tamasDevanāgarī: तमस् Translation: obscuring; mental darkness, ignorance, illusion, error; deprived of the eye's light or sight; darkness, gloom Similar words:tāmasa Opposite words:sattva, rajas Related concepts:guṇa, buddhi, prakṛti, nidrā
Appears inYoga Sūtra:
Chapter 1: 10Sāṃkhya Kārikā: Bhagavad Gītā:
Chapter 17: 2
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“The ideal Dhyānam,
which becomes easier with practice,
requires certain preparations to reduce
the tendency of the mind to be distracted,
either by being jumpy and agitated, or dull and inert.
Chief among these preparations are proper diet and Prāṇāyāma.”
– T Krishnamacharya on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 2
“Working together with and directed by past impressions,
the three Guṇa, Sattva, Rajas and Tamas determine
whether the mind is calm, agitated or dull.”
– T Krishnamacharya on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 4
“Nidrā or deep sleep is the state in which the
mind’s link with external stimuli is cut off.
In this state, Tamas is dominant.
Although in deep sleep the mind
has no link with anything external,
this does not exclude all links,
which is why we are often able to recall
whether our sleep was sound or disturbed.”
– T Krishnamacharya on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 10
“In Sūtra 1.10 Patañjali defines Nidrā as a
Citta Vṛtti or, a specific type of cognition, one
where Tamas is the object, to the point where
the mind’s link with external stimuli is cut off.
How do we discern between states such as
Pratyāhāra as a disengagement, or Samādhi,
where one is as if empty of one’s own character,
and what is seen as the experience of Tamo Nidrā?”
– Paul Harvey on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 10
“What is Samādhi?
It is the ability to experience the true nature of the objects of Meditation,
through a mind rid of the provocation of excitability and inactivity.”
– T Krishnamacharya on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 20
“These five Kleśa surround the heart of every individual.
They are related to the three Guṇa known as Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.
As long as one chooses not to inquire into the true nature of one’s self and acts mechanically,
they will unknowingly contribute to the dominance of the Kleśa.”
– T Krishnamacharya on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 3
“The mutual aim of Yoga and Sāṃkhya is to
experience the more discerning aspects of the psyche,
rather than just the more grasping aspects of the psyche.
In the former, the tendency of the Buddhi to discern discriminately
prevails over the tendency of Ahaṃkāra to grasp indiscriminately.
In the latter, the tendency of the Ahaṃkāra to grasp indiscriminately
prevails over the tendency of the Buddhi to discern discriminately.
The former is a state known as Buddhi Sattva,
where the clarity of discernment prevails over the
indiscriminate grasping nature of the Ahaṃkāra.
The latter is a state of Buddhi Tamas,
where the discerning clarity of the Buddhi
is obscured by the grasping nature of the Ahaṃkāra.
Thus our Yoga Sādhana has but one primary Saṃkalpa,
that of the reduction of the obscuration by Tamas in the Buddhi.
This reduction of Tamas facilitates the advent of the clarity of Sattva,
as in the metaphor of the reduction of the cloud facilitates the advent of the sun.”
– Paul Harvey on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Three verse 49
“The first Śloka sets the saga on the field of Dharma.
Dharma is how we respond, whatever the situation,
presuming we can sustain our view within the present.
Karma is how we respond, having lost sight of our view,
because it’s become obscured by the force of our memories.
Then Karma is the force now driving us through our memories.
So, Arjuna’s Dharma becomes obscured because of his Karma.”
– Paul Harvey on Bhagavad Gītā Chapter One verse 1
“Its the combination (of Guṇa) thats important.
There is the simile of the oil lamp in the Sāṃkhya Kārikā Śloka 13.
The cotton wick – Light Property (Sattva)
The basin or bowl – Heavy Property (Tamas)
The oil – Flows this way or that (Rajas)
The moment you dip the cotton in the oil it takes on that property.
Thus the Guṇa work together to produce the flame.”
– TKV Desikachar on Sāṃkhya and Yoga
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