Important Figures in Tantric History
There have been many scholars and proponents of Tantra in the Western world. Some of the more pivotal people in the Western movement include:
Sir John Woodroffe
Considered by some to be the founding father of Western Tantric study, Woodroffe was the first Western scholar to seriously look at Tantra. He wrote about the Tantra — under the pseudonym Arthur Avalon — as an ethical philosophy and defended it against its critics. His most famous work is The Serpent Power: The Secrets of Tantric and Shaktic Yoga.
Among the forefathers of the current modern Tantric movement is Charles Muir, who calls himself “the grandfather of the modern Tantra movement in the United States.” He created the “Tantra: The Art of Conscious Loving” format of Tantric instruction (based on a book of the same name, which he cowrote with his wife) in 1980 and also developed the art of “sacred spot massage” around the same time.
Charles Muir may consider himself modern Tantra's grandpa, but Margot Anand has frequently been called the “mother of the modern Tantra movement.” Anand, author of many sex books including The Art of Sexual Ecstasy, is a highly regarded Tantra teacher and founder of SkyDancing Tantra, a broad group of philosophies and beliefs initially taught by Anand personally and now shared with people worldwide via her Skydancing Institute, books, DVDs, and online resources. She spent many years studying under some of the world's most revered gurus of Buddhist and Hindu Tantra.
Deepak Chopra, author of numerous books, is one of the most well known healers, spiritual leaders, and medical advisors in the United States (and perhaps the world). He is mainly associated with New Age concepts of self-awareness, alternative medicine, and the mind-body connection. Given that, it doesn't seem so surprising that he is also a vocal supporter of Tantric philosophies. He has recommended Tantra as a good way to explore and realize your relationship with nature and the universe.