Bhagavad Gita

Shrimad Bhagavad Gita: Chapter 14: Guṇa Traya Vibhāga Yogam, Verse 10:

Bhagavad Gita - krishna

(Image Courtesy Mahanidhiswami)

The Mind Vibrates Between The Three Gunas, Adopting Their Characteristics

रजस्तमश्चाभिभूय सत्त्वं भवति भारत |
रज: सत्त्वं तमश्चैव तम: सत्त्वं रजस्तथा || 14.10||

rajas tamaśh chābhibhūya sattvaṁ bhavati bhārata
rajaḥ sattvaṁ tamaśh chaiva tamaḥ sattvaṁ rajas tathā|| 14.10||

Shloka Translation
BG – Ch. 13- Ver. 10:

Sometimes, O scion of Bharat, kindness (sattva) triumphs over desire (rajas) and ignorance (tamas). At times, passion (rajas) triumphs over goodness (sattva) and ignorance (tamas), whereas at other times, ignorance (tamas) triumphs over both (rajas).


Shree Krishna now describes how the temperament of the same person fluctuates between the three guas. The material energy contains these three guas, and our mind is formed of the same energy. As a result, all three guas are present in our minds. They’re like three wrestlers competing against each other.

Each one keeps throwing the others down, so the first is on top sometimes, the second is on top sometimes, and the third is on top sometimes. Similarly, the three guas continue to gain control over the individual’s temperament, which oscillates between the three modes. One or the other guna begins to dominate depending on the outward environment, inward reflection, and the tendencies of previous lifetimes.

When the sattva guna dominates, one becomes serene, content, generous, kind, and helpful. When rajo guna rises to prominence, one gets enraged, ambitious, resentful of others’ success, and develops a taste for sensual pleasures. Sleep, sloth, hostility, rage, resentment, violence, and doubt are all common symptoms of tamo guna.

Verse & what we can learn

Because our mind is made up of the three gunaas, it is always under the influence of those three gunaas. What effect do these three gunaas have on the mind? Do they work in a sequential or parallel manner? Is it true that one guna is more powerful than the other?

According to Shri Krishna, our mind can only be affected by one guna at a time. When one guna establishes supremacy and imposes its authority over the others, this occurs. Sattva triumphs over rajas and tamas when it is dominant. Similarly, rajas has the upper hand over the other two, whereas tamas has the upper hand over the other two. In our minds, the three gunaas are at odds with one another. When one guna wins, the other guna loses.

To acquire knowledge and to implement that knowledge in life one needs to be mentally and physically active and healthy and for that daily meditation is a great tool.

There are various types of meditation like Buddhist meditation, heartfulness meditation, mindfulness meditation, meditation for stress, and each meditation benefits are countless. There is also numerous meditation techniques for beginners which help in practicing daily meditation so go ahead and start your journey towards a peaceful and balanced life.

In the next shloka, Shri Krishna continues on the idea of each gunas signs.

Let’s learn to live with “The Gita” via Meditation Affinity…

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