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BG Chap 14 - The mode of goodness binds the soul

The mode of goodness (sattva) produces happiness (peacefulness) and illumination because of its purity. It binds the jīva with false conceptions of happiness, which is the product of peacefulness, and knowledge, which is the product of illumination. The association of the jīva with sattva produces the mis-identity ‘I am happy, I am learned’. Thus sattva produces illumination and happiness and its effects of knowledge and happiness binds the jīva with the conception that he is happy or knowledgeable. Knowledge means knowledge of the real nature of a material object. A person in sattva understands that material objects are temporary and do not have inherent properties of enjoyment. Happiness means tranquility of the senses and body. Engaging in actions for attaining happiness and knowledge produces future bodies which are means to experience that result. It is attachment to happiness and knowledge that binds the soul in the mode of goodness. Such attachment breeds pride, and both attachment and pride are symptoms of the mode of passion. Thus attachment to jñāna causes ajñāna – ignorance.

When a living entity is situated in the mode of goodness he becomes conditioned to feel that he is advanced in knowledge and is better than others. In this way he becomes conditioned. The best examples are the scientist and the philosopher. Each is very proud of his knowledge, and because they generally improve their living conditions, they feel a sort of material happiness. This sense of advanced happiness in conditioned life makes them bound by the mode of goodness of material nature. As such, they are attracted toward working in the mode of goodness, and, as long as they have an attraction for working in that way, they have to take some type of body in the modes of nature.