I don’t have to tell you about the body/mind/spirit connection. YOU KNOW THIS. You know that when your body is not feeling well, your mind is focused on the suffering of the body and your spirit is praying for relief.
When your body feels great and your mind is focused on good thoughts, your spirit soars. When your body feels good and the mind is taking in bad images, your spirit has difficulty soaring and eventually the body won’t feel good. There are many combinations in mind body spirit equation. You get the picture, you’ve been there, done that, bought the T-Shirt.
“Ayurveda is the complete study and practice of maintaining, restoring and rejuvenating the body/mind complex so that the spirit can soar and uplift you and society as a whole.”
Ayurveda is HUGE!
There is nothing in this world that Ayurveda does not examine. Basic elements, disease, herbs, medicine, chakras, energy fields, birth, death and reincarnation are all within Ayurveda. The Mind is the axis to which the spirit and body are connected.
When focused inwardly the mind focuses on spirit. Focused outwardly the mind focuses on the body and the rest of the physical world.
See if this is true for you.
Sit in a quiet room with no disturbances, close your eyes and focus on your breath. Do this for only a moment. The quiet space is the mind kissing your spirit. Open your eyes, go to a mirror look into it. What happens? The mind starts judging and comparing what is seen in the mirror. It sees the body with what is wrong and what is right, what needs to be done and on and on.
Ayurveda describes the mind as having three states or qualities. There is no judgement here just a description. Please keep this in mind as you go through through the definitions.
Sattwa Rajas Tamas
- Sattwa is the state of mind that is peaceful, calm, alert, gently focused, unconditionally loving and light. Sattwa is the state of consciousness that is awake.
- Rajas is the state of mind that is active, emotive, movement, changeable and excitable. Rajas is the state of consciousness that is semi awake.
- Tamas is the state of mind that is lethargic, attached, depressed, dark, dense and confused. Tamas is the state of consciousness that is asleep.
The Tamasic Mind
The tamasic mind sleeps too much, eats heavy dull comfort foods, thinks of self comfort. It tends to be lazy and sedentary. This mind is prone to depression, fear and anger born of inability to change its life. It is difficult for a tamasic mind to take in new ideas, keep an open mind or be objective. Many things are taken personally in relationship.
The body attached to a tamasic mind is overweight, with dull hair, skin and eyes and prone to diseases that come from overgrowth and obesity. The tamasic mind is attracted to activities that are passive and dark, it may be prone to depressing forms of entertainment and news.
The Rajasic Mind
The rajasic is always active, eats quickly, tries new foods, thinks of changing its situation and always tends to be planning and endlessly moving. This mind is prone to stress, fear and anger born of the need to change their life. Excitement, competition and achievement is its game. It is difficult for a rajasic mind to stay still and be content with “what is”. The mind may be open to new ideas and be objective just as easily as being closed to new ideas and closed-minded. Changeability is key when it comes to rajas. Relationships come and go in the world of the Rajasic mind.
The body attached to a rajasic mind is ever changing. Weight, fitness levels, brightness or dullness of hair, skin and eyes are ever fluctuating. The body is prone to diseases that come from excitability and stress. The rajasic mind is attracted to activities that are sportive, creative and intense. It may be prone to sex, violent and activist forms of entertainment and news.
The Sattwic Mind
The sattwic mind is meditative, eats light, digestible, healthy whole foods and thinks of service to self and others. It tends to be calm, aware and attentive. A sattwic mind is prone to loving, wisdom and truthfulness born of the ability to be present and focused.
This mind takes to new ideas, keeps an open mind and is objective. The sattwic mind understands that there is an appropriate place and time for everything. Nothing is taken personally in relationship.
The body attached to a sattwic mind is well cared for, has a unique glow, and is not prone to chronic diseases. The sattwic mind understands the role of time on the body and adjusts accordingly. Activities that are, in nature, light and still are attractive to the sattwic Mind. It is prone to the study of self, others and spirituality as forms of entertainment.
Although the sattwic mind seems like it is the most advantageous “spiritual” mind to have, it is not the most well suited for worldly life. Sattwa, rajas and tamas are in every aspect of life. Balanced contemplation, activity and sleep are key for a healthy life. Ayurveda has the tools you need to balance sattwa, rajas and tamas. Tune in next time as we delve into the instruments of the mind. Namaste