Interview with Maha Devi Li Ra La

What inspired you to write the series 'Within The Ocean Of Eternal Love', and why are you calling it an epic grand saga?
In regard to what inspired me to write this story: I feel a deep affinity with the ocean and what I associate with it, namely expansion, freedom, purity, natural power, and a great variety of life forms, many of which are so exotic and colorful that they lie beyond our grasp of control and attempt to classify them. The deep underwater and what lies at the core of our Earth, also, fascinate me and lure me to uncover some of the hidden secrets I imagine at the bottom of the very planet we live on. This, combined with the legendary appeal of the Greek Gods and Goddesses, felt like a rich and unfathomable source of inspiration and imagination capable of enabling me to write and weave a story so magnificent and spiritually enlightening that I can imagine it becoming one of the classics of human literature at some point in time.

I regard my story as an epic grand saga because it touches and draws on mythological figures and ancient spiritual knowledge systems, as well as on archetypical principles that greatly enhance the story. My readers have commented that my writing feels quite elevating and has a poetic flow to it. Also, like most epic tales, the story centers around a couple of heroes whose great challenges and achievements towards their heavenly goal serve as an inspiration for others to aspire as well. I call it a grand saga because it will comprise several books, each detailing phases and stages of the journeys of two lovers from different realms, an underwater prince and a Magna Graecian princess, who, along with their friends and entourage, undertake a quest of epic proportions as they leave their parental kingdoms, on land and underwater, to travel to extreme locations of our planet, namely he to the core of the earth, and she to the mountains of the Greek Gods on Mount Olympos. The ultimate goal of the lovers is Heaven, where souls of different species can unite and live according to their innate reality, a love-filled life shared with one’s true soulmate and eternal love partner. Many big challenges await along the way, and it takes the courageous heart of a hero to face and overcome them, drawing on inner resources that allow overall transformation and growth of character and personality to take place.
What makes your story unique?
Unlike many other legends and stories that depict the Greek Gods as moody and volatile, imperfect personalities, I like to restore an air of ultimate goodness back to them. This way, Poseidon might look evil and full of hatred towards humanity, but once you meet him up close in my story, it becomes clear that he not only has good reasons for his cruel seeming actions but also harbors ultimately good intentions towards humanity. Once the reasoning of the Gods is understood, they magically seem to become man’s best friends. Because what any God — or superbeing — really is is an instrument of the laws of nature that teaches humans the karmic lessons they would rather ignore and avoid to comprehend. This truth ultimately restores trust in the Divine workings, since Gods and Goddesses are all just working for the best of all life forms and creation, rather than being utterly selfish and egocentric in their intentions and actions. Instead of being irrational punishers, the Gods and Goddesses in my story are catalysts for enlightenment.

Furthermore, even though the story incorporates beings from the fairy, elf, and mer-people realms, it still is a story written for spiritually interested adults who have preserved an open mind as to the existence of beings from various deva kingdoms. Besides the deep love between the two main protagonists, who — stemming from two different life habitats — undertake a deeply inspiring soul journey in order to unite in the Heavens and bring their newfound spiritual authority and worldly competence back to the governance of their united kingdoms, this extraordinary transformational journey is also supported and enlightened by powerful knowledge from spiritual master souls, who want to see the protagonists achieve their lofty goals. My keen interest in spiritual knowledge has thus found a great, highly entertaining outlet to present powerful spiritual concepts to the reader.
You have a way of conjuring sensual impressions from higher dimensional levels of existence that are quite refreshing and awareness expanding. Are you tapping into some higher awareness when you write?
Yes, always. It comes quite naturally to me to see and describe subtle, refined states of existence and awareness. I thrive in it and like to express these impressions in my books and music. [Maha Devi Li Ra La’s CD ‘Within Myself’ can be bought on Amazon and CD Baby, and can be listened to on many online radios, including Spotify.]

One unique trait of this series is that even though ignorance and evil stand in the way of ultimate happiness and fulfillment, the main focus of my writing is on the uplifting and positive qualities of the human heart and mind, which are the main agents of transformation and human progress. A thus purified soul then becomes the creator of his own destiny, able to live a life according to the Divine Will that foresees and provides for the best of all of life. I hope to be able to explain to my readers what prerequisites are necessary to develop in order to create paradise in the Here and Now.

Another unique characteristic of the story is the inclusion and description of multidimensional levels of existence, which the protagonists learn to perceive and traverse as part of their soul liberation process. Their realization is that mercy and harmony synchronize events and open the gates to higher dimensions of greater fulfillment and support. The gained insights and realizations are set against the background of the many existing negativities of our world and, as such, stand out as workable solutions to many of our dead-end situations and problems.
As the preface of your books states, the story takes place around 270 B.C.. What attracted you to write about this particular time period of our world’s history?
The ancient Greek history has always been appealing to me. It was clear to me that I wanted to write an epic the likes of which have survived many centuries because of their universal and timeless messages and larger-than-life characters. The Greek Gods, also, are a great resource to lend some supernatural characters and knowledge to enrich the storyline and lift it to an epic level.

