All of us have our own patterns of anger, fear, and greed, which are called samskaras in Sanskrit, a word which means "to do intensely." Samskaras are negative emotions worn deep into the mind by our repeated actions. They operate beyond the level that our willpower reaches, which is why in tense situations we often find ourselves unable to control the influence of anger, fear, and greed. These forces in consciousness propel us into situations where they will be provoked, Sri Easwaran said. Life is the theater where we act out our samskaras again and again, and we pay the consequences until pain forces our spiritual evolution to a higher state of consciousness.

Dolores Wood, How To End Suffering