prīti – pleasure
aprīti – pain
viṣāda – despair/delusion/lethargy
ātmakāḥ – essential
prakāśa – illumination
pravṛtti – movement/action
niyama – restraint
artha – purpose
anyonya – reciprocal/mutual
abhibhava – oppose
āśraya – support
mithuna – union
vrtti – fluctuation
guna – essential quality/attribute
They are the essential underlying qualities of the Manifest.
- The Manifest (Vyakta) has three essential qualities.
- Their nature is pleasure, pain and delusion.
- They are existing substances and positive entities (eg: pleasure is not the absence of pain).
- They have never been observed coming together or separating from each other.
- Prakrti (Primordial Nature) in its initial state is a delicate equilibrium of these three qualities.
- Each of the qualities serves a purpose:
- The purpose of pleasure is illumination.
- The purpose of pain is action.
- The purpose of delusion is restraint.
- They are inter-dependent – they exist for the sake of each other.
- They are mutually dominating. When one is active it dominates the others.
- When pleasure is active it dominates over pain and delusion.
- When pain is active it dominates pleasure and delusion.
- When delusion is active it dominates pleasure and pain.
- They are mutually supportive. When one is active it is supported by the others.
- When illumination is active it rests upon and is supported by action and restraint.
- When action is active it rests upon illumination and restraint.
- When restraint is active it rests upon illumination and action.
- They produce. Each quality, when it becomes active produces effects that are dependent on the other two qualities. This does not imply causality. Effects are merely an outcome of a change in the combination of the qualities.
- They depend on each other. They never exist separate from each other. “The attributes exist in the attributes” (BG 3.28). They cause each other:
- As a beautiful woman brings pleasure to her husband, misery to the other wives and delusion to other men, so does illumination bring about action and restraint.
- As a righteous king protects his subjects and punishes his enemies, so does action bring about illumination and restraint.
- As clouds cause a farmer pleasure and a lonely lover pain, so does restraint bring about illumination and action.