Tamas; a word from Ayurveda meaning dark, dead, stuck, stagnant, or a poor attitude. Sattva, its opposite, means light, life giving, clean and conscious with a peaceful attitude. In Ayurveda these concepts pertain to all aspects of life. For a happy, healthy and whole life Sattva must be a stabilizing force. One way to bring the positive attributes of Sattva out in a person is through food.
Some examples of life-giving foods are; fresh fruit and veggies, legumes, nuts and seeds, wholefoods, non GMO and gluten free, Ghee, fermented foods and clean water not to mention beautiful environments, enjoyable music and soft colors. Life-taking away foods would be processed foods and food-like substances as well as meat, dead-food, canned food, condiments and tap water. Hard core music, dull or overstimulating environments as well as complaining are life-taking away food.
By eliminating life-taking foods and adding more life-giving foods the body, mind and spirit will find its way into balance. Our bodies are designed to live with nature, to be filters for natural products. Our modern world is full of synthetic products and people are more removed from nature. The Sattvic path is a journey over time that requires one conscious step, then another, then another and another all while experiencing fulfillment, satisfaction and more peace along the way.
Karen Barbarick-Collins is a Certified Ayurvedic Technician and Registered Yoga Alliance Teacher. She is the founder of Bending Blade Healing Arts.