09/04/2011 Comments Off on Illusion


Illusion Illusion defined–noun 1. something that deceives by producing a false or misleading impression of reality. 2. the state or condition of being deceived; misapprehension. 3. an instance of being deceived. 4. Psychology. a perception, as of visual stimuli (optical illusion), that represents what is perceived in a way different from the way it is in reality.

When the world arises in me,
It is just an illusion:
Water shimmering in the sun,
A vein of silver in mother-of-pearl,
A serpent in a strand of rope.

From me the world streams out
And in me it dissolves,
As a bracelet melts into gold,
A pot crumbles into clay,
A wave subsides into water.
– Ashtavakra Gita 2: 9-10

sā vā etasya saḿdraṣṭuḥ śaktiḥ sad-asad-ātmikā
māyā nāma mahā-bhāga yayedaḿ nirmame vibhuḥ

The Lord is the seer, and the external energy, which is seen, works as both cause and effect in the cosmic manifestation. O greatly fortunate Vidura, this external energy is known as māyā or illusion, and through her agency only is the entire material manifestation made possible.
Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 3.5.25

bhayaḿ dvitīyābhiniveśataḥ syād īśād apetasya viparyayo ‘smṛtiḥ
tan-māyayāto budha ābhajet taḿ bhaktyaikayeśaḿ guru-devatātmā

Fear arises when a living entity misidentifies himself as the material body because of absorption in the external, illusory energy of the Lord. When the living entity thus turns away from the Supreme Lord, he also forgets his own constitutional position as a servant of the Lord. This bewildering, fearful condition is effected by the potency for illusion, called māyā. Therefore, an intelligent person should engage unflinchingly in the unalloyed devotional service of the Lord, under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master, whom he should accept as his worshipable deity and as his very life and soul.
Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 11.2.37

A sleeping person imagines an alternative reality for himself and, seeing himself as having various names and forms, forgets his waking identity, which is distinct from the dream. Similarly, the senses of one whose consciousness is bewildered by illusion perceive only the names and forms of material objects. Thus such a person loses his memory and cannot know You (God).
S’rîmad Bhâgavatam 10:84:24-25


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