Sattva: The path of goodness

I enjoy learning about yoga. I think practicing aspects of it such as meditation helps create a healthy and balanced life. What many people aren’t aware of is that yoga extends beyond just poses. There is such a thing as a yogic philosophy of life. Today, I’d like to share one aspect of it with you.

Yogis say that all matter in the universe arises from one prime, feminine energy: prakriti. When prakriti comes into contact with the spiritual, masculine energy, purusha, it starts a process of evolution that leads through several stages to the creation of the existing material world.

Prakriti manifests as three gunas, which translates to “qualities” of matter. There is tamas, which refers to a sense of darkness, inertia, inactivity, ignorance, and attachment; rajas, which is related to energy, action, change, movement, diversity, and passion; and sattva, which is about harmony, balance, joy, purity, virtue, serenity, and unity.

The goal of the yogi is to cultivate sattva. I am bringing it forward because, in part, I think it’s interesting, but more so, I think that – yogi or not – striving to cultivate what one might consider a sattvic life is a goal worth striving for because, in essence, it’s a path of goodness.

If you’re interested in learning more about the distinction between these qualities of matter and the sattvic path, you can start by checking out this article. It’s not perfect, but it’s something to get you on your way.