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In the philosophy of Yoga, all matter in the universe arises from the fundamental substrate called Prakriti. From this ethereal Prakriti the three primary gunas (qualities) emerge creating the essential aspects of all nature—energy, matter and consciousness. These three gunas are tamas (darkness), rajas (activity), and sattva (beingness).
 

Rajas is a state of energy, action, change and movement.  The nature of rajas is of attraction, longing and attachment and rajas strongly binds us to the fruits of our work. To reduce rajas avoid rajasic foods, over exercising, over work, loud music, excessive thinking and consuming excessive material goods. Rajasic foods include fried foods, spicy foods, and stimulants.
 

Rajas - accounts for motion, energy and activity.  Experienced psychologically as suffering, craving and attachment.  Classical Yoga: - when rajas (energy) predominates, consciousness is pravritti - active and energetic, tense and willful.

Rajasic Food is usually hot food, both in terms of temperature and spiciness; they include fried food, coffee, tea, spices, fish, eggs, salt, peppers, chocolate and other stimulants. These foodstuffs are seen by some as a block to the body-mind equilibrium, feeding the body at the expense of the mind and stimulating artificial processes in the brain making it restless and wandering.

 

The mind’s psychological qualities are highly unstable and can quickly fluxuate between the different gunas.  The predominate guna of the mind acts as a lens that effects our perceptions and perspective of the world around us. Thus, if the mind is in rajas it will experience world events as chaotic, confusing and demanding and it will react to these events in a rajasic way.

All gunas create attachment and thus bind one’s self to the ego.  “When one rises above the three gunas that originate in the body; one is freed from birth, old age, disease, and death; and attains enlightenment” (Bhagavad Gita 14.20).  While the yogi/nis goal is to cultivate sattva, his/her ultimate goal is to transcend their misidentification of the self with the gunas and to be unattached to both the good and the bad, the positive and negative qualities of all life.

 

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