As our awareness levels rise all over the globe, we see that people are regaining interest in healthy and spiritually positive lifestyle, especially food and diet. Not all foods are at the same spiritual level. We need to incorporate in our lifestyle more spiritually positive foods in order to have a healthy and positive life. To understand this better we can divide our food choices into three categories. Satvic, Rajasic and Tamasic.
Satvic is the most positive type of energy where it does the maximum good and is free of harm. Rajasic is a lower level of energy where there is power but not harmless. Tamasic is the energy of death, decay and negativity. In the times of Kaliyuga or negative age of the world, we saw a proliferation of negative diet. Food became laden with harmful chemicals, GMOs and pesticides, while non-vegetarian and processed food industries prospered leading to ill health, dangerous diseases and higher medical costs.
Level 1: As you can see in the above pyramid, at the lowest spiritual level are foods that harm us the most. Animal products carry energy of death and pain. They are most unsuitable for the human body as they cannot be consumed by us in their raw and live state and require killing and cooking. Similarly non-organic vegetables that are treated with pesticides carry death energy and are unsuitable for our consumption. These foods will have the maximum Tamasic energy and are best avoided. They also increase dependency on medical drugs and increase cravings and addictions on smoking, narcotics or alcohol. Not only do Tamasic foods erode health, they can also bring negative karmic effects by way of unhappy life situations as they involve harming others and self.
Level 2: The next level we have foods that are processed in factories, tinned, canned or frozen foods that carry stale energy. Fast foods, candies, foods with added sugars, artificial preservatives and chemical flavors are also in this category. These foods lack nutritional value although they are high in calories. As these are not fresh, natural and wholesome, they also have a Tamasic vibrations and can lead to ill health and suffering and also make one sluggish and dull both physically and mentally. Negative news and violent images are also part of Tamasic diet and brings the spiritual quality of our life down.
Level 3: The next level is of foods that are cooked with spicy flavors and fat. Even if we cook such foods at home and even if they are vegetarian they would at best be Rajasic foods. Caffeine rich beverages also come in this category. Though such foods provide vitality, energy and nutrition, because they are acidic and hot they can harm our health leading to digestive complaints and lifestyle related diseases. Rajasic foods although stimulating and invigorating, can also increase anger, desire, lust and stress while reducing relaxation, contentment and peace of mind. Not only Rajasic foods but useless gossip and mindless entertainment also are part of Rajasic diet as they increase unhealthy cravings.
Level 4: At a somewhat higher level are wholesome meals that provide a balanced diet consisting of carbohydrates, fats as well as vegetables. Cooked meals even if homemade and vegan, reduce the natural raw energy of nature and therefore have limited healing vibrations. Yet they are a lot better than Tamasic and Rajasic foods, being slightly more Satvic in their energy value. Vegetables retain life energy when freshly harvested as the entire living being is not killed and merely their fruits and regenerative parts are taken. Cooked vegetarian meals can be a part of a spiritually positive lifestyle as long as you avoid overeating. Positive news, useful information, constructive hobbies and spiritual knowledge are also a part of Satvic diet and so is learning and spending time with spiritually positive people (Satsang).
Level 5: At the higher level of the spiritual pyramid we have organic, vegan and raw diet comprising fresh fruits, herbs, nuts and vegetables that are not treated with any chemicals or pesticides. These Satvic foods provide the maximum calming and soothing effect and are great healers when they are consumed in their naturally ripened state without much cooking. They are packed with healthy vitamins, enriching minerals and moderate amounts of good fat, protein, carbohydrates and natural sugars. Increasing the percentage of such foods in our diet ensures good longevity, fit body and sharper mind. They are also great for cleansing and purification as large amounts of toxins and in some cases even tumors and stones can be cleansed away through raw organic plants and natural juices. As far as arguments regarding need for animal fats and animal proteins the human body can produce them within while Vitamin B12 can be produced naturally by healthy bacteria in our gut. A raw vegan diet can fulfill most of our nutritional needs very well and is spiritually the most positive diet. Meditation and self-realization also is a supremely positive activity and therefore part of a Satvic diet.
Level 6: While animals including humans consume secondary sources of energy such as other animals and vegetables, plants process the elemental energies directly in the form of water, sunlight, air and minerals from earth. These four elements of the physical world can create all manner of life on earth through their interplay. Almost all humans require secondary foods and are unable to process the primary energy of the elements directly except while fasting on a diet primarily composed of water, minerals and vitamins for a limited period of time for the purpose of detoxification and cleansing. Living in a positive natural environment where you receive clean air, clean fresh water and sunshine everyday is necessary for spiritual growth. Combined with meditation and eco-friendly, mindful living it will bring tremendous benefit in every aspect of life.
Level 7: The fifth element beyond earth, fire, air and water is the Spirit element which is the pure energy that creates all the lower four elements. This is the primordial energy of the cosmos that shapes the universe. Those who meditate and reach thought-free consciousness are able to channel pure Spirit energy through them during meditation. By meditating for long periods of time one can increase spiritual nourishment and depend lesser on the lower four elements of nature by accessing more and more energy directly from Spirit. Through increased peace, love and self-contentment one reduces physical greed and hunger. Meditation also lowers our rate of metabolism because in a thought-free state we burn fewer calories unlike during mental and physical work. However it is quite rare to survive for many days on Spirit energy alone in human form even if you meditate constantly and very few have claimed to reach this state while still being alive in a human body.
NOTE: Claims of those who profess that they live for years on ‘prana ‘ or spiritual energy alone have been disputed in many cases although there maybe notable exceptions. Kindly do not force any diet on yourself and follow own intuition. You can enhance the spiritual quality of your diet gradually and this is meant to naturally happen as you meditate for longer periods of time progressively. You will find that you are intuitively attracted to the right diet to suit unique needs when you meditate everyday.
Swati Prakash is a spiritual author and can be followed on www.amazon.com/author/swatiprakash