Tantra Yoga–The Best of Both Worlds

Via Chanti Tacoronte-Perez
on Oct 29, 2011
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Chapter 2: Two Kinds of Fulfillment 
Rod Stryker’s Four Desire (4D) Virtual Book Club

The other day I looked out my kitchen window and the view was absolutely stunning. After moving across the world, I finally felt I had arrived.

As I started writing this article and reflecting on the two kinds of fulfillment, I began to question that feeling. Did the feeling come from the attainment of the desire, was it just a nice day, or had something changed inside of me?

The two kinds of fulfillment that chapter two discusses helped me to understand this question I was asking myself.

1. Fulfillment that comes from the attainment of something; material or nonmaterial, substantial like a car or intangible like a particular emotion you long to feel.
2. Fulfillment that comes from within, that is inherently present; it is not inaccessible nor is it in distant places [it] appears to be the experience of bliss.

Why did I want my fulfillment to come from #2, the more “blissful” one?

And as some of us often do, we look at life for answers, and we have more questions. If you kept reading past the description of fulfillment as separate (which I didn’t at first) there is another option: accepting ourselves as human and part of this reality, right now. Most of us really do live in this world even if at times we want to escape it. Wanting to have something, whether it be recognition that you made the right move, or the feeling that you are connected to a greater, divine source doesn’t have to be on separate terms.

The best of both worlds, is a truly tantric approach; “Tantrics are not looking for liberation from the world but enlightenment in the world. To maintain an awareness of the divine reality while fulfilling one’s responsibility in the world.” This quote comes from Rod Stryker’s ParaYoga Teachers Manual and it’s essence is what in sanskrit is called pravritti margrga. We don’t have to choose to live in the world or to try to escape it and suppress our desires. Instead, we learn which of our honest desires are going to launch us toward what will truly bring joy and contentment to our lives. I can now look out my window and feel accomplished; I have made the right move. Seeing the beauty of this external world is connecting with that divinity within.

What are some examples of the two kinds of fulfillment in your life?



About Chanti Tacoronte-Perez

As a traveler and painter Chanti has grounded her roots in the path of yoga wherever she has landed. Chanti began practicing Yoga during her first year in college & continued when she left for Hampshire College to complete her BA in Painting/Fine Arts and Special Education. From 2001-2004 she lived and worked in Havana, Cuba as the Hampshire College Cuba Program Coordinator where she studied Iyengar Yoga. Chanti has been studying and teaching yoga in the Tantric Hatha Linage since 2005 with her teacher Rod Stryker, founder of Para Yoga. He has taught her that everyone has the ability to know their destination and find that road to walk on. She has currently completed the Para Yoga Certification (level I) & her Restorative Yoga training with Judith Handson Lasater. Her study of Sacred Art and Yantra Painting merge her love of Yoga with her passion for painting and education. http://www.ohanashakti.com


20 Responses to “Tantra Yoga–The Best of Both Worlds”

  1. Tanya Lee Markul says:

    Loved this – great question!

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  2. yogiclarebear says:

    Thanks for the question Chanti. This is a bit challenging, I could truly list so many material things that I've wanted and received. I feel recently I have had some fulfillment in a "concept" that I have been struggling with for a very long time: surrender. I still struggle greatly, but I have been blessed with a huge leap, regarding. I feel like the fulfillment of #2 for me might occur when I recognize that the fulfillment of "things" (#1) is a direct grace of God; like there is a peace and maybe bliss in knowing that I am taken care of in the scope of #1.

  3. missmiapark says:

    wow, what a great comment. thanks for this.

  4. sueneufeld says:

    Great question to ponder Chanti.
    I can answer #2 by thinking of my early morning meditation routine. My fulfilled morning includes some (or lots of) chanting (from Living Tantra series Fire ceremonies), Sanskrit writing of meaningful verses, and then my meditation practice. There are days this brings me to a state of Sri (beauty and resplendence) , a feeling a total connection and pure joy and yes, bliss. From that place , #1 Fulfillment is no longer as meaningful. . Yes, I still have goals and needs, but having/ not having, getting/not getting doesn't carry the same importance. If I can connect to that feeling of vibrant connection, #2 far outshines #1.
    And yes, Mia, I agree – I too can experience #2 Fulfillment teaching yoga or meditation that flys by, or meeting privately with a student to help them uncover their DDD (Deepest Driving Desire). And in a perfect world, that feeling carries moment by moment into daily life.

  5. Chanti says:

    Thanks yogiclearbear this book challenges us in every single way possible. I don't think one day goes by that 4D doesn't influence me. Love your comment!

