Tantric Healing: How Tantric Massage Can Help Heal Sexual Trauma
Among the many benefits of practicing tantric sex, tantric healing may be the most powerful—specifically when it comes to healing from sexual trauma. As a tantra teacher and a sexual assault survivor myself, I've personally experienced the healing effects of tantric massage and how tantra therapy can transform lives.
What is tantric healing?
Tantric healing, most often performed through tantric massage, is a form of hands-on bodywork that has been developed by modern tantrics in the last few decades. Unlike other forms of massage, this sacred practice incorporates the tantric essence of shakti, or energy. When skillfully incorporating this universal force into a massage, it can touch the deepest layers and aspects of a human being and be a profound instrument of spiritual and emotional healing. Most notably, tantric healing is believed to remove energetic blockages related to sexual trauma. Some health experts believe trauma can be stored in the body, and physical therapeutic modalities—like tantric massage—can help heal those emotional wounds by "releasing" that trauma.
Our sexual energy can be healing energy.
Energy is the building block of our universe. There are many types of energy, but one that is super potent—like the uranium in a nuclear reactor—is our sexual energy. Most people aren't aware of how to take their sexual energy beyond their genitals. There are many forms of tantric massage focused on the genitals that yield great sexual benefits, such as lingam massage (tantric massage for the penis), yoni massage (tantric massage for the vulva), and tantric masturbation.
But tantric massage used for tantric healing focuses on improving emotional and spiritual well-being. Through tantric massage, a person can cleanse and open up vital energetic gateways so there is an open channel for the energy to flow through. It also teaches the energy to start flowing upward. In this process, a skilled practitioner executing the massage can unlock the extraordinary healing benefits of a person's sexual energy. By using their own energy in a deliberate way, a therapist can arouse the energy of another person and teach it how to behave in a specific way to achieve a specific purpose.
Sexual healing through tantric massage.
This is how it happened for me.
I was 7 years old when my best friend's dad, a trusted fatherly figure for me at the time, lured me into his workshop with the promise of showing me something really cool and interesting. Instead, he raped me. I remember walking out of the workshop in a daze, and everything after that was a blur. The next memory I have was at my own home a few days later. I was scheduled to have a play date with my best friend, but I locked myself in my bathroom, frantically crying and begging my mom to cancel. I had no idea why I didn't want to go; I just knew I was upset.
My psyche repressed the explicit memories and left only faint flashbacks—just enough to keep me safe from future transgressions but not enough to overwhelm my fragile and infantile coping mechanisms. When I reached my 20s, the memories of sexual trauma came flooding back, first in the form of dreams. Then I began having lucid memories where it felt like I was there, in the flesh, experiencing the trauma for the first time. The last stage of recollection was similar to a state of hallucination, whereby my boyfriend at the time became my perpetrator while we were having sex. It was then that I realized it was time to take action.
My therapy was both extensive and intensive. I employed a broad range of treatments including hypnotherapy, acupuncture, cranial-sacral therapy, EMDR, recovered memory therapy (RMT), psychotherapy, mindfulness, meditation, forgiveness counseling, life coaching, and group therapy. By the time I reached my 30s, I felt I had exhaustively analyzed this life experience. No scar was left untouched. I can't say I ever truly encountered a pivotal moment when I felt as if the trauma had left my whole being.
Fast-forward five years: I found myself amid what I can only define as a spiritual crisis. I yearned not only to understand but to know, unequivocally, the deeper meaning of life. While I had casually ruminated on the idea of a "life's purpose," I was never overtaken by such an urgent calling as I was at that time. At the time, I owned a successful business doing what I loved, had a great group of family and friends, was enjoying single life, traveled often, and overall I was healthy and happy. In hindsight, however, there was a feeling that something was missing despite having all the life essentials. I felt stuck. I was reliving dilemmas over and over again, and I couldn't quite surpass patterns and paradigms. It was like I was on a treadmill, destination nowhere.
For the first time in my life, I found myself on my knees, praying to a higher power to bring me to the person, place, or thing that could end my futile quest. A few weeks later, I was in Argentina attending a tantra massage course under the direction of Somananda Tantra School. Skeptical as to how this course would provide clarity and a pathway forward, I arrived cautious yet optimistic.
But on this retreat, I had an epiphany regarding my sexual trauma. What I discovered was that this incident left an energetic scar and imprint on my aura, which are rarely healed by traditional therapies and therefore linger long after the emotional and mental aspects have been addressed in counseling. This explained why I was able to openly speak about my incident with no outward projection of an unhealed inner manifestation. Psychologically, I had unearthed the negative seed—but the energetic embryo was still very much alive and governing my life.
Healing from the inside out.
Everyone has blockages. They can be physical, emotional, mental, sexual, or psychosomatic in nature, and the root cause can vary from person to person. They can come from everyday repetitive habits and experiences or from a painful memory or event that gets compounded over the years. In my case, my blockages were a result of my early trauma and many sexual experiences that followed as a consequence.
Through the practice of tantric healing, I was freed from the clutches of the past when the imprint was harmoniously released in a systematic way. It was replaced by an unimaginable mental ease, a renewed hope for a bright future, and a place and a space for my true self to emerge. Today the memory of my sexual trauma is still very much with me. However, it is one I can broach with detachment and compassion. It is simply a single slide in my photo reel of life, but it no longer dictates my reality.
Tantric healing can be a life-changing experience, especially for sexual assault survivors. It can feel like a physical release of that trauma so that your body can finally feel free of that memory.
Tiffany Tanner is a tantra teacher and massage therapist in Phoenix, Arizona. She teaches tantra massage, yoga, and meditation at the Somananda Tantra School. She previously worked as a certified Pilates teacher and anatomy specialist with a focus on biomechanical re-education and the alleviation of chronic pain naturally before becoming a tantra massage therapist, leading international retreats and teaching tantra to couples.