The Kama Sutra – Sanskrit:is an ancient Indian Hindi text widely considered to be the standard work on human sexual behavior in Sanskrit literature written by Vātsyāyana. A portion of the work consists of practical advice on sexual intercourse. It is largely in prose, with many inserted anustubh poetry verses. “Kāma” which is one of the three goals of Hindu life, means sensual or sexual pleasure, and “sūtra” literally means a thread or line that holds things together, and more metaphorically refers to an aphorism (or line, rule, formula), or a collection of such aphorisms in the form of a manual. Contrary to popular perception, especially in the western world, Kama sutra is not just an exclusive sex manual; it presents itself as a guide to a virtuous and gracious living that discusses the nature of love, family life and other aspects pertaining to pleasure oriented faculties of human life.
The Kama Sutra is the oldest and most notable of a group of texts known generically as Kama Shastra (Sanskrit: Kāma Śāstra). Traditionally, the first transmission of Kama Shastra or “Discipline of Kama” is attributed to Nandi the sacred bull, Shiva’s doorkeeper, who was moved to sacred utterance by overhearing the lovemaking of the god and his wife Parvati and later recorded his utterances for the benefit of mankind.
Pleasure and spirituality
A Sexual Pose from Mukteswar Temple in Bhubaneswar, Orissa
Some Indian philosophies follow the “four main goals of life”,known as thepurusharthas:
Dharma: Virtuous living.
Artha: Material prosperity.
Kama: Aesthetic and erotic pleasure.
Dharma, Artha and Kama are aims of everyday life, while Moksha is release from the cycle of death and rebirth.
Of the first three, virtue is the highest goal, a secure life the second and pleasure the least important. When motives conflict, the higher ideal is to be followed. Thus, in making money virtue must not be compromised, but earning a living should take precedence over pleasure, but there are exceptions.
In childhood, Vātsyāyana says, a person should learn how to make a living; youth is the time for pleasure, and as years pass one should concentrate on living virtuously and hope to escape the cycle of rebirth. The Kama Sutra acknowledges that the senses can be dangerous: ‘Just as a horse in full gallop, blinded by the energy of his own speed, pays no attention to any post or hole or ditch on the path, so two lovers, blinded by passion, in the friction of sexual battle, are caught up in their fierce energy and pay no attention to danger’.
Many in the Western world wrongly consider the Kama Sutra to be a manual for tantric sex. While sexual practices do exist within the very wide tradition of Hindu Tantra, the Kama Sutra is not a Tantric text, and does not touch upon any of the sexual rites associated with some forms of Tantric practice.
Written almost two millennia ago, it seems the Kama Sutra has made its way to popular culture and couples are aching to use it to enhance their bedroom antics. And although the sexual positions themselves are only a minute part of the book, I’m sure you’re interested in everything that comes before them.
The Kama Sutra makes it clear that you should make it a point to pay attention to every inch of your lover’s body. Don’t leave anything out and don’t place so much importance on the actual sex itself.
The act of lovemaking in its entirety should be thoroughly enjoyed. Be totally aware of your senses; smell, taste, touch, hear, and see her. And of course, she will do the same.
But before you begin, you have to prepare for such a vivid experience by understanding yourself (and her for that matter).
indulge in your experiences
Sex is a remarkable experience and you can keep it memorable by constantly delving into new and diverse experiences. This concludes our Kama Sutra experience. I hope you enjoy yourself, or are about to.