Yogamaya and Mahamaya

Radha-Krishna-with-Gopis

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This morning I was reading again from the 4th chapter of the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Adi-lila, wherin Srila Prabhupada was describing the yogamaya potency…

…Yogamāyā is the name of the internal potency that makes the Lord forget Himself and become an object of love for His pure devotee in different transcendental mellows. This yogamāyā potency creates a spiritual sentiment in the minds of the damsels of Vraja by which they think of Lord Kṛṣṇa as their paramour.

I thought it would be interesting do do a post on the difference between yogamaya and mahamaya, and define the word yogamaya.

Yogamaya means the mercy of the Supreme Lord which connects a devotee in the transcendental loving service of the Lord, and mahamaya means the external potency of the Lord which puts a conditioned soul into illusion that he will be happy by material adjustment. (Letter to Aniruddha Los Angeles 14 November, 1968)

Yogamāyā means… Here, this is also Kṛṣṇa’s exhibition of māyā, but it is temporary. In the another, spiritual world, that is also exhibition of Kṛṣṇa’s māyā, but it is permanent. Here is a perverted reflection, we say. (Lecture on SB 2.9.2 Melbourne, April 4, 1972)

Yogamāyā means that which connects you. Yogamāyā, the original yogamāyā, is Kṛṣṇa’s internal potency. That is Rādhārāṇī. (from Lecture Seattle, October 18, 1968)

Yogamāyā means forgetfulness. (Lecture on SB 3.25.13 — Bombay, November 13, 1974)

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The Spell of Illusion (Maya)

The sense of a separated existence from Kṛṣṇa is called māyā (-not, -this).

People in general, especially in this age of Kali, are enamored by the external energy of Kṛṣṇa, and they wrongly think that by advancement of material comforts every man will be happy. They have no knowledge that the material or external nature is very strong, for everyone is strongly bound by the stringent laws of material nature. A living entity is happily the part and parcel of the Lord, and thus his natural function is to render immediate service to the Lord. By the spell of illusion one tries to be happy by serving his personal sense gratification in different forms which will never make him happy. Instead of satisfying his own personal material senses, he has to satisfy the senses of the Lord. That is the highest perfection of life. The Lord wants this, and He demands it. One has to understand this central point of Bhagavad-gītā. Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is teaching the whole world this central point, and because we are not polluting the theme of Bhagavad-gītā As It Is, anyone seriously interested in deriving benefit by studying the Bhagavad-gītā must take help from the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement for practical understanding of Bhagavad-gītā under the direct guidance of the Lord. We hope, therefore, that people will derive the greatest benefit by studying Bhagavad-gītā As It Is as we have presented it here, and if even one man becomes a pure devotee of the Lord we shall consider our attempt a success.

The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is essential in human society, for it offers the highest perfection of life. How this is so is explained fully in the Bhagavad-gītā. Unfortunately, mundane wranglers have taken advantage of Bhagavad-gītā to push forward their demonic propensities and mislead people regarding right understanding of the simple principles of life. Everyone should know how God or Kṛṣṇa is great, and everyone should know the factual position of the living entities. Everyone should know that a living entity is eternally a servant and that unless one serves Kṛṣṇa one has to serve illusion in different varieties of the three modes of material nature, and thus perpetually one has to wander within the cycle of birth and death; even the so-called liberated Māyāvādī speculator has to undergo this process. This knowledge constitutes a great science, and each and every living being has to hear it for his own interest. (From the preface to the Bhagavad-gita As It Is)

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