Episode: 94

What is Tantra? A beginner's guide with Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan

Tantra as a subject has been on my mind for a while for the podcast. It took me a while to find a guest on this topic because it's very important for me to find the perfect person to talk to it as there's so much misinformation out there about Tantra. Thankfully, I’ve found Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan who's the perfect person for this topic.

Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan is a cardiologist and a professor of medicine, a wife, and a mother. She's published more than a hundred papers in peer-reviewed journals and several book chapters and serves on several national and international committees and organizations in the field of cardiology.

But for this episode, we're going to highlight the other side of her life. Dr. Kavitha is a Śrīvidyā initiate and disciple of Śri Chaitanyananda Nātha Saraswatī (Haran Aiya), pīṭhādhipati and founder of the Rājarājeśvarī Pīṭham in Rush, NY. In this conversation, we break down tantra for beginners, its relation to yoga, and its practices.

We also cover some of the misconceptions around tantra, particularly, as you probably know in the Western world, when we say tantra, tantric sex, and sensual pleasure immediately come to mind. By the end of our conversation, Dr. Kavitha gives recommendations for those who want to start practicing tantra.

I'm not a tantra expert and I don't really know much about it so I hope you learn a lot from this conversation as I did!

Tantra Episode Highlights:

  • What does the word tantra mean?
  • What is tantra?
  • Is tantra related to yoga?
  • Practices under tantra
  • Misconceptions around tantra in popular yoga
  • What would qualify as authentic desire?
  • Kavitha's recommendation on getting started with tantra

Resources and Links Mentioned:


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Featured Guests

Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan

Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan is a Cardiologist and Professor of Medicine, a wife, and a mother. She has published more than a hundred papers in peer-reviewed journals and several book chapters, and serves on several national and international committees and organizations in the field of cardiology.

She is a Śrīvidyā initiate and disciple of Śri Chaitanyananda Nātha Saraswatī (Haran Aiya), pīṭhādhipati and founder of the Rājarājeśvarī Pīṭham in Rush, NY.

She is the author of Shakti Rising (Nonduality Press, 2017), which won the Nautilus Gold Award for Best Books of 2017, The Heart of Wellness (Sfaim Press, 2020), Glorious Alchemy: Living the Lalitā Sahasranāma (New Sarum Press, UK, 2020), and Fractals of Reality: Living the Śrīcakra (Sfaim Press, 2022).


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