Illusion, deception, biggest of illusions

An illusory, transient energy, because it is devoid of state of being, emanating from Shiva and through which the world of forms is manifested. Therefore, the entire creation is also denoted by the word Maya.

The word «Maya» serves to denote the obscuring power of nature, which creates a sense of separation. As such, it makes the Universal Consciousness, which is a unity, perceived as spirituality and plurality. Maya is defined as a limiting principle that reduces the universal power of consciousness and generates states of limited experience. It divides and dispels the divine unity and evokes mind and matter.

Also has a positive meaning – Maya as Goddess.