What Is the Difference Between Maya and Satan?


What is the difference between Maya and Satan?

—Francis, USA


Dear Francis,

There isn’t any difference between Maya and Satan! It’s just that Satan is the personified form of the outflowing force of AUM which consciously seeks to perpetuate itself separate from God. The entire cosmos is a manifestation of consciousness. In order that the drama take place, there needs to be a dynamic tension between the hero and the villain; between the play of opposites, for when the “motion ceases, God begins” (to quote Paramhansa Yogananda).

God has empowered the creation with his own impulse to create. To do so is the nature of Bliss: to expand, to share, to become “made manifest.” But the drama would end shortly unless there is some other impulse to perpetuate it. Maya cloaks the Spirit with an infinite variety of forms and endows those forms with the impulse to procreate and enjoy existence in those forms and as those forms, thus losing touch with the original and indwelling Spirit.

Only through conscious intention, sparked by an intuitive remembrance and reawakening can the indwelling Spirit, confused and identified with its form(s), begin the journey home to Self in God.

God while manifesting all things is not those things, just as a playwright in writing the part of the villain (indeed all the characters) is not villainous himself. The difference is that, unlike actors following a prewritten script, the immanent spirit in creation, cloaked and identified with form, is also endowed with reason, free will, and self-initiative. We do not achieve freedom in God by accident but by intention.

We must work out the karma of our past actions. But we can accelerate the process by ego transcendence. The karma may remain but increasingly it cannot touch us to the extent we are “not there”!

Well, a big subject and I’d best “call it a day.”

Blessings to you,
Nayaswami Hriman