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Guṇa (Skt., ‘strand’ or ‘cord’). In Hindu Sāṃkyha, the three components, qualities, or attributes (i.e. sattva, tamas, and rājas) of material nature (prakṛti). Everything mental and physical consists of these three guṇas in varying degrees; only pure consciousness (puruṣa) is without attributes (nirguṇa). Disturbance of the equilibrium of the guṇas is the cause of creation, and all of creation can be classified according to the predominance of one of the three guṇas.

In Jainism, guṇa is one of the qualities which apparent objects exhibit: any substance (dravya) has certain guṇas which appear in different modes (parāya).