Gunas are not really moods, but modes – modes of Nature. If the mind falls victim to these, then one has to practice Witness Consciousness and transcend them.
People really want bliss via their experiences; but what they are most often desiring is the bliss of their ego. The Bliss of the Atman is called Ananda; the bliss of the ego is called sukha. Sukha is relative happiness based upon sensual experience alone.
The Seers remained on the cutting edge of revelatory power of Prakasha Shakti while analyzing name and form. Without this stance at their very core, the gunas of rajas and tamas present in Nature would have deluded their minds.
There is complacency in sattva, "Oh, all is going well, I do not have to do anything." But until you realize the truth of inaction, you can still get sucked into cycles of rajas and tamas again.
One should not intensify an impure mind. Many souls have not prepared themselves with preliminaries like sitting and breathing, and the least little surge of energy may imbalance their minds. This is why teaching by avasthas, stages, is important. If the potter does not remove foreign particles from the clay, his raw material, and makes a pot from it, then fires it, it will only break in the intense heat of the kiln. Similarly, if people do not remove initial impurities from the mind before exposing it to the heat of advanced sadhana, the mind will "break apart."
It is during initial spiritual practice that negativities are on the wax. For instance, family, friends, and colleagues want to hold you down to the world. Old karmas from the past are also surfacing due to this early purge. You must persevere and keep the courage of your earlier convictions until this early storm passes.
A basic and undeniable fact is, that we have not seen worldly people get enlightened. Enlightened beings come from the ranks of those who are practicing Yoga, meditation, and other purificatory methods. In short, moral and ethical living does not produce realization.
If you do not test yourself, Nature will. If you do not introduce yourself to the transition of death while you live, Yama will take you by surprise....
It is one thing to prove to yourself that you are not the body – that is not hard for a spiritual person; but to prove to yourself that you are not the mind is a whole other level of attainment, for the mind has its knowledge, its memories, its ego.
If you have a mental or spiritual problem, austerity, tapas, is the best way to destroy it. Therapy might chase it into hiding in the recesses of the subconscious, but it will only return again – sometimes in a more virulent form. Tapas is intensification in the right way, for it burns problems away at the root.
If I make my whole life tapas, then how can God remain veiled from me?
One cannot meditate, serve, study, or act in the right spirit, or even get substantial results until ignorance is gone. How can it be otherwise?
Analyze like this: "I have trouble with pleasure and pain, so I will concentrate on the source of pleasure and pain." What is that source? The senses attached to the elements. In this way the astute aspirant proceeds from the problematic dualities to the causal quintuplications. Soon one has no more trouble with pain and pleasure or other sets of dualities.
If one identifies with the five sheaths, the five cosmic bondages and the three great desires are the result.
<>Five Sheaths: body, vital force, dual mind, intellect, I-sense
<>Five Cosmic bondages: root ignorance, attachment to form, attachment to nature, desire, good, bad, and mixed actions (i.e. karma)
<>Three Great Desires: desire for the worlds, desires for bodily satisfaction, desire for religious ceremonials (that lead back to worlds)
When you do everything from the standpoint of desire for limited existence, then karma is the continual result.
There are two spiritual knots according to the Father of Yoga
1 - Anavastitatvani: the inability to make spiritual progress.
2 - Alabdhabhumikatva: habitual failure.
When practicing, renunciation is a quality of the mind. But when you have attained renunciation, you realize it is an attribute of the Atman. Atman renounces everything.