The story unfolds throughout the last years of the Magna Graecian Empire in what is nowadays the South of Italy. It is a particularly interesting time period to research and write a story about, since it was the Roman Empire that extinguished the Greek Hellenistic culture and tradition from Magna Graecia around that time. My story takes place during this time of struggle when the Greek colonies tried to resist the usurping power of Rome, a story that depicts the loss of identity and pride of a once glorious empire as it gets wiped out by one of the most unstoppable, imperialistic forces of our history. Many of the described problems and hardships caused by a victimizing and overbearing world power are based on real historical events of this period and leave an aftertaste of uncanny similarities with some of our current world situations.

I also wanted to draw on mythologies and mysteries of the ancient past, involving characters like the Titan Gods, Oceanic Gods, and the beauty I imagine to have existed among the once existing mer-worlds.
There might be those critics who consider the union of a mer-being and a human as objectionable. What do you think?
There is also a reason why fairytales like ‘The Little Mermaid’ by Hans Christian Andersen have such a widespread appeal that several different film versions have been created, each trying to do justice to the enchanting story that has critics wondering as to the true intentions and moral of the story.

According to Hans Christian Andersen’s story, the little mermaid is willing to sacrifice her life to save the life of the prince she loves. Her original desire was for the both of them to become immortal and be accepted into the spiritual sphere where the ‘daughters of the air’ reside. The prince, however, marries another princess, and with that, the little mermaid’s love does not find its earthly happy end, but rather a higher dimensional happy end. Because, as it turns out, the little mermaid turns into a luminous being, who, after continuing to serve mankind for another 300 years selflessly, will have earned her immortal soul and will be granted access to the Kingdom of God.

But rather than for just one of my protagonists to find her happy ending, I intend to have both pursue the goal of unification in the Heavens, and for both to earn their immortal souls. Many spiritual knowledge systems equate immortality with the ability to balance the male and female energies out to such a degree that one experiences one’s own androgynous nature. In the same way, I believe that racial or species-based differences find their common ground on higher levels of existence. We all are created in the image of God; we all are ultimately light beings with an unbounded awareness and ability to change form and color. To arrive at this unlimited state of existence, however, requires insight and persistence in overcoming one’s weaknesses and impurities that keep us bound to our limited existence.
So, your book series is not only about adventure, romance, and trials and tribulations, but it’s also about achieving enlightenment? The male and female heroes transcend their individual differences to ultimately gain unity consciousness?
Yes, that’s right. I do want to point out, however, that transcending differences doesn’t mean that the diversity of us unique beings gets compromised or diminished. On the contrary: nature is infinitely diverse, and so are we human beings; none is the same as the other, each of us is a unique expression of the Divine, which is the foundation and infinitely subtle energy and intelligence we are all comprised of. My mer-prince hero and my Magna Graecian-princess heroine, through their self-transformational journeys, achieve a state of unity consciousness that comes with the spiritual power of being able to transform their bodies and looks to match one another’s. They can make themselves invisible and visible, change their hair color, change their body to either have feet or a tail, and be immortal and wise beyond their ages, all as a result of mastering their lower selves throughout their challenging soul journeys. Facing and overcoming monsters of the dark and any other difficult situations along their way in the outside world is thus equal to facing and overcoming the monsters and challenges from within their own souls, which leads to mastery over the self, and with that the soul has gained access to its limitless inner resources, and to its own Divinity.
Sounds quite fantastic. Almost too good to be true. Is that why you are calling it a spiritual fantasy novel? To allow people to regard your book series as a work of fantasy and imagination rather than of fact and truth?
Many legends of old which tell of fabled beings, I believe, are based on actual personalities and true events, which have found their way into what we call fairytales and legends, stories that allow room for misinterpretation, as if they are based on someone’s imagination rather than on the truth. Only the open-mindedness of children allows the spark of truth to touch their hearts and shape their behavior according to the moral of the story. For many contemporary readers, however, it has become fashionable and ‘in’ to follow anti-heroes into their well-deserved demise, and be proud of it. The heart and mind of today’s consumer is often overshadowed by what the masses focus and agree on, which in turn is fueled and supported by negatively oriented public or media figures and their agendas. Part of this negative trendsetting is to belittle or actively destroy the reputation of people and their work, who and which try to set a worthwhile standard of goodness and virtues. High spiritual ambitions, especially when they are universal and all-encompassing of all spiritual and religious beliefs, are often either frowned upon as being outdated and superfluous, or actively fought against by forces which make it their task to keep the masses spiritually dormant and susceptible for further negative indoctrination. One of their main tools is to segregate and isolate people and incite them to regard members of other groups as being on the wrong side and therefore worth fighting against, and at the least to harbor prejudices against.

I, however, like to shake things up and confront my readers with the possibility of empowering themselves, by first obeying the laws of nature and thus gaining their support for creating a fulfilling life, and by secondly transforming their weaknesses into strengths and their impurities into the indestructible light of higher spheres. And this is exactly the goal my two main protagonists are pursuing, fueled by the infinite and eternal love they feel for each other, no matter what species they come from. Because true love is the most powerful force that can turn impossible odds into possible solutions, dissolve obstructions and limitations, and unite differences of all kinds.
What are some of the messages you want to convey to your readership with your stories?
Love is more powerful than evil and hatred. The Divine Source has many emanations who ultimately all work for the best of humanity and all of creation, even if their innermost, profound, and wise intentions are often not understood by us mere mortals. I want to help instill and promote trust in the Divine workings and in the Gods. Even the whales and dolphins are shown as being compassionate and intelligent beings who befriend the mermen on their journey.

