Here's the last of these three explorations of "Maya," inspired by this beautiful Logion:
"Yeshua said: If you bring forth that which is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you."
Logion 70, The Gospel of Thomas
Denial is ignorance, accepted as truth through the force of will. Our personal will, and our collective will.
Popular Media and Science justify and enforce this will, directing us away from the self examination that makes us face our collective truths, and psychically cornering us in the "The Way Things Are." They preoccupy us with good enough reasons for why things are like they are, why they have to be like they are. Much of Media and Science is created to diffuse truth and replace it with a designed objective, to sell an idea or product; turning the truth into an obstacle that needs to be suppressed, where it becomes, as stated in our Logion again: "That which will destroy you." We end up walking through a false world, looking for what's real. This is the Maya of Media and Science.
It may sound funny to call this Occultism, and to suggest that Media Operatives and Scientists are Occultists, but unfortunately, it works for a couple definitions of the word- in the sense of using supernatural or paranormal means- Media people know they are manipulating dark fears; and in the sense of it being only for the initiated- scientists and media people consort amongst one another to keep their stories straight. Scary secrets shared by a select few.
Popular Culture often harnesses the psychic energy of "that which would destroy you" as it's chief attraction. The Collective Ego is always on the lookout for something to prove that humans are not particularly Divine, that we don't measure up, and so there must be something that can fix it, something that can ameliorate our shortcomings. So Media constantly stimulates those hot buttons of judgement and comparison; Fear, and the pathology of self-enhancement, to get you to buy it:
My clothes are right. My Lifestyle is right. I have the right friends, the proper idols. My country is right. My religion is right. -If you don't keep in line with these artificial demands, you won't measure up, or deserve material reward and the acknowledgment of others, which in reality can do nothing to assure happiness or fulfillment. You're made to fear that you might not even deserve Love unless you've achieved some standard - and we all know the truth, that Love is the only thing that really assures happiness and fulfillment.
These fears are heightened and kept malleable by the ever-increasing exposure to explicit violence, explicit selfishness, and explicit narcissism, without which, there would be practically nothing on television; or increasingly, at the movies, or on the radio either. In television's earlier years, human foibles were pointed out, often as a lesson. News programming reported events fairly objectively. Now media exploits human faults and fears, in all formats.
Television and film can be watched very selectively to avoid these base, destructive energies; and the internet allows for content choice, but don't forget the greatest selectivity of all: don't take part in it. And if you must, don't invest yourself in it spiritually.
Remember what Marshall McLuhan said: "The medium is the message." If you are constantly carrying, sitting in front of, looking at, a device that keeps you constantly attached to a false world, it will be impossible to live an authentic life. If the forms of input you receive are superficial and fragmented and designed by people who don't have your best interests at heart, your life will be the same. Attachment to current media results in collapsing consciousness.
In a generally (though not always) less intentional way, Science does the same thing by manipulating the agnosticism of the seeker. It's kind of like a religion whose dogma is always changing. It's a religion of logic, of data, of "empirical" observation, based solely on what our current senses and devices permit us to perceive and calculate. In the past, these means were limited, but Science was still very sure of itself, and it's description of the world. As means of observation improve, the world and being itself changes - according to Science.
Now, as evolving consciousness allows perception beyond our five senses (and is verified scientifically), and technology enables us to observe more and more of our (formerly invisible) nature of being, Science begins to resemble a dogma catching up to a tale that Mysticism has been telling for a long, long time. And here's how that tale ends: Everything is connected and interdependent; and, if we aren't willing to investigate the truth behind our being, and the motivations that suppress that truth, then "That will destroy us."
There is a form of Maya that can free us from the delusional limitations of the other (scary) three: We can switch to a Maya of inner experience and collective ecological sanity...The Maya of Nature. Turn off your mind, open your heart and your senses, and the truth will rise up out of the ruins of our false, Egoic structures.
The Universe is an awesome and beautiful mystery, activated by our consciousness. If we bring forth that Universe that is within us, that we all share, then what we bring forth will save us.