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Divine and Mundane Ignorance

[…] Maya’s universes, all consisting of her material, are under the thumb of the laws of time and space, strictly supervised by the biological, physical and logical laws, under which the human soul feels quite at home. All the individual atma-s, however, who are present in all these universes, in everything that lives and has its own power and movement, are victims of the great delusion, enchanted by the powerful Maya. As a consequence of the atma’s aversion to God Maya makes the atma believe that he is the mind, the individual soul, the body etc., and makes the individual soul believe that it is the actual atma [the self], succumbing to the delusion of considering itself eternal and immortal.
This is the greatest delusion, but also the only one. Everything that God’s Own potency of [true] knowledge in the form of direct, serving, true love experiences, perceives and understands is infinitely more real than the world of time and space that the individual soul, consisting of sheer delusion, experiences. […]
Where God and His Own potency of knowledge are and work, where Krishna and His Own are present, delusion, fantasy and deception are fully excluded; here on earth or in Goloka, where body, soul, emotions, heart, everything fully consists of God’s Own potency of [pure] knowledge and love. Their [cit-]bodies and forms consist of His potency of [pure] knowledge and love. Through this potency they serve, love and dedicate themselves, without ever coming to an ultimate goal, because God is infinite, and so is His potency.
The godless atma receives a mental and a physical covering, which are perishable, but real. God’s eternal companions in Vraja do not have such coverings. The godless atma believes he is the coverings and the coverings believe they are the atma. Until the atma has discarded these coverings and received a body etc. consisting of cit-shakti, he cannot enter God’s realm. God’s eternal companion in the eternal lila – when it takes place on earth – has an eternal body and mind that consist of God’s Own shakti, and consequently he can carry God in his arms, touch Him, embrace Him and breast-feed Him.
In order to intensify this lila, now when it becomes visible on earth, God’s eternal companion very often believes – owing to particularly intense power of knowledge and love – that his body is a body of flesh and blood, that he is a mere human being, subjected to the laws of the world. Krishna’s eternally beloved believe that they are married to someone else etc., without actually being so. This makes the loving service stronger, more complex and more wonderful, creating obstacles that must be overcome within God’s realm.
The obstacles that Maya creates, on the other hand, which keep the atma away from God’s realm and self-knowledge – as long as he does not want to use the means God offers him in the Word Revelation, the means to get rid of his delusion – are outside of God’s realm, i.e. where God’s realm does not make its presence manifest and perceived.
God’s eternal companion believes he has a body of flesh and blood, and he believes so, because this belief is a form of service. The atma in a human being, who is under the delusion of Maya, believes he is a man of flesh and blood, and this belief is an expression of greatest aversion to God, a result of being averse to seva, not wanting to serve, but wanting to experience and enjoy. […]
(Svami Sadananda Dasa, Corrections, page 200–201)