--The Tri Guna concept
The three gunas, namely Satva, Rajas and Tamas- are the three essential components or energies of the mind. Ayurveda provides a distinct description of people on the basis of their Manasa (Psychological) Prakriti (constitution). Genetically determined, these psychological characteristics are dependent on the relative dominance of the three gunas.
The psyche is of three types –Pure or Satva, Rajas and Tamasa
While all individuals have mixed amounts of the three, the predominant guna determines an individual's mansa prakriti. In equilibrium, the three gunas preserve the mind (and indirectly the body), maintaining it in a healthy state. Any disturbance in this equilibrium results in various types of mental disorders.
Satva characterized by lightness, consciousness, pleasure and clarity, is pure, free from disease and cannot be disturbed in any way. It activates the senses and is responsible for the perception of knowledge.
Rajas, the most active of the gunas, have motion and stimulation as its characteristics. All desires, wishes, ambitions and fickle-mindedness are a result of the same.
While Tamas, is characterized by heaviness and resistance. It produces disturbances in the process of perception and activities of the mind. Delusion, false knowledge, laziness, apathy, sleep and drowsiness are due to it.
Rajas and Tamas as with the dosas, can be unbalanced by stress and negative desires as kama (lust), irshya (malice), moha (delusion and hallucination), lobha(greed), cinta (anxiety), bhaya (fear) and krodha(anger).
Each of these three properties is also comprised of sub-types and the particular sub-type to which one belongs to determine the qualities of that individual.
Satvika individuals are usually noble and spiritual in character.
Rajasika are vulnerable to temptations, are very human in their character and approach to life.
Tamasika individuals are the most down to earth, concerned about fundamental questions of practical existence, especially when confronted by more spiritual and less physical issues.
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