What You Should Know About the Three Gunas of Nature

What You Should Know About the Three Gunas of Nature





Prakriti is the prime material energy of which all matter is composed. It is nature, the nature of the intelligence of the universe and how it functions. The primal matter or Prakriti has three innate qualities referred to as the Gunas. Gunas in Sanskrit mean a strand or rope. The Gunas are based on observed reality.


Did I lose you yet? I hope not. It is quite simple and yet these qualities can fit into many scenarios. All three Gunas live in all of us and the Universe. We can look at what Gunas are dominant in us and balance ourselves out with the others. According to the ancient teachings in the Bhagavad Gita, everything, on all levels of creation is made up of different permutations of the three Gunas. They are present in all matter, experience, life forms, and certainly present in the mind. All experience is said to be comprised of the three Gunas in an array of proportions.





The Three Energetic Qualities of the Universe or Gunas are:


Tamas: Veiling Power
A state of darkness, inaction, idleness, and ideas concerning the material world. Tamas arises from unawareness and misleads all us from spiritual truth. This Guna makes it difficult to grow spiritually and reach higher levels of consciousness. To balance a dominant Tamas Guna, a Yogi must avoid a sedentary lifestyle. Yoga asana practice should include more energizing postures and balancing asanas, as well as practicing a solid Vinyasa flow, rather than slow or holding postures. Pranayama practice (breathwork) can clear the Tamas Guna and meditation should be active by using Mantra. Use bolsters, straps and blocks to increase your productivity!





Rajas: Projecting Power
The Rajas Guna is passion, energy, and activity. Rajas Guna is the second, or middle, of the three qualities or Gunas of the universe. Rajas Guna is the quality of energy, movement, activity, ambition, action, and change. High Rajas Guna energy is useful for athletes and motivators or motivation. People who have too much Rajas Guna tend to be filled with too much energy that leads to anxiety, monkey mind, and aggressiveness or hyperactivity. To balance Raja Guna one must choose to do some calming activities and to implement a quiet practice like Yin Yoga that holds poses for longer periods. Forward folds and side bends are great for Raja Guna. Breathing exercises or Pranayama should include calming breathwork. Seated meditation is best for this Guna. Get yourself a good meditation cushion, bolster and pillow! Think about cool meditation music or guided meditation!





Sattva: Revealing Power 
The word means "light," "goodness" and "purity" in Sanskrit. Out of all three Gunas, Sattva is the pure one! It is the Guna that is the closest in nature to be in a pure state of mind-body health and joy. A Sattvic mind will not need material items to be happy. A person can be called “sattvic" if they have these predominant tendencies that are not Rajasic or Tamasic. This Guna is favorable for attaining Samadhi or Moksha. In this Guna, a person is likely to have found and practice purifying techniques. If you are already doing all it takes to practice. Get yourself a good cup of Matcha and continue!







For every personality at your work or home, you may see these qualities of over workers, slackers, and persons who skillfully balance their day. Perhaps through understanding the Gunas, you may find your method of balance and in doing so increase your awareness and productivity. Always keeping in mind that in evolution and full transformation none of these Gunas will appear present. Krishna says in The Bhagavad Gita that, "In enlightenment, a person is not under the sway of any of the Gunas and are unmoved by the harmony of sattva, the activity of rajas, or the delusion of tamas. They feel no aversion when these forces are active, nor do they crave for them when these forces subside"



Which one are you?
How will you balance your Gunas?

We would love to hear from you on this topic!




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Sat Nam ਸਤਿ ਨਾਮੁ

Soorya Kirti Kaur

The Yama Yoga Store




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