M A Y A   A N D   I L L U S I O N
Selections from the Agni Yoga Series

Presented before the Agni Yoga Society, November 7, 2006

     The law of the transition into the spirit world is not complex. The one condition may not be likened to the other. As the dust of a volcano, so countless are the spirits who return to the spiritual world. Of course, matter is a condition of spirit. But blood differs so greatly from its equivalent in the spirit, which is nurtured by prana, that the boundaries are broken throughout all Worlds. It is with difficulty that the spirit realizes its release from matter. The spirit attached to Earth clothes itself in the astral body, which creates for him the illusion of Earth here in the hearth of cravings and remorse. But the spirit which speeds out, in upward striving only, can avoid the astral plane, because the astral body is but superfluous rubbish. Leaves of Morya’s Garden II, II, 3.

     When We speak about a destined event We see its true origin; but whoever will judge according to visible effects only will be behindhand in his judgment. When We say—“Go against evidence,” We mean—“Do not fall under the illusion of transitory events.” One must clearly distinguish the past from the future. Indeed, humanity suffers from this lack of discernment, whirling around in the illusions of effects. New Era Community, 77.

     You understand both the work of reality and the work of Maya. Spatial thought is reality, while what people generally pay attention to is Maya. Bear in mind that each of Us could grieve over the low level of those on Earth; but this would have no effect on the evolutionary plan because it is thought that creates. Images of Truth provide to each body, whether it be evolving or disintegrating, new possibilities for flight to higher spheres. Each Teacher of life bases His power only upon images of Truth, and creates the future by His thought, not by the consciousness of the crowd. Agni Yoga, 122.

     Maya of all ages knows when to touch the brain. From the depths of former experiences Maya evokes a fine thread of waverings, covers reality with evidence, and sweeps away the furrow of attainments. Multi-colored Maya, it is time to know thee, and to say with full authority: “Maya, begone!” New Era Community, 201.

     When falsehood and self-conceit apparently rule, then indeed there has arrived a great turning point in evolution. The whisperer of the night departs into darkness.
     The stronger the thunder, the more powerful the lightning. All reiterate—the New Age arrives in storm and lightning. For the lightning there are needed positive and negative energies. If Maya does not furnish the negative evidence, how then can flash forth the sword-blade of positive reality?
     We say briefly that never before on the planet has thought about cooperation been raised to the extent that it is at present. New Era Community, 258.

     Naturally, a mirage does not disclose reality, but is a reality in itself. Therefore it is correct to recognize the reality of Maya, even while knowing all its treacherous distortion.
     You who know the path, find the fire to attain the Goal! Agni Yoga, 288.

     Reality responds to intensity. When the striving of the energies aggregates around the seed, reality creates. In regard to illusion, this law has been forgotten. In reality Light engulfs darkness. The fusion of energies is consummated in reality. When cosmic creativeness intensifies reality, the entire power of attraction is applied. Reality is imbued with magnetic currents. The presence of striving affords a powerful flux of attraction. Only these processes give rise to the manifestation of life. Infinity II, 36.

     Reality and illusion will begin to appear to humanity as issuing from one source when we understand that the life-giving vessel is one. The Universe becomes devoid of all reason with the adoption of the concept of separation of the invisible world from the visible one. If we assume that our path is a casual one, with a void beyond, then our imagination is very poor indeed! Illusion is that which does not exist; and the concept of reality must be expanded. All lives and all propagates. Space carries your engenderings. Let us utilize the entire creative force of Space! Infinity I, 16.

     The belief that all is illusion results in curtailment of one’s self-expression. Cosmogony and astro-chemistry are as applicable as are geography and history. Could you but know what the Lords have seen, you would find understanding of the immensity of non-concatenated matter. Not the mystery of a temple, but the Sacrament of Infinity! Infinity I, 41.

     The freedom which so entices man is an illusion. In Infinity, there is freedom of choice, and herein is contained all beauty. Freedom of choice affirms man, and man determines for himself the world of effects. Thus is built the life of dependence. Numberless are the existences, and they are linked by manifestations of constructiveness. Infinity I, 193.

     Those records which fill space are not contained in a manifested structure. The mind of man has so far withdrawn itself from the higher records. Man is athirst with illusions and more and more draws away from reality. From all the great laws and principles, it is possible to point out distorted crumbs which have beclouded the consciousness. What, then, has remained of all the fiery Covenants? Reason did not subordinate the Universe, but did sink into the terror of its own engendered forms. Therefore, it is so difficult to unify the consciousnesses of the two Worlds. Fiery World III, 152.

     World events often occur, not because of actions themselves, but under the signs of the approach of the actions. People create a great deal under the sign of joy when as yet there is no apparent cause; and under the sign of terror or war when war has not yet broken out. Much is accomplished merely under the signs, therefore such reflexes acquire a most important significance for the alteration of life. Many examples of this can be cited. What is the need of war itself with all its disasters, if a single mirage can intensify energy? Much is actually constructed under the impetus of a mirage. Maya can sometimes be a most powerful impellent. Aum, 125.

     The most obvious illustration of Maya and of reality is found in the heavenly bodies. Though such a body may have been destroyed thousands of years ago, its light is still seen on Earth. Who, then, can attempt to define the boundary between the existing and the visionary? We find similar examples also among earthly manifestations. Aum, 444.

     The seeming instantaneousness of many visions can be explained by the laws of the Subtle World, where physical time does not exist. The brevity of the visions is only illusory, for man's perceptions are limited by the physical plane, and for him the subtle images come and go quickly. But in the conditions of the Subtle World we enter into the mental spheres, and the events appear to unfold naturally. Thus one can increase his experience in the Subtle World and learn to understand the earthly illusion of instantaneousness. Supermundane I, 207.

     Urusvati knows that profound similarities underlie all the moral Teachings of the ages. And how else could it be? The Law is one. There may be details that vary according to local life, or differences of language, but the foundations are changeless. Of course, it should be understood that We refer to real foundations and not to imagined ones.
     For example, We say that the illusion of so-called peace is worse than actual war. People who are full of hatred may assure you that they live in peace, but they are liars. Such a lie is not easy to wash away; it continues to exist in the Subtle World. Supermundane II, 295.

     Urusvati knows that so-called loss of memory is an illusion. Memory, as such, cannot be lost, but there are three factors that affect it. First, if one is absorbed with past events, current events cannot be perceived. Second, strong external influences can obstruct the natural access to memory. Third, damage to the brain can cause dysfunction of the memory. But in all these examples the memory as such, and the center of the Chalice, remain unimpaired. Supermundane II, 313.

     Some people will argue that it is impossible to draw a clear line between reality and illusion, and it is true that only through straight-knowledge or the highest intuition can one discriminate between them. By refining one’s perception, reality may be seen in its true proportions, but a correct point of view must be obtained. For example, people may rejoice at the beginning and sorrow at the end of an undertaking, but looked at from another perspective it might elicit a quite different reaction, and they would rejoice at the end, while bearing good will toward a beginning that is fraught with dangers. Supermundane II, 393.