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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: maya


Maya: Sanskrit for “illusion.” In spiritual traditions it is sometimes mistakenly used to mean that the physical world is an illusion. Traditionally, however, it simply means that since everything we know about the world comes through our senses, we can misinterpret reality. Therefore, it is only our interpretation of the world that is an illusion. For example, both ancient mysticism and modern science acknowledge that everything is made of vibration. However, we see the physical world as solid and not vibration. Because we can become enveloped and entangled in the illusion of reality, we can be led away from the true, inner reality of the universe. Sometimes, this process is described as the goddess Maya who casts her spell of illusion upon us.


Review of the Mayan Tarot
Summary: The Mayan Tarot is a doorway into another world, into a culture, into the past. Just like any lost civilization, this one gives teasing glimpses of what might have been and invites discovery. By losing oneself in the art, by letting ...
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Vodou - An African Shamanic Tradition
At first sight, shamanism and Vodou - what Hollywood has introduced into the popular imagination as "voodoo" - seem to have little in common. The former seems based on peaceful co-existence with nature and the elements, while the latter, in so far ...
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Review of the Celtic Tarot
Summary: Beautiful deck made in the Rider-Waite-Smith pattern, but with a unique Major Arcana and a focus on Celtic myth and legend. Perfect for Celtic Wiccans and all Pagans drawn to Celtic lore. Beside being good for doing divination (especially ...
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Review of the Tarot of the Silicon Dawn
Summary:  The Tarot of the Silicon Dawn stretches the very bounds of Tarot by swapping elemental associations, adding entire suits (but of only a few cards), mixing Roman and Arabic numerals with the Majors, adding strangely named new Major ...
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Universal Goddess Tarot Review
Summary: Discover your own wisdom and beauty in this intriguing and layered tribute to goddesses from around the world and throughout time. Maria Caratti journeyed through the Tarot and visited with goddesses to create a deck that reveals both with ...
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Santería is an Afro-Caribbean religion that comes to us from Cuba and to this day it is practiced worldwide. Its original form, called Ifa, is an ancient Yoruba religion that comes from West-Africa and is declared by UNESCO as one of the ...
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While most people are probably familiar with legendary creatures such as Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, the Chupacabra, and Jersey Devil, there is a myriad of weird beasts that are less known, but equally as elusive. What is surprising is that there are accounts of modern encounters with these enigmatic monsters on record, indicating that there... read this article
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