“Maayaa is the lack of discernment of the principles beginning with Kalaa.”
“The principles (that obscure the individual soul) form a group that ranges from Kalaa to Earth. (They are called) “principles” tattva because the entire universe is pervaded by them. Kalaa is said to be (the individual soul’s) limited power of action.” (Aphorisms of Shiva. Trans. Mark Dyczkowsky. 3/3)
“The more consciousness is freed from the impurity (mala) the more the light of the self is revealed.” (p. 377, Kashmir Shaivism)
“He who is deprived of his power by the forces of obscuration (kala), and a victim of the powers arising from the mass of sounds (shabdarashi) is called a fettered soul.” (Stanzas 45)
Three kinds of mala (defilements):
1. Anava mala: (mula mala – root mala) arises as consciousness descends to sadashiva (this is perhaps where we are a thought in our parents mind; duality is just recognizable, but we are not yet separated from non-duality) level as a mantra-maheshvara; as the lord puts limits on himself (self-contraction) which occurs at the very first moment of the manifestation of the universe. (Sun)
a) For those whose experience is above the mayatttva (pure beings) which includes experients from mantra-maheshvara to vijnankalas. Knowledge of the divine remains intact, but experients do not have freedom of action.
b) Freedom of action is intact, but experients do not recognize their divine awareness. This is said to be the fate of everyone who experiences life as individuals from prakriti down (parlayakalas and sakalas (the human experience/human condition)).
2. Mayiya mala: Maya (Moon) and the five kanchukas (Mars, Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn). Gives gross and subtle bodies to the soul. Brings about the sense of duality. Robs us of all sense of divinity and makes us oblivious to our real nature.
The five Kanchukas: 1. Kalaa: limits power (Sun, Mars), 2. vidya: limits knowledge (Jupiter, Mercury), 3. Raga: limits fullness (Moon, Venus), 4. Kaala: experience of time and change (Moon, Saturn) , 5. Niyati: experience of cause and effect (Saturn, Mars) .
3. Karma Mala: provides us with our physical body which is essentially a collective of residual impressions (past karmas). Once karma mala defiles the monade, embodied individuals known as sakals (humans) are created. Karma is the imprint made in the mind due to action motivated out of attachment. (Rahu/Ketu)
The jiva (limited soul, Sun) is limiting himself thru maya (moon) and the five kanchukas (planets). The Malas are due to the kanchukas and two types of ignorance (ajnana):
- Paurusha ajnana (Ketu): the innate ignorance regarding the truth of the self.
- Bauddha ajnana (rahu): ignorance of the buddhi. Considers the subtle body and the gross body as the self on account of ashuddha vikalpas (creating ideas, thought constructs; irrational or psychological thought)
Replacing this ignorance (ajnana) with knowledge (jnana) is the main prescription of Shaivism.