  6. Chanti says:

    Thanks for sharing sue, sounds so blissful. I think among us teachers, i can't agree more with mia and sue…teaching being in that present, is really such an amazing place to be!

  7. HeatherR says:

    Fulfillment #2 comes when I see someone "get it". Watching joy beam from their face is as exciting for me as any of my own desires. Sometimes that happens teaching Yoga, sometimes in a conversation, sometimes it happens teaching climbing or just helping my son with his homework or carving Halloween pumpkins. In those moments I feel connected and see the beauty in all things even if it is a challenging time. Fulfillment in the form of #1, always seems a little tinged with, now what. The completion of one goal already seeds the feeling of emptiness. When I was a climber and we would try to send a route, spending days, weeks, months on it trying to do it without falling. Suddenly that would happen. There was happiness and within moments it was followed with what route is next? and a little disappointment, discomfort that now it begins again.

  8. Did anyone know that Rod is featured on The Poetry of Yoga website http://thepoetryofyoga.com/.

    I'm going to be at Kripalu on 11-11-11 for the release of Poetry of Yoga. If any Elephant writers and readers could manage to be there, I would love to meet you all. Please let me know you'll be there. http://bit.ly/sLAUQP .

    Bob W. Editor
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  9. Chanti says:

    Hi Heather,
    I love the awareness this group has!!! I hear you heather, when one goal is done, what is next, always comes up. I think it is an interesting place to be maybe even just finding the contentment between the routes.
    Thanks again for sharing

  10. Chanti says:

    Thanks bob,
    wish i was there, will be there in spirit and starting the year long meditation along with HI members.
    thanks for this link!

  11. ARCreated says:

    cool I'm not behind because I was already ahead LOL
    1. fulfillment of accomplishment — moved 🙂 got a new job 🙂 have fulfilled my personal promise to meditate everyday and have stuck with it for a month now!
    2. This has been happening more and more (probably as a result of fulfilling my meditation promise) this sense that it's all ok 😉 I like that. a lot!

  12. Chanti says:

    Whoo! ARCreated, they do influence each other don't they….Today I was talking with a group of super yogis and had the idea that these fulfillments (and desires) have levels, it's nice to accept the one we are on right now. Thanks again for keeping up;)

  13. Paula says:

    I like this a lot… I had seen them both as separate forms of fulfillment until now and I see how they are so connected and really one (isn't everything!) A good example for me is eating mindfully. If I eat on automatic pilot as I often do the food is not so tasty (sometimes I can not even notice that it is finished!) and I am always left with a sense of wanting more. The times I am able to stop, relax my body, and tune into the sensations and feelings of the food, the textures, the smells, even the anxiousness behind wanting to go faster, I enjoy the experience and the food so much more. I am left with a feeling of bliss, of completeness, of acceptance of the situation no matter what came up. I will focus on these two kinds of fulfillments more often, it is neat so see how they come together. Love, Namaste

  14. garuda65 says:

    I find that with number one, I'm pretty easily fulfilled. I don't need a lot of stuff. I do WANT a lot of stuff (I live in a consumer society after all) but generally speaking I'm not deeply desirous of "things". I'm actually in a pretty serious debt downpayment mode and that right there is more of my material attainment goal. That said, with winter arriving I indulged and bought myself some thermal underwear and a couple of vests. Nothing huge in the big scope of things but for me, I'm so happy to have warm things! Begin cold sucks. 🙂

    As for number two, I notice more and more my gratitude of what I already have. I live in the Seattle area and yesterday there was a tremendous sunrise over Mt. Rainier. I simply had to sit in awe of this vision and was able to connect to the inherent blissfulness of the moment(s). Now if I could only live in that all-encompassing graciousness all the time. That's the work!

    Thanks for providing this place for us to externally contemplate these concepts! I'm really enjoying it!

  15. Chanti says:

    I love this! Eating is such a great way to view and experience these fulfillments!

  16. Chanti says:

    Thanks so much for contributing! Being warm = Artha, the means for fulfilling your Dharma….I couldn't agree more!

  17. Jayasri says:

    What struck me the most from this chapter is that it is not necessary to delay seeking Heaven by waiting for it to come in the afterlife, but to seek Heaven (true happiness) in the here and now. And, that access to shakti makes us more capable of doing that. (I find that such a refreshing change from the usual Christian view of Heaven – to put up with suffering here and now (as if this life was meaningless and blotto), in order to benefit in the afterlife.)

    As regards to desires in this life, I particularly liked the quote from the Mahanirvana Tantra that Desire is not to be let loose without a bridle. The bridle in this case is our divine source of guidance. This is how we can distinguish that which is helpful and creative in our desires from that which is deranging.