I am from coastal India, used to live right next to the sea but now I live in the Himalaya, I look outside the window now and I see oak forests. Here people speak Hindi and the word that they use for their mother is ‘maa’. Having learnt Sanskrit since I was a child, ‘maa’ for me is negation, ‘no’. ‘Maa kuru’ is ‘do not do it’. ‘Maa gaccha’ is ‘do not go’. It sounds very strange to hear children addressing their mothers ‘maa’. Why would an entire population call their mothers ‘No’? I asked a local pandit and he said ‘we call the Devi maa so the mother is maa’ or something quite confusing, he was not sure himself.
All languages are derived from Sanskrit. Devbhasha Sanskritam is in-built, its sounds and the way its letters are written are created by the perfect movement of pran/vital energy/kundalini along the Brahamnadi around the energy vertices/Chakra of your body. To those who can see, it is so visible, for those who cannot see it yet, best try to see your aura as the beginning step.
In Sanskrit, the mother is called Mata.
- ‘Ma’ sound means the act of Creation, creating Illusions, hiding something and also the knowledge related to the Hidden.
- ‘Aa’ means the one who directs, heals, removes sorrow etc linked to Ma.
- ‘Ta’ means the depths of hidden darkness, that which is not illuminated as yet and the strength and power of flowing energy.
- ‘Aa’ is again the one who directs, heals, removes sorrow etc now linked to Ta.
So a mother/mata in Sanskrit means so much more, which cannot be fully described. But the terrible intensity of Maa is tempered by the Taa sound. The intensity of ‘maa’ is in fact kept hidden by the ‘taa’ sound. Thus for the human mother, Mata is better.
Now ‘Maa’ is actually a name for the Devi. She hides, creates illusions and later grants its knowledge too. It is mentioned in the Shri Sukta, shlok/verse 3, one of the attributes of Devi is ‘Maa’. (Laxmi tantra has a very extensive chapter on Shri Sukta.) Devi is the energy of the Ultimate Consciousness/Parabrahma which is used to create the Universes. We all are the Ultimate ourselves, temporarily here to enjoy the fun-fair of Creation. This Devi/Illumination, energy is considered feminine as it creates, the cosmic mother. She has used the Maa attribute of Herself to conceal the true nature of every soul/Jivatma here. The energy of Maa is negation, and it negates our true nature, temporarily. She is Maa in all possible ways,
- मिमी – The action of formation or creation using precise measures.
- मीया – The act where Creation is fixed
- मिति – The one who pervades everything. Everything that we see is produced from Her, the creative power of the Ultimate.
Now when you are done playing and want to remember your reality, re-experience yourself, what happens? The power of Creation, Devi, uses her attribute of negation, ‘Maa’, now to negate the bindings of karma and her own initial binding of Kundalini to release the Jivatma. Thus you realise your true self. Here is two negations making a positive.
The energy of the sound Maa is so vast and indescribable, it was used to make you forget your true nature. Now when you start your spiritual practice and want to realise yourself again, Maa then negates your human existence, it disconnects you from the manifested. (Addressing the human mother as ‘maa’, though very prevalent in North India, is not a good idea from the energy of the sound/intention point of view.)
‘Om Maayai namah’ is a mantra from the Shri sukta which grants all that you desire.
Maa is Devi, magnificent in Her power of Negation.