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Classical Hindu ThoughtAn Introduction$
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Arvind Sharma

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780195658712

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195658712.001.0001

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(p.109) Chapter XIV Māyā
Classical Hindu Thought

Arvind Sharma

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the concept of māyā. This term is the key to understanding the relationship between Brahman and the universe in which we live and breathe and have our existence. In referring to the world as māyā, classical Hindu thought is suggesting that ‘there is something tricky’ about the universe, whether it tricks us in terms of fact or value. For those who follow the path of devotion or prefer the theistic standpoint, māyā is that quality of the world which distracts us from God: ‘seductive in the attractiveness in which it presents the world, trapping us within it and leaving us with no desire to journey on’.

Keywords:   Brahman, Māyā, theistic standpoint, universe, classical Hindu thought, Hinduism

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