Māyā - its Power and how to how to Overcome it

Māyā acts and reacts upon the mind and through the mind which alone is responsible for the conception of the so-called world. It envelops the jiva in nescience.

The inscrutable power of māyā has the double function of:

  1. concealing the real nature of the Supreme Reality
  2. making it appear as something else

The power of māyā that conceals the real is called āvarana sakti and that which distorts our knowledge is viksepana sakti. Sankaradeva has referred to both these aspects of the power of māyā (in the Bhakti Ratnākara, eg).

Although the entire world is unreal, it appears as real due to your association with it. There is no end to the power of your māyā. You are the Supreme Soul with incomprehensible power.
[Madhavadeva, Rājasuya Kāvya]

Bhakti - the only means to cut through māyā

To overcome the barrier of māyā and the illusory effect it produces upon the mind, knowledge is necessary, not just any knowledge but only the knowledge born out of bhakti that will really arouse consciousness in the jiva. once this is done, the jiva attains liberation even while within the corporeal cage (jivan mukti).