Hare Krishna Friends,
Under the influence of the three gunas, the soul is
(1) misled by matter, and
(2) subsequently entangled and entrapped.
This tendency is termed maya (illusion).
Under maya's influence, the atman, (the soul) mistakenly identifies with the body. He accepts such thoughts as "I am white and I am a man," or "This is my house, my country, and my religion." Thus the illusioned soul identifies with the temporary body and everything connected to it, such as race, gender, family, nation, bank balance, and sectarian religion. Under this sense of false-ego (false-identity) the soul aspires to control and enjoy matter. However, in so doing he continuously serves lust, greed, and anger. In frustration he often redoubles his efforts and, compounding mistake upon mistake, only falls deeper into illusion
Courtesy: "Heart of Hinduism" is Copyright: ISKCON Educational Services, 2004