Three Gunas



I read on another site a nice article about the gunas. I want to add my little participation to it, even if it is maybe not necessary.

When we say that someone is in tamo-guna, it means that this influence is predominant is this person. But of course, like the Bhagavad-Gita says, the fight between the gunas never stops. And Srila Prabhupada said, if I am not wrong, that the gunas are always mixed, in this world. Therefore, in this person we will find, as well, some traces of passion and goodness. Even if someone was permanently sleeping, at least they would appear through his(her) dreams.

When someone is said to be in passion, it is the same -- this person is under a predominance of raja-guna but we will always find some traces of ignorance and goodness. But because passion in Krsna Consciousness is somehow a perverted reflect of what is existing in the spiritual world, we often think it is transcendental. A blissfull and ecstatic kirtana was "COMPLETELY transcendental prabhu!" when, in fact, it is not.

Even, on the material plane, the reign of Hitler (who was himself the embodiment of passion) was and is still seen by many as having something transcendental. Even a catholic priest told me it was. Because there is nothing absolute in the material world, none of those two gunas can be completely pure.

For sattva-guna, it is different. Only sattva can become completely pure, but at this point, this person does not belong anymore to the material world. Even if, geographically, he is still in it. This person, in this case, is a pure devotee, does not matter his rasa with Krsna.

When someone is said to be only in sattva, it means only, as well, that goodness is predominant in this person. But because this guna is much more subtle than the other two, the traces of tamo-guna and raja-guna are also much more subtle and so much more difficult to identify, even for the person himself. Even more so because with this guna, being a calm and peaceful one, a confusion can be easily made between goodness and ignorance. Personally, I saw that many times.

As well, the remnants of raja-guna in this guna are expressed in a much more subtle way and generally take a peaceful and quiet face. They are often not so easily identified precisely because of their aspects. They are generally expressed through cool and calm material calculations, material plans and strategies for our own spiritual life. And for spreading Krsna Consciousness. Instead of acting really on a transcendental platform by completely depending only on Krsna for everything.

Therefore, because specially in Kali-yuga, sattva is the most distant situation for us, at least in the beginning... what to speak of visuddha-sattva which is almost completely unknown by us and even inimaginable for us, we have a tendency to easily think that a person who is in sattva or in an advanced position in sattva-guna is actually a real pure devotee. Even more because we have almost absolutely no point of reference to build a real opinion about it. Visuddha-sattva only belongs to the spiritual world and this world is hidden by Krsna to the non-pure devotees, through His energy, maha-maya. Therefore, not to be in confusion about that, even for the person about himself, is the most difficult thing in this field.

To end, when we join and start to practice Krsna Consciousness and to follow its regulative principles, we immediately base our life on goodness because we follow principles which themselves are in goodness. Nebertheless, it does not mean, because of it, that we are ourselves in sattva, meaning in a predominancy of goodness. It may be, it may be not. At least, the basis of our life is in goodness and it will drive us, soon or later, to goodness if we are not already on this platform. And soon or later, on the desired suddha-sattva one.