Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Sattwa, Rajas and Tamas

Every human is supposed to be composed of Sattwa, Rajas and Tamas.

Sattwa (christened Illumination) is composed of compassion, patience, poise, serenity, forgiveness, transparency, simplicity, purity, selflessness, humility, gratitude etc.

Rajas (Dynamism) would encompass anger, fluctuating moods, vindictiveness, arrogance, pride, vanity, greed, jealousy, envy, conceit etc.

Tamas (Intertia or darkness) is about confusion, delusion, procrastination, laziness, indolence, lethargy.

Now, I’d say if it were to be put in a linear function

Me = A(s) + B(r) + C(t)

What varies across time and space is the value of the coefficients of each of these components. ‘Me’ is a dependent variable, on the values of the s,r,t and the varying coefficients in the functions. It’s not difficult to understand the variation across people and the evolution of the same person over time. However, it is also claimed that elements of all three characteristics must be present, for a healthy living. Think you could really do without all the lethargy and procrastination? Maybe not. It might lead you into insomnia!

About the Rajas which seems to be a whole lot of supposedly negative emotions, there is a further classification – you could be the illumined dynamite (sattwa guiding rajas) or the blind rajas which would be a mad race to nowhere. Rajas, without the headlight given by sattwa, can’t look at the big picture by it’s very nature and is liable to cause damage by speed of action.

Where do I see myself? For me, perhaps the equation is rather balanced. I can’t claim to have a dominant ‘illumination’ given my lazy habits in general. And I needn’t elaborate about the attitude anyway. Moving towards idealism, I think I could do with a bit less of lethargy and the sattwa taking a slight bit more control of the dynamism to illuminate it and light the bulb of sense in my head!


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