Advaita Vedanta Maya Veil of Illusion

Query: Advaita Vedanta Maya veil of illusion... As per Advaita Vedanta what is Maya (veil of illusion)?

Kaivalya Jnani:
For understanding the concept of Advaita Vedanta... we need understanding the following-

The big bang theory
The concept of God Almighty
The evolution of Cosmos

If I say the whole Cosmos exists from the beginning of time... I am partly correct! If I say the Cosmos does have a beginning... I am fully correct! How is it possible that Cosmos has a beginning and also exists from times immemorial!

This analogy of Cosmos existing from times immemorial stems from the fact that considering Cosmos does have a boundary... then what beyond! If we truly analyze the working of the Cosmos we would reach a conclusion that Cosmos does not seem to have a boundary? If it does... then what beyond!

As one interpreter rightly said, if God is the Creator of the Cosmos... then who is the Creator of God Almighty!

If we presume the Cosmos does not have a boundary and is endless... then the whole existence itself gets negated. This definitely proves the whole Cosmos exists in the imagination of God Almighty. The existence of God Almighty alone seems to be the only truth! A boundary less Cosmos simply could not exist... and if there is a boundary... then what beyond?

This analogy led to the concept of Advaita Vedanta... except God Almighty nothing exists in the whole of Cosmos. If we visualize the Cosmos... the world as we see it... all has to be the work of Maya (veil of illusion). The moment after gaining enlightenment (kaivalya jnana) when one penetrates the veil of illusion... the real truth of life unfolds!

Having realized God in 1993... How clearly I can visualize the whole Cosmos with and without a boundary! Both statements in fact are correct... but to put the whole thing in the framework of words is simply not possible!

Now let us understand the concept of God Almighty! Let us assume a moment of time when the collapse of the entire Cosmos... the previous Cosmos is about to occur! Termed Pralaya in Hinduism... the collapse of the entire Cosmos results in the whole Cosmos reducing to the size of half a thumb! Apart from this volume of half a thumb... nothing else exists in the whole Cosmos after the complete Pralaya... collapse of the Cosmos has occurred!

Now what is this half a thumb... the volume of half a thumb! Bhagavad Gita... the most sacred Scripture of Hinduism is absolutely clear on this point! This half a thumb... the cluster of all purified souls atmans in the Cosmos is what we know as God Almighty! In other words... the definition of God Almighty is... the combined power of all purified souls atmans in the Cosmos at a given moment of time!

This small volume... containing the gigantic Cosmos (devoid of all impurities)... God Almighty himself... Unable to contain itself for long in its pristine prime pure state... again explodes with a big bang... resulting in the formation of a new cosmos... a new journey of life! Does this mean God Almighty explodes himself to create the whole Cosmos... yes, the truth is so!

This proves for sure... there is God Almighty... the cluster of all purified souls atmans that exist in the Cosmos! This also proves... in whatever stage of life a soul atman be... every single soul atman at the time of Pralaya... the collapse of the Cosmos... the dissolution of the Cosmos... reaches the last leg of cosmic life... the 8.4 millionth manifestation!

Does it mean every single soul atman gets liberated... every single soul atman in whatever stages of manifestation it may be... reaches the last leg of cosmic life... the stage of salvation moksha! Having liberated themselves from the cycle of birth and death... the chain of manifestations... the pure souls' atmans collectively form the volume of half a thumb!

Does this mean all souls' atmans in the entire Cosmos in their prime pristine original form occupy the volume of half a thumb... yes; it is a fact of life! Devoid of all impurities within every soul atman... what remains in the Cosmos at the time of Pralaya... dissolution of the Cosmos is... the cluster of all purified souls atmans only!

This primordial energy... the size of half a thumb... we know as God Almighty explodes with a big bang causing the formation of a cosmos... a new cosmos altogether! This effectively proves God Almighty is the Creator of all things cosmic. With the limited power of the senses... it is beyond comprehension of human beings to imagine the size of Cosmos reducing to half a thumb... it is only as an enlightened being... the entire structure of the Cosmos becomes clear!

Imagine for a second... when the whole Cosmos is the size of half a thumb... what happens to the balance space in the Cosmos? This fact gives rise to the concept of Maya (veil of illusion)... meaning the whole Cosmos exists only as a thought of God... similar as a microbe... a bacteria within the human body can never understand the concept of salvation moksha?

Every single microbe... bacteria is a living organism... it has a soul atman within! Every single microbe... bacteria would pass through a chain of 8.4 million manifestations... an earthly life cycle of 96.4 million earthly years... before the soul atman within liberates from the cycle of birth and death forever!

Every single soul atman reaches the stage of human life after crossing through 7.3 million manifestations in the insect, plant and animal form! In the human form itself we have 1.1 million manifestations to reach the stage of enlightenment (kaivalya jnana) and finally salvation (moksha).

Apart from the big bang theory, the concept of God Almighty and the theory of creation... we also need to understand how the Cosmos finally evolves! Here the role of karma comes into play. It is through the complex process of karma every soul atman gradually evolves further until it reaches the human form... rather manifests the human form!

The absolute truth of life is... we are a soul atman on its cosmic journey of 8.4 million manifestations! With the occurrence of the big bang... all purified souls atmans because of the massive explosion hurtle down their cosmic journey at unimaginable speeds. As the rolling ball gathers moss... these hurtling souls' atmans in their cosmic sojourn gather impurities.

To cleanse themselves of the dross impurities within... every soul atman manifests a total of 8.4 million manifestations... an earthly life cycle of 96.4 million years before it reaches the stage of liberation... salvation... moksha! With the formation of a new cosmos... with passage of time as life supporting planets like Mother Earth develop... the souls atmans manifest bodies after another... and start life in the cosmic system!

Similar as one K. G. of metal within hundred K. G. of metal ore cannot separate itself of its own... and requires the requisite mining machinery and processes to separate 99 KG of impurities... the soul atman also requires manifesting a series of 8.4 million bodies to work out its karma... remove the dross impurities within!

Whether karma is illusion... or the cycle of birth and death is illusion... one needs introspecting! Only the concept of Cosmos is illusion... rest all exists as we see and feel it through our senses. Seen from the senses point of view... things appear solid by nature. Truth is exactly opposite. Everything in the Cosmos is gaseous formation. Broken down to the basic building block of the Cosmos... the whole Cosmos is made up of only atoms and molecules.

Perceived from the senses point of view a human being appears solid. From the cosmic point of view a human being is but a cluster of atoms and molecules!

Essay by: Kaivalya Jnani ... One who realized self in his life time! Send your query!

A to Z of Advaita Vedanta explained in words everyone can easily understand and fathom. More on maya can be found at :Advaita Vedanta  ... Neeru J. - 5th June 2010.

Full text of query: I had some questions on Advaita Philosophy. Was wondering if you could shred some light on them? I happened to read your article on Karma Sutra and in that you have talked about ideas of Karma. Below are some of my questions

1. According to Advaita everything is Maaya( illusion). Then in that case is Karma also Illusion. Is cycle of Birth and death also illusion.

2. What happens after viel/covering is lifted. What happens when one realizes maaya or illusion.
What is moksha. One doesn't need to be born again. What does that mean for soul. What happens to its existence ?

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