Have you ever wondered how Facebook, Instagram and others make us hook on to them? Why people do crazy stuff just to get more likes, or feel depressed when they don’t get views/likes?
That is because, social media companies exploit one of weaknesses that we are born with, i.e. our carving for others approval/attention, our desire to be liked by others. In Vedic terminology these desires are called Vasanas.
Vasanas are one of the reasons we are born, these are desires carried forward from earlier lives. Everyone has them, may be with varying degree of intensity.
Vasanas can be broadly classified as of three types, Lok-Vasana, Deh-Vasana and Shastra-Vasana.
Lok Vasana, like, we saw earlier, make people do things to get others attention, wanting to be liked, want to win over others, control others, have power over others.
Deh Vasana, is about our liking to our bodies. We want to look good, have good clothes, jewelry, luxuries, comforts for our bodies and also our carvings for others company.
Shastra Vasana, is about our excessive need to know things, just for knowing, even if that doesn’t help in professional/spiritual progress.
Like everything, Vasana are good when they help us grow as individuals and as society. But, when it gets excessive, it can cause troubles. So it’s important that we identify them within us, and work towards making sure that they don’t turn excessive.
There are many things help in both identifying and controlling them, like meditation, contemplation/reflection, etc.
Like Bhagavad Gita (6.5) says, “Mind can be your friend and as well as enemy”, so it’s on us to work on these. Choose wisely!
All the Best!