To continue evolving and progressing in life, you must make the right choices for yourself, day after day, minute after minute. The choices are endless because the challenges of life are endless, so avoiding all the wrong choices seems impossible. But it is easy, once you begin to listen to your own deepest nature.
For every decision you make, major or mundane, your quantum mechanical body only sees one correct choice, although your mind might recognize many. This confusion gives rise to internal conflict. Wrestling with these conflicts is futile—our actions are based on too many individual processes, all of them changing all the time. Defeating lethal viruses or bacteria is child’s play compared with trying to defeat people’s self-destructive habits.
Instead of wrestling with all the wrong choices people are likely to make in the grip of unhealthy desires, get in touch with the source of your desires. At the source, everyone has healthy desires. In Sanskrit, this is called sattva, a word often translated as “purity.” A better translation of sattva is “the impulse to evolve.”
There are three natural impulses at work in any given situation. One is sattva, the impulse to evolve, to go forward, to progress. The second impulse is tamas, the exact opposite, the impulse to stay the same or regress. Fixed between these two opposites is rajas, a more neutral impulse that dictates action for its own sake.
You cannot force your body to make evolutionary choices. If you aren’t in the flow of sattva, some block exists somewhere in your pathway of desire. Some impurity is keeping you away from your quantum self.
Ways to Increase Sattva
- Meditating using a mantra is one technique that will help remove tremendous amounts of impurity.
- Consume pure food and water.
- Spend time outside in nature.
- Be pleasant and tolerant toward everyone.
- Act on due reflection, not impulse.
- Refrain from anger or criticism, even when you feel it is justified (sattvic people do not point out others’ weaknesses “for their own good”).
- Take time every day for play, humor, relaxation, and good company.
- Be generous with others in every way—giving presents and compliments to people around you, pointing out the best in everyone.
After a while you will see your sattvic side emerge, no matter how blocked your system was to begin with. When that happens, you are approaching the place called perfect health. As you increase in sattva, you effortlessly live in purity and move in the direction of higher evolution. Then and only then does the phrase “living in tune with nature” reveal its real meaning.
Adapted from Perfect Health, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 1990).