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There are three Gunas:
SATTVA - RAJAS - TAMAS
Guṇa is the tendency not action itself.
Each of the three gunas is ever present simultaneously in every particle of creation but the variations in equilibrium manifest all the variety in creation including matter, mind, body and spirit. All creations are made up of a balance composed of all three forces. For creation to progress, each new stage “needs a force to maintain it and another force to develop it into a new stage.
The force that develops the process in a new stage is rajo guna, while tamo guna is that which checks or retards the process in order to maintain the state already produced, so that it may form the basis for the next stage”. Sattva is the power of harmony, balance, light and intelligence – the higher or spiritual potential.
Rajas is the power of energy, action, change and movement – the intermediate or life potential.
Tamas is the power of darkness, inertia form and materiality – the lower or material potential.
Prakriti, that is our senses - our thoughts, memories, desires, and even our intelligence, is said to be a composite of three prime qualities as sattva, rajas and tamas. The three gunas reflect the three worlds of Vedic thought.Earth is the realm of tamas or darkness, physical matter. The Atmosphere, also called rajas in Vedic thought, is the realm of action and change symbolized by the storm with its process of lightning, thunder and rain, but it indicates energy or subtle matter on all levels. Heaven is the realm of harmony and light, sattva. It indicates light as a universal principle that is the causal or original form behind the gross and subtle elements or forms of matter and energy.