Vegetables in tama guna

Hare krsna devote my obeisances.

I would like to ask about the carrot, some devotees say that it is in the mode of ignorance. I was reading a bit and they were referring to the red carrot, not the orange carrot. What do you think about this?

Is there a list of vegetables in the ignorance mode?

Hare Krsna

You need to be a member of ISKCON Desire Tree | IDT to add comments!

Join ISKCON Desire Tree | IDT

Email me when people reply –


  • I have come across this thing too.

    It has a story in connection to this in this article give by Srila Narayana Maharaja's servant, Sripad Madhava Maharaja 

    you can read under this article, the story why carrots are prohibited.

    The following history was spoken by Srila Narayana Maharaja's servant, Sripad Madhava Maharaja: [American scientists have discovered in their laboratories that there are 21 different types of slow poisons in both onions and garlic; so they are not innocent foods. In Satya-yuga, the sages performed gomedha (cow) and asvamedha (horse) sacrifices for the welfare of the whole universe. A very old cow or a horse would be sacrificed by being cut into pieces and placed in the fire. Afterwards, the rsis would utter mantras and the same animal would come alive in a beautiful young body.

    Once the pregnant wife of a sage who was about to perform a gomedha sacrifice had a very strong desire to eat. She had heard that if, during pregnancy, one has a desire to eat and does not fulfill it, the newly born child will always have saliva coming from its mouth. This would be troublesome, both for the mother and the child.

    The sage’s wife had a strong desire to eat meat, and thus she stealthily took one piece of meat from the body of the cow that was offered in sacrifice. She hid it and was planning to eat it very soon. Later, the sage was finishing the sacrifice and uttered all the mantras for the cow to come to life. However, when he saw the new cow, he noticed that there was a small part missing from her left side. He was surprised because this had never happened to him before. He went into meditation and realized that his wife had taken away a piece of meat during the sacrifice.

    Due to the effect of the mantras uttered by the sage, there was now life in this small piece of meat. The wife now also understood what happened, and she quickly threw the meat far away. Shortly afterwards, red lentils sprouted from the blood of this meat, garlic sprouted from the bones (both garlic and the bones of a cow are white), and onions and carrots sprouted from the flesh. Thus, these foods are never eaten by any Vaisnava. They are foods in the mode of ignorance.]

    [A devotee may ask, "Why would our Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja, have allowed carrots to be eaten if they are so bad? The answer was kindly given by Srila Prabhupada himself, in Boston, in 1969. He said, "If I told you all the rules and regulations now, you would faint. So for now, follow all the rules I've given, and make up the balance by chanting Hare Krsna." He also often said that he was following the guidelines given by his Guru Maharaja; that is, to induce the Westerners to first chant Hare Krsna, and as they become more and more established in that, the rules and regulations would gradually come.]

    [Srila Narayana Gosvami Maharaja:] There are two kinds of carrots. One is dark red and one is orange. Though we don’t take either of these two types of carrots, I have allowed the Western devotees to take the orange type because it is not like blood. The red one is like blood, so they should not eat it. But, we don’t eat either one. I have allowed them to eat this, and in Delhi I have also allowed them.

    HH Jayapataka Swami mentioned once that the word for modern day carrot and the word used in the story do not mean the same thing. This would especially appear to be reasonable as we find that the modern day organe red coloured carrot is a concocted crossed hybrid vegetable made by man, and certainly not around in former times quotes in shastra.

    I really didn't know until you posted this question.. to be frank..

    I was all the while eating carrots.

    Even now i see that there is not a big issue eating carrots. 

    If your really want to follow strict rules of  Vaishnavism there are too much and too many. Basic rules 4 regulative principles are atleast most important rules to be followed by all. 

    If you go by strict rules in Vaishnavism.. the restricted vegetables are.. too many that we cannot avoid.

    even basic tomato, potato, cabbage, cauliflower, white egg plant, carrots , bell peppers , mushrooms, lettuce, brocoli, raddish, red lentils ( masoor ki daal). 

    I personally don't find the reason why not to eat tomoto.  Tomatoes ,peppers and eggplant are not eaten by old staunch vaishnavas.

    (The nightshade vegetables or Solanaceae, a plant family that includes eggplant, peppers, potatoes and tomatoes. (The term 'nightshade' may have been coined because some of these plants prefer to grow in shady areas, and some flower at night.). Night is considered mode of ignorance. 

    SO are mushrooms growing in shady and places where there is filth and no sunlight.  they grow in mode of ignorance so they produce qualities of tamas in the people who eat them.

    Sea weeds are also avoided. as they grow in places where there is no sunlight.( mode of ignorance).

    Reason why raddish, potato and carrots are avoided is also the same as they grow under the ground and have not been exposed to sunlight so they are having tamasic qaulites and produce tamas in the person who consumes them.

    -->now the list cannot be followed by all of us. 

    “Because mushrooms grow in a filthy place, they are not usually offered to Krishna.” (A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. 17th November 1971. Letter to: Himavati Delhi).

    Some say carrots, beetroot , cabbage even green chillie are foreign and so they are not offered to Lord 

    Tamil Vaishnavas avoid brinjals on Ekadasi days.

    Gaudiya Vaishnavas believe that..''consuming vegetables that grow under the soil, the list of which includes the onion, radish, potato and turnip. They believe that such vegetables are Tamasic (from the abode of darkness), and that eating them results in emotions detrimental to a spiritual life."

    But Srila Prabhupada didn't ban Potatos , egg plants.  He said Potato is the king of vegetables while eggplant is the queen of vegetables.

    Moreover Srila prabhupada said..  "If I told you all the rules and regulations now, you would faint. So for now, follow all the rules I've given, and make up the balance by chanting Hare Krsna."

    Srila Prabhupada was much more considerate and more logical then old staunch vaishnavas  who  laid too much emphasis on rules and regulations which we find illogical to follow.

     In this connection, deśa-kāla-pātra (the place, the time and the object) should be taken into consideration.

    Hare Krishna.

    Milk and Carrots
    Featuring lectures, essays, and books on the science and cultivation of pure Bhakti by Srila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja.
  • E-Counselor

    Hare Krsna prabhuji,


    Onion and garlic are considered to be in the mode of ignorance and not to be had, as per scriptures.

    We do not have mushrooms also (I have not seen in any ISKCON restaurant).

    I am not aware of carrot being in the mode of ignorance. Carrots are in fact consumed even on ekadasi, so I doubt that they are in the mode of ignorance.


    Your servant,

    Radha Rasamayi DD

    • What about poppy seeds Radha mata? ... While i was in Bengal, i ate a curry made of poppy seeds and potato, and some of the them were saying that poppy seeds induce sleep. Even the plant (from which the seeds are extracted) is known to be the source of opium. Do vaishnavas consume poppy seeds and are they tamasic?

      • E-Counselor

        Hare Krsna PRabhuji,


        Poppy seeds are consumed by vaishnavas. I have also seen that curry of potato with poppy seeds. Don't know about its quality of inducing sleep though.


        YOur servant,

        Radha Rasamayi DD

This reply was deleted.