by Shiva Rea

This is my favorite text of all time. I came across the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra when I was 14 and it was my initiation into Yoga. My first love, this teaching has given me entryway into the vast wisdom at the heart of tantra. I feel I have a home base now.

What is so extraordinary about the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra is that it is a description of the vibratory intelligence guiding us at every moment of our lives. This text is loving – a rare thing in the universe of yoga texts. The teaching emerges from the lovemaking of the Goddess and the God within our hearts. It has been whispered, from heart to heart, for millennia. The words are subtle nadis, channels for the flow of consciousness and wisdom.

This is the revealed tantra. If you are reading these words, the divinity in your heart is wanting to awaken you into the interconnected field we are all vibrating with. Be prepared to not be the same person that you were before you began reading. This book is absolutely magical. One line, or just the pairing of some of the words, can change your relationships, activate an awakening. Reading one of these sutras is enough to change a life. I have seen this happen again and again in myself and in my teaching. People who find this text are enlightened by it.

The teaching is practical – here are 112 ways of yoga meditation. Inside any one of these, you can experience the highest yogic insights, through your own direct experience. These practices are at the heart of yoga.
Why did we come here? Why did we come to yoga and meditation? We long for the real awakening, the direct experience. These sutras are like hiking to a hidden waterfall and standing naked on the edge, about to plunge into a pool of cleansing cool water. When you find a sutra that hits you and sets you vibrating, you are in the pool.

Lorin’s translation of the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra is refreshingly intimate, sensual, fierce, and immediately effective. As you are reading a sutra, even if you are not doing a formal practice, your body is being affected, even from the first reading. The outer mind is reflected back to its sacred source.

As you hold these sutras, realize the sutras are also holding you, for they speak of the energies of love, the currents of living, juicy electricity flowing through your body even now. The embrace of the sutras is that of coming home.

This text glows with an expansive intimacy in the conversation between two lovers, Bhairava and Devi. It releases a naturalness of being. This is a very different feeling than one gets from the Upanishads, the Yoga Sutras, or the Bhagavad-Gita; when I read those texts I do not have the same somatic relaxation into my sacred body. This relaxation is so essential for Westerners. When we get the feeling of vertical ascension, it tends to tighten us up. We tighten up! We just do. Western yoga practitioners need an entryway into the quantum vibratory body, one that retains the magical spontaneity that is there in one’s original experience of finding such a work.

This text specifically releases us, through these practical methods, from the limitations of the way we think of space, of the material world, the body, senses and sexuality, and transforms it all into a living, flowing, vibrational consciousness. This is what the sages and yogis are saying – we are living in an incredibly spacious field of vibrational intelligence known as spanda. I want this book to be on the bookshelf of every lover of yoga, next to the Yoga Sutras and the Upanishads.

Yoga is a living tradition. The methods sung of in this book are ways of awakening to the pulsating current of wisdom vibrating in your body right now. As you awaken, you are participating in an evolution, a revolution. Allow your old notions to be challenged, those conditioned constructs of who you are and what spiritual practice is. Be prepared to wake up inside a radical place of natural innate wisdom. There is a wild gaze here that will ignite you and at the same time a tender caress that will relax you and dissolve a lifetime of tension.

Lorin is on the front lines as a meditation teacher, bringing over into the Western world the deepest teachings of Tantra, giving them voice to sing out clearly.

– Shiva Rea
December 2008, Malibu