The three categories of human behaviour
(also called modes, attitudes or
gunas )
These are:
Satva, Rajas
and Tamas, meaning roughly,
divine, dynamic and dark (or dull).
In reality no man or woman has any one of
these
gunas in an exclusive manner.
It is always a mixture of the three.
These three
gunas are the three strands which constitute the Prakriti.
Prakriti
means Nature, in general
but actually stands for it in its broadest sense encompassing
the entire universe of matter and material,
in fact anything which is inert.


They are actually Nature's concomitant and indispensable strands.
Satva is that of equilibrium and serenity.
Rajas is that of dynamism and kinesis.
Tamas is that of ignorance and inertia.
These three are inextricably interwoven in all forms of
cosmic existence and phenomenon
The imperishable resident of the body, namely the jiva or the individual soul is by itself free but what binds it to the transmigratory cycle of births and deaths is the Prakriti through the three gunas. Of these,
the rajo-guna
is made up of desire,
attraction, repulsion,
likes and dislikes, and
attachment to objects
of desire. It binds man by
repeatedly involving him
in the dynamics of work.
Dynamism broadly
includes excitement,
reaction to action,
a constant distraction
and so an antithesis
to peace and calm.
It attaches one to action.
the tamo-guna
is born out of ignorance
and deludes man
from his real nature.
It binds by the dark
qualities of
indolence, sleep
and negligence.
It attaches one to
error and inaction.
the satva-guna
because of its purity of quality
is the cause of
light and illumination.
It binds man, however,
by creating an attachment
to knowledge, happiness
and bliss.
Copyright V. Krishnamurthy
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February 9, 1999
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