something relaxing of the sort
- Either ecstatic dance, biodanza, any other kind of dance, costume party or anything else that’s fun.
- Skinny dipping in the sea…oops I meant sleep 😉
Here’s the intro video from the Ibiza festival:
Here are a bunch of things you may (or may not!) experience during a tantra festival:
P.S. These are not all personal experiences, but also a collection of things I saw or heard from other people.
- You may receive a wonderful massage and give one in return.
- You might find something about yourself that you didn’t know before, maybe something that you like in a partner, or some issue that you just realized you have.
- Perhaps you’ll get the chance to express your emotions and feelings in safe groups or individually, either through words or through actions.
- You may find yourself opening up to a whole new way of loving others around you, being in a place where everyone loves and accepts each other is amazing.
- You may find yourself surrendering into a beautiful embrace and fully allow yourself to relax, without feeling like you need to politely let go.
- You may also experience the more physical side and find yourself dancing topless in a threesome.
- You may get hit on by a freaky dude who you don’t want anything to do with, so you just namaste him and walk away.
- You may find yourself being attracted to people of the same sex as you, even if you’ve never thought about that before.
- Maybe you’ll find yourself standing alone feeling lonely.
- Maybe you’ll feel rejected.
- Or perhaps even freaked out to the point you need to leave the festival entirely (though I don’t think that actually happened at ours)
- Maybe you’ll share some sweet caresses with a beautiful partner who will devote all their attention to you at that moment.
- You may even find that you can share a special moment with someone who you didn’t expect, maybe someone you had no intention of getting to know.
- You may be topless or even completely naked in front of the entire festival crowd (if you so choose, of course)
- You might make out with several people who’s names you don’t even know in one day and everyone’s totally fine with it.
- You may find yourself in a room full of naked people of the same sex as you, caressing each other.
- Maybe you’ll even find yourself in an intense passionate moment with a man in an open marriage who’s wife is sitting next to you.
- You might see people sitting on top of each other (fully or partially clothed) screaming and rocking in ecstasy, with no shame of others watching.
- You might feel safe to do anything you want, even get naked if you so wish.
- You might feel jealous if someone you shared a moment with has gone with someone else.
- You may also get over that feeling and realize that you’re both free and there are no ties around real love.
- You may however also find your true love, someone who you can connect with in a safe environment and get to know on a deeper level.
- Maybe you’ll have some fun experimenting with sexual techniques in the love lounge (no penetration!) – this is a safe zone where you can relax and cuddle.
- Maybe you’ll connect with someone so deep you’ll want to get intimate in the private space of your room, and maybe there you’ll experience mind-blowing things you never even knew were possible.
- Perhaps you’ll catch a beautiful sunset on top of some amazing cliffs, whilst singing mantras as a whole group.
- Maybe you’ll catch a non-penetrative orgasm or two.
- Maybe your third eye or your heart chakra will open.
- Perhaps you will join an active Osho meditation or discourse.
- Perhaps you’ll begin to release old emotions, programs and feelings that no longer serve you.
- Maybe you’ll feel a deep connection to the universe and every living soul in this planet.
- Maybe you will feel your kundalini energy rising.
- Maybe you’ll cry.
- Maybe you’ll laugh (the facilitators can be very entertaining!)
- Maybe you’ll meditate and go deep within.
- Perhaps you’ll get super sweaty and have to hug other sweaty people. Group hugs!!
- Perhaps you’ll break up with the partner you originally came with.
- You may even find yourself thinking what the hell is going on here? But then think, ah whatever, I’m surrendering to whatever happens and have a blast.
- Maybe you will do a sacred ritual with someone and feel a crazy deep connection like you’ve known each other your entire lives, even though you just met.
- Or maybe you’ll get to the ritual and not connect with your partner at all and politely ask them to give you space, and they will be totally fine with it.
- Maybe you’ll have a “weird” experience or two, such as kundalini rising, visions, powerful meditations, or like in my case, my partner and I physically couldn’t separate our hands during a meditation, it’s like they were stuck together by magnets, it was so cool!
- You might get squished in a sweaty dancing love train, but by the end you’ll get used to people grinding up against you.
- You might feel like you want to gently touch someone on the arms/ legs etc as they’re sitting next to you, and that’s totally fine in this environment, everyone is very touchy feely, with the same and opposite sex.
- You might find that you can be completely yourself, no matter how crazy you are, because we are all a little crazy in our own ways 😉
- Perhaps you’ll smooch someone 50 years younger or older than you, or someone of the same sex, just because you appreciate their being.
- You may begin to appreciate your own body and being, loving every single part and not being afraid of exposing the areas that you don’t like.
- You might feel sexy and wanted.
- You might learn how to do a self massage and find that you can give yourself so much pleasure.
- Maybe you’ll finally realize that you are a perfect and complete being, and that you don’t need a partner to make you whole as true bliss comes from within.
- You’ll surely have some wonderful teachers who will guide you with practical workshops on the sacred art of touch, yoga, sensuality, sexuality, kundalini and many other topics.
- You might go skinny dipping in the pool or sea after a workshop, depending on where you are of course.
- You probably won’t get much sleep, so take naps at lunch time and stay close to the festival if you aren’t at the main hotel.
- Maybe you’ll have a few concerts with beautiful musicians / kirtan / gong baths.
- Ecstatic dance and biodanza are also a possibility.
- Dancing every single day, several times a day is definitely going to be on the schedule!
- If you can wake up early after all that dancing, then morning yoga will be a great place to start the day.
- Hugging everyone every couple of minutes is also a must 🙂
- As well as looking into everyone’s eyes for a long time.
- Oh and if you’re lucky, you might just stay for a sacred cacao ceremony!
What you should NOT expect from a tantra festival
- It’s not a huge orgy where everyone is having sex with everyone.
- In fact, there is no penetration or oral sex at any time…unless of course you want to experiment further in your own rooms.
- It doesn’t focus purely on the physical side and it’s not dodgy, even if you do find yourself standing topless in front of a stranger, it doesn’t feel dirty at all, I don’t really know how to explain it, you just need to experience it to see what I mean.
- You probably won’t be writing things down, at least in the festival I went to it was mostly practical, no history and very little theory was given as those who participate are assumed to know the basics of tantra.
- You don’t need a partner to go there, you can be single, married, in a relationship, in an open relationship – whatever.
- There is no rudeness, judgement or violent behaviour from the participants or teachers, it’s a totally safe space.
- You’re even recommended not to consume alcohol or take anything that may alter your experience.
- No one forces you to do anything, you are always free to do what you want or don’t want, and others will respect your decision.
- No phones or cameras are allowed there, apart from the official photographer who is very careful about what shots he takes (and you can always ask him to not photograph you), hence why this post doesn’t have any photos from the festival.
So there you have it, that’s all I can think of right now, there’s so much more but I can’t keep this post forever, but if you know me personally I’d be more than happy to expand on the experiences 🙂 This festival has been completely life-changing for me in so many ways. It honestly felt like a crash course to emotional healing and love. I’ve completely re-structured my brain and opened up to a whole new way of living, which has shown so much in my day-to-day life that even my grocer said I look like a totally new person!
I wrote this down because I know that people are curious, but my best advice would be to go there without any expectations whatsoever. Your experience may be totally different from mine. I had no clue what I was getting myself into when I booked that flight, but what actually happened was beyond my wildest imagination, on emotional, physical, mental and spiritual levels.