(Last Updated on : 15/07/2011)
is a Tantric practice that not only denotes 'left hand worship' but also where the woman or the vama enters the lata-sadhana. In Vamachara Vama-devi is worshipped. In Vamachara it is advised to directly destroy the Pravritti and to cultivate the path of Nivritti. Vamachara tradition or the left handed tradition has been divided into two traditions; the 'symbolic tradition' and the 'literal tradition.'
Symbolic Tradition in Vamachara
Symbolic tradition takes into account the five forbidden things such as, Maithuna, Mada, Mamsa, Matsya and Mudra as its symbols. The union of Lord Shiva
also considered as the cosmic male and female are the forces within the psyche. The inner formulation of the left handed path or the Vamachara path is always in harmony with the right handed path or the Dakshinachara
. All religions contain symbolic approaches which are common in yogic traditions. The yogic tradition has never been merely attached to words, names or forms. The usage of symbolic utterances has been a common practice in yogic teachings which provides and provokes deeper inquiry within the mind.
Literal Tradition in Vamachara
Left handed tantra has a tradition of using the five forbidden things like the Maithuna, Mada, Mamsa, Matsya and Mudra as a part of its sacred rituals. The usage of these forbidden things is advocated as a preliminary practice for the people who intend to transcend body consciousness and make it as their ultimate goal. Certain intermediary steps are requires to be followed as surpassing beyond the senses is a tough goal. This is the main reason that such practices are performed in traditional Tantra. It is always difficult to renounce one's attachments from the materialistic world. Such attachments lead to the continuous process of the cycle of birth and rebirth which is also constantly reinforced by the environment. It can be considered as an organic process of growth for the soul. According to tantrists the easiest way to transcend ones desires is to denote it as sacred and offer it to God.
The literal tradition declares that the yogic traditions have three gunas
or qualities which keep the soul connected. Attachment to Tamas which is a state of darkness and dullness leads to attachment to sex and intoxicants. Attachment with Rajas which is a state of activity and turbulence lead to ones attachment with the spiritual practices and other divine matters. Finally with attachment to Sattva which means purity keeps one attached to the idea of being holy and pure. Those attached to Sattva are not actually free, instead they re trapped in the appearance of being spiritual people. Thus in such cases the tantrist teachers recommend their disciples towards the Rajasic and Tamasic path.