According to Advaita Vedanta, we i.e. Jivas are all Brahman in reality but are under Maya and Avidya. I want to know how Maya and Avidya came into Brahman?

P.S. I am aware that Maya has no beginning.


2 Answers 2


Simply because you have created Maya and avidya for yourself and dropped down to the plane of dual perception. It is due to this duality that such a question has arisen. Remove it and experience non duality—the supreme reality, the highest sense of perception.

  • 1
    Good answer, but you should technically cite sources, that is the rule in this forum. Please try to acquire links which provide the text which you've used to conclude this theory. Welcome to HSE.
    – Just_Do_It
    Commented Sep 5, 2018 at 17:39
  • Ok. I will if I get a source suggesting my entire idea. But usually I type concise answers whose contents may be from 2 or more sources Commented Sep 5, 2018 at 17:45
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    No issues, you can cite multiple sources.
    – Just_Do_It
    Commented Sep 5, 2018 at 17:53
  • Brahman has no Vidya or avidya. It is beyond them. Brahman has not stooped down to dual perception. It is with the influence of Manas, buddhi, chitta and ahamkara that it confuses one for many. It’s real nature remains the same. And the second point, yes as long as there is body there must be duality, at least in diminished amount as it is bound by time, space and causation. How ever the mental perception is highly evolved. Commented Sep 6, 2018 at 18:08

I can tell about the Philosophy but don't ask me about any Sanskrit source.

In the Tantra traditions, Goddess Shakti is Mahamaya. She is the feminine essence of the Purusha/Prakriti duality and she is the one creating the illusions. These illusions are what creates something we call incentive structure in Economics. So, in Samsara, (which by the way means "Migration" because Time is also a manifest of Shakti) nothing is fixed. The different seasons forces people to grow different crops to survive,making people react to Nature to achieve "Artha". Circumstances are created such that there is no permanent peace or war and in times of crisis, the line between Dharma and Adharma blurs which calls for the learned men to theorize Dharma in the given context.

Put another way, if every one realized the ultimate truth of Brahman without having to do anything, the worth would not be appreciated and further even if it is realized without the effort, everybody could do it at birth and would be left with nothing to do in life henceforth. Society would become mechanical just like Marxist Communism akin to "sthiti" but the divine mother is "Shakti-sthiti vinashini" exactly because she does not let this happen.

Men who attain enlightenment eventually leave the Earth and a new crop of foolish individuals are born in their place. Maya thus gives a meaning to life as every individual must traverse his way to attain Enlightenment and know the Brahman, while those who achieve it now try to help others in achieving it.

There is another catch, that of communication. People especially those performing "Tapas" by definition cannot disturb the system by warning others of their action without bearing a cost. If he tells them, then he can't verify the trajectory of events that he had envisioned before warning and if he does not, he would have to bear the burden of not saving them when he could have. This is why a hermitage deep inside the forest surrounded by jivas one does not know or have any concern for is considered good for Tapasya and attaining Enlightenment.

Thus, to conclude, the maya is an essential part of the "Brahmanda" and Goddess Mahamaya a tangible manifestation of the Supreme Brahman. Hope this helps...

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    Good answer, but you should technically cite sources, that is the rule in this forum. Please try to acquire links which provide the verses which you've used to conclude this philosophy. Welcome to HSE.
    – user9072
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 7:40
  • Maya is a power within Brahman. Because it is a power inherent in Brahman and, thus, essentially none other than Brahman in the same way that the wave is nothing other than the ocean, Maya is beginningless. In conjunction with this issue, it is worth mentioning that unlike Brahman, Maya does have an end. Ignorance is removed, ended, eradicated by self-knowledge. That is to say that while Maya on a macrocosmic level does continue to influence the apparent reality throughout the millennia until the pralaya, the jiva’s avidya ends with the assimilation of the knowledge that I am whole.
    – user9072
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 7:43
  • Though Brahman is actionless due to its all-pervasive and perfectly-full-and-therefore-desireless nature, when pure awareness illumines or – to put it in personified terms – “wields” Maya, we call this “creative entity” – again employing personification – Ishwara. Hence anything under the creative label of Ishwara is influenced by Maya.
    – user9072
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 7:44
  • You should try resorting to Advaita philosophy to answer technical questions like these, because your particular answer is essentially your own understanding and interpretation. Of course you can include them, but please refrain from making the whole answer as such.
    – user9072
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 7:48
  • Hi, I am sorry but I did not cite sources because I have never been taught Sanskrit and most of the Sanskrit words are intranslatable to Western categories making English translations of them problematic. Whatever I wrote is from my reading of Philosophy,I did not include the Pralaya part which you wrote because it actually violates Vedanta epistemology in that none among us have had Pratyaksha praman of it and it is neither derivable from Anumana or Upamana and may fit only with Shabda or learned wisdom and people may not necessarily agree on what constitutes a learned elder in this case. Commented Mar 7, 2018 at 10:34

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