Conversation 026 – Modes of material nature (and beyond)

Seeker 1: Suggest me something…if we are feeling something hatred towards someone because they have done wrong to us so should we tell them?

Seeker 1: Or not?

Seeker 1: Because someone has done something wrong to us.

Seeker 2: if we think the other person has the sense to understand, reconcile and admit the wrongdoing and willing to be good to us, we can make an attempt.

Seeker 2: Otherwise it is better to ignore them…if we are forced to transact business with them…we have to be with them only while transacting the business and nothing beyond that.

Seeker 1: What does Gita has to say on this?

Seeker 2: All Gita says is there are three natures of people identified by their symptoms and we will have to deal with them accordingly.

Seeker 2: we have to use our sense to identify the category of people based on their symptoms and behaviour.

Seeker 2: The three categories of people are predominantly in these modes…goodness passion and ignorance.

Seeker 2: Their characteristics are mentioned in great detail.

Seeker 2: How they will act to scenarios is based on their modes they are in.

Seeker 2: it is beautifully described in the 14th and 17th chapter of Bhagavad Gita.

Seeker 2: Gita says to use our sense to act. It is a broad guidance.

Seeker 2: You know life is a complex scenario. Each of us react differently even to the same situations.

Seeker 1: Yes I agree.

Seeker 2: it’s all based on the predominance of the three modes that we cultivate during the course of our life.

Seeker 2: It will be good if you check these two chapters. You will be able to understand why people are behaving their own way.

Seeker 2: “Material nature consists of the three modes-goodness, passion and ignorance. When the living entity comes in contact with nature, he becomes conditioned by these modes.” – Bhagavad Gita 14.5 (

Seeker 2: This is the key.

Seeker 2: Just check this for the summary of this chapter – and also the 17th chapter –

Seeker 2: Everything, even the food we eat etc. have an impact on our nature.

Foods in the mode of goodness increase the duration of life, purify one’s existence and give strength, health, happiness and satisfaction. Such nourishing foods are sweet, juicy, fattening and palatable. Foods that are too bitter, too sour, salty, pungent, dry and hot, are liked by people in the modes of passion. Such foods cause pain, distress, and disease. Food cooked more than three hours before being eaten, which is tasteless, stale, putrid, decomposed and unclean, is food liked by people in the mode of ignorance.” – Bhagavad Gita 17.8-10 (

Seeker 2: A more detail of the modes is also described in the 18th chapter.

Seeker 2: By studying these you will be able to “adjust” your actions accordingly and also will develop the traits required to achieve the mode of goodness.

Seeker 2: However, it’s just not enough if one just achieves the mode of material goodness. One has to transcend the material modes and attain the transcendental mode of goodness if one aspire to live with the Lord. How to do that is the main subject matter of the 18th chapter of Bhagavad Gita and is summarised in the most confidential verse:


sarva-dharman parityajya
mam ekam saranam vraja
aham tvam sarva-papebhyo
moksayisyami ma sucah


“Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reaction. Do not fear.”

Author: Rajini

"Knowledge is the ultimate perfection of self-realization.". (Srimad Bhagavatham 3.26.2) Trying to seek that knowledge through life experiences that leads to compassion, dispassion and ultimately satisfaction.

7 thoughts on “Conversation 026 – Modes of material nature (and beyond)”

  1. Thank you for this conversation. i think also the same person changes at different times – sometimes we are sattva predominant and sometimes rajas takes over. Even in our dealings with people – they change based on whatever is happening in their lives. But knowing the gunas helps us discriminate – how to respond. I am so grateful to you for reminding us of this – Lord Krishna is helping us soooooo much – not only with Big, Big soul issues but also little daily interaction issues too! He is our most, most beloved JaganNath and Jagad Guru and also our little baby Gopal. Jai Sri Krishna 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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