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Class #11 - March 4, 2018

posted Apr 3, 2018, 6:47 PM by Parshu Ananth   [ updated Sep 23, 2018, 9:12 AM by Siva Kumar Puram ]

Three modes of material nature:

In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna talks at length about the "three modes of material nature." These are subtle forces that influence our behavior as well as every aspect of our physical, mental, and emotional world. The Sanskrit term for these forces is guna, "rope," and the Gita explains how they pull us to act in various ways, even against our better judgment.

The effects of Sattva-guna, the mode of goodness, are seen when an atmosphere of peace, serenity, and harmony prevails in our environment and ourselves. Rajo-guna, the mode of passion, is felt as insatiable desire for temporary things, striving for more and more of them, and perpetual dissatisfaction. Tamo-guna, the mode of ignorance, is indicated when there's laziness, depression, intoxication, and insanity.

The fourteenth chapter of the Bhagavad Gita contains elaborate descriptions of the modes, their symptoms, how they affect us, and ultimately how to become free from their influence through the practice of bhakti-yoga

Mode of Goodness (Sattva-guna)
Mode of Passion (Rajo-guna)
Mode of Ignorance (Tamo-guna)


Karma is defined as activities conditioned by the three modes of nature under the purview of time.

According to Vedic literature, karma is the law of cause and effect. For every action there is a cause as well as a reaction. Karma is produced by performing fruitive activities for bodily or mental development. One may perform pious activities that will produce good reactions or good karma for future enjoyment. Or one may perform selfish or what some call sinful activities that produce bad karma and future suffering. This follows a person wherever he or she goes in this life or future lives. Such karma, as well as the type of consciousness a person develops, establishes reactions that one must experience.

Your association your mode of nature.  Therefore, it is important to associate with good people.

Discussion: Cultural identity is important for self-respect