A Fractal created in Apophysis with a photograph merged of a lapiz statue acquired in the Yucatan…
maya: (Sanskrit) “Consisting of; made of,” as in manomaya, “made of mind.”
From the verb root ma, “to measure, to limit, give form.” The principle of appearance or manifestation of God’s power or “mirific energy,” “that which measures.” The substance emanated from Siva through which the world of form is manifested. Hence all creation is also termed maya. It is the cosmic creative force, the principle of manifestation, ever in the process of creation, preservation and dissolution.
The Upanishads underscore maya’s captivating nature, which blinds souls to the transcendent Truth. In Shankara’s Vedantic interpretation, maya is taken as pure illusion or unreality. In Saivism it is one of the three bonds (pasha) that limit the soul and thereby facilitate its evolution. For Saivites and most other nondualists, it is understood not as illusion but as relative reality, in contrast to the unchanging Absolute Reality.
In the Saiva Siddhanta system, there are three main divisions of maya, the pure, the pure-impure and the impure realms. Pure or shuddha maya consists of the first five tattvas – Siva tattva, Shakti tattva, Sadasiva tattva, Ishvara tattva and Shuddhavidya tattva. The pure-impure realm consists of the next seven tattvas. The impure realm consists of the maya tattva and all of its evolutes – from the kala tattva to prithivi, the element earth. Thus, in relation to the physical universe, maya is the principle of ever-changing matter. In Vaishnavism, maya is one of the nine Shaktis of Vishnu.