I’ve spoken before about vasanas and samskaras. I wanted to share further insight.
Vasanas are those unresolved experiences stored with an energetic charge. The energy comes from incomplete karma, plus further suppression that’s used to sustain them.
We experience vasanas as impulses, addictions, irrational desires, and compulsions.
Repressed energy seeks resolution, so leaks out into our experience in various ways. Reactivity, negativity, unsuitable action, and the above.
However, if we have the right healing approach and allow what is arising to complete, those will resolve and won’t express into thoughts, actions, and events. We’ll gradually resolve our backlog.
Samskaras are the grooves laid down by sustained vasanas and habitual patterns. They’re also the pattern vasanas express through.
For example, if someone bullied us as a child, we may avoid confrontation or self-assertion. That can become an automatic habit. We don’t even recognize we’re doing it. We may even consider it part of our personality or sense of self.
And yet, the unresolved anger and shame can show up in inappropriate behaviours with supervisors or partners. Rather than asserting, we react, blame, and sulk.
Recently, I noticed that when we heal a charge (vasana or repressed emotion), the impression or samskara it created remains.
For example, the aversion to self-assertion may continue even after the childhood trauma is healed.
However, as we become increasingly aware, we’ll notice habits that are discordant or resistant. Noticing them is like seeing through them. Then it’s no longer accepted by the mind and falls away.
Part of healing is removing the charge, but then we soften the impressions it made. The fire (rajas) is cooled, then the inertia (tamas) is transformed into clarity (sattva).
We’ll find that as we heal, there will still be some old habits that continue. They’re no longer charged but the less life-supporting pattern can remain. They’re not addictive now, just habitual. And there may be some resistance to change.
Happily, with the charge gone, we can more easily see these habits if we’re willing to look. When we stop supporting them, they soften and fade.
There is a kind of learning in this healing process. A learning how to be with life in optimum ways. Then we develop habits that support the flow of life and joy.