Definition - What does Taijasa mean?
Sanskrit for 'endowed with light,' taijasa is one of three stages of consciousness experienced by Jiva as a result of Maya. In Hinduism and Jainism, Jiva refers to any living being that is imbued with a life force, and Maya is the illusion that hides us from our true selves. Maya influences Jiva through three states of consciousness: waking, dreaming and deep sleep.
Taijasa is the second stage, understood as dream consciousness in the subtle body.
Yogapedia explains Taijasa
The three stages of consciousness in Jiva are:
- Vishva - the waking stage, engaging the gross, physical body
- Taijasa - the dream stage, engaging the subtle body
- Prajna - the deep sleep stage, engaging the causal, bliss body
In taijasa, the individual connects with their luminous, subtle body in a dream state. Although they remain connected to the realm of form, a deeper understanding of the subtle, inner world is cultivated. As well as during sleep, taijasa can be accessed in a waking state through the subconscious mind, in practices such as Yoga Nidra.
The concept of taijasa can be found in Mantra No. 4 of the Mandukya Upanishad, which reads:
“The second quarter (Pada) is Taijasa whose sphere of activity is the dream state, who is conscious of the internal world of objects, who has seven limbs and nineteen mouths and who enjoys the subtle objects of the mental world.”