Maya

Maya is the Hindu god of illusion, and is who you run into when you, say, stab your knee against a log: log and knee are both Maya. Or, say, when you win the lottery, same thing: the lottery, the win, your jubilation all Maya.

There really is nothing here, but Maya.

Herman Hesse, in his Magister Ludi masterpiece (also called the Glass Bead Game) writes an amazing illustration of Maya in his “Indian Life” which is one of the three “Lives” that Magister Ludi had to write in the novel. When I think of Maya today, I think of Herman Hesse’s Indian Life.

I also think of Robin Williamson of The Incredible String Band who wrote my favorite Maya song, aptly entitled, yes, you guessed it: “Maya.”

This is my take on this world of illusion.

The Words:

It's been a long, long time
It’s been a hard and arduous climb
scaling this land
the sleight of a hand
that we still wonder
how to understand

It's been a dark, dark night
beneath a mostly sensual light
a harbor supreme
to creatures that seem
not to care
nor even dare to dream

The cry that we must die
or compromise
has risen high above us all
on winds that call
for us to memorize
idolize, synchronize
with every point of view

It's been a strange, strange day
It’s been a dance with mirrors at play
earth, sky and sea
so we agree
a cage to those
who never chose to see

The sigh that we must die
or compromise
has found a way among us all
on tongues that call
for us to memorize
idolize, synchronize
dramatize:

a gentle rain a summer’s morrow
a timid kiss
a lover’s first embrace
an always mist of sorrow
poised to kill
whatever thrill
we chase

an always dream to then conceal
a fatal pain
a lover’s last betrayal
a death so cruel and real
we curse and hate
the very fate
we hail

Dancing with mirrors
it's true
but ‘neath the dance
are they still there with you

It takes a pure, pure heart
to pry these integral shadows apart
stillness of view
ever anew
to trace and see
this tragedy atrue

The lie that we must die
or compromise
has cast a pall upon us all
a constant call
for us to memorize
idolize, synchronize
with every tale untrue

Ulf Wolf
April 1992/June 2014
Copyright © 2014 by Wolfstuff