“Our world thrives on dualities, our systems depend upon it, and participating in separation has become so normalized that it feels as natural as breathing.
How can we create balance within our selves? We change the system by changing the people who keep it alive, and that change begins with ourselves.
We contain within us the same fundamental forces that are found in nature: stability (tamas), energy (rajas), and harmony or basic goodness (sattva). These are called gunas in Sanskrit.
These three intertwine, in various ways, to create everything (visible and invisible) in the universe and within ourselves as well. All of this weaving together happens without us being conscious of it, but we can learn to pay attention to their individual characteristics so we can figure out how they work and how we can work with them.
The Gunas in Nature and Within
A sattvic world is one of abundance, beauty, order, and balance.
To achieve sattva, things need to get moving, and rajas is the guna that makes that happen.
Rajas governs the beginning of the life cycle, brings birth and growth. It’s what causes a seed to grow into a plant and the plant to flower.
Tamas predominates the end of the life cycle; it’s the destructive force that causes the plant to break apart, die back, and return to the soil. Sattva is the time in between, when the flower is in full bloom and beauty is all around us. Nothing can live without energy (rajas) There can be no harvest, no beauty without sativa, and there can be no rebirth without tamas.
All of nature depends on a healthy relationship between creation and destruction, rajas and tamas, to support the health and the vitality of the planet and all who abide there (sattva).
Just like in nature, our physical and mental health depend on the proper interplay among the gunas. When all three gunas are in balance, everything arises (rajas), abides (sattva), and dissolves (tamas), whether we’re talking about the life cycle of a plant, an idea, a pose, or a stage of life. 🌏
Rajas is the in-breath; tamas, the out-breath; and sattva, the gap in between, the silence where liberation can happen, where magic resides, and where everything is whole.” -Seane Corn