In early Vedic literature, Maya is a metaphysical power that makes the hidden apparent, the unreal appear as real, and gives a human form to the soul. In Vedanta philosophy, Maya is a state of mind, a mental perception that emerges from our everyday consciousness, and creates the illusion of truth and reality in that which does not exist.
Ignorance (avidya) and knowledge (vidya) are the two aspects of Maya – one leading to materialism, greed and caprice, the other based on spiritual values and helping to realize God. It is the aim of all spiritually inclined human beings to transcend this avidya and vidya, to raise the veil of Maya, of the illusion of the separation of the individual from the Brahman, and ultimately unite with the Absolute.
George William Russell, an Irish poet wrote a poem, The Veils of Maya
MOTHER, with whom our lives should be,
Not hatred keeps our lives apart:
Charmed by some lesser glow in thee,
Our hearts beat not within thy heart
Beauty, the face, the touch, the eyes,
Prophets of thee, allure our sight
From that unfathomed deep where lies
Thine ancient loveliness and light.
Self-found at last, the joy that springs
Being thyself, shall once again
Start thee upon the whirling rings
And through the pilgrimage of pain.
An American metallic band from Chicago, is called Veil of Maya. The band Cynic also used the poem's name as a song in their album, Focus. The word Maya is one of the most popular girl names in the U.S., probably because it carries with it the allure of Indian mysticism.