I like to take my readers to the edges of our world and universe. Both protagonists are travelling to the extreme locations of our planet: to the North Pole and into the interior of the Earth, and onto Mount Olympos, the seat of the Olympian Gods, a platform from which the princess hopes to be taken into the Heavens. To explore the unknown and what lies beyond our worldly limitations is a worthwhile undertaking, in my opinion, for it can help us align our mind with a greater truth. And to get there, we have to face what keeps us reduced in our spiritual power and attached to an undesirable reality zone. And facing these weaknesses and limitations in ourselves is the first step to dissolving these obstructions, enabling us to become the creators of the life we want.
This point comes across clearly in the last two chapters of the first book. I thought the idea with the self-reflection mirror, with its various outcome possibilities depending on what path one chooses, was a clever and wonderful concept.
Thank you for bringing this up. I was really pouring my soul into this part of my writing!
Yes, it felt like you know what you are talking about there. These ups and downs, these polarities between eternal life and death, very suspensefully written! I was literally unstressing when I read these chapters, in a good way.
That’s what I want to accomplish: show my readers that great investment brings great results, and that suffering and even death can ultimately be overcome.
Another radical concept I love! You seem to have a gift to unerringly penetrate any illusions and misperceptions, able to focus in on what matters most in a situation in order to turn it around so it becomes an opportunity for growth and success.
I like to show how selfless service can be a powerful way to becoming the supernatural beings we truly are. We are the creators of our destiny. We create according to our focus on either what we don’t want or on what we do want, which then shows itself as manifestations in the outside world.

Self-empowerment is the result of self-transformation and purification. A mind that has cleansed itself of distractions and illusions through meditation, for example, is able to see the truth that encompasses all realities. Such a person is enlightened in regard to perceiving life around him as a reflection of himself. He won’t be able to hurt or destroy life around him anymore, for doing so, he understands, is hurting and destroying himself, like many American Indians used to know and live by. A person who — through spiritual practice — has purified his mental, emotional, and physical bodies finds it easy to manifest the great things he envisions. The more purified, the easier and faster the manifestations take place. And those manifestations will be of such quality that they continue to empower and fulfill that person.

Above the entrance of the Oracle of Delphi hung a sign, stating: “Know Thyself and you will know the universe and the Gods.” As within, so without! If you know your inner universe, the microcosm, then knowing the outer universe, or macrocosm follows. I think this truth is very self-empowering, for the key to all treasures seems to lie within ourselves. And when we change, our outer reality changes along with it!
In your second book we learn more about Torilander, Prince Loriolan’s best friend. What you just said made me think about him, because he certainly tries to apply these self-transformation principles to solve his difficult situation.
You are right! It would have been easy for him to give up and resign himself to his miserable condition, but he conjures inner resources and shares them with the people around him. And what a difference it makes!
I couldn’t help but feel for the guy!
Yes, I wanted to show how people in their arrogance and assumed supremacy tend to misjudge and disrespect members of a different race or species, only because they don’t know them and don’t care to know them either. This point gets further dealt with by showing the absurdity of an elite enslaving other humans, as in the history of the once prosperous North African city of Carthage. That is why I’m glad that people like Nelson Mandela existed, who — with the help of his people — turned the oppression and defamation of the African Natives around. Being an educated man himself, he stood in contrast to the objective of the colonial government of white people who wanted to segregate the Natives and keep them uneducated and powerless.
The topics of oppression and liberation run throughout your story. Even the Princess leaves her father’s kingdom behind, aware that it is riddled with corruption and hardships of all kinds.
I think it is a human birthright to be free. Free from oppression and abuse of all kinds, and free from suffering and hardships. But to get to this coveted state we have to transform ourselves. We have to become the person who supports all life forms, and then the laws of nature will support us as well.

History has demonstrated over and over how selfish people assume the throne and government at the expense of the exploited masses. To stay in power, many have slaughtered their fellow humans under the pretense of following the established law, a man-made law that is supposed to keep the power hungry in their positions of control at any cost. Man-made law and Divine Law are two very separate laws. One serves those who establish it, the other serves all life forms equally and justly.
And your protagonists, the two lovers from different life habitats, want to establish Divine Law in their kingdoms?
That’s correct. That’s why they are my heroes! Heroes go for the common wellbeing, not just their own. They want to unite in the Heavens, but they also consider all the hardships of other people they encounter along their way. Instead of falling into the trap many humans fall into when given some power, namely to abuse this power for personal gain, my protagonists go for true spiritual power, which is life-supporting and nourishing to all life forms. And as mentioned before, this requires self-transformation and purification, two processes necessary for holding true spiritual power, which alone can uphold impeccable justice for all and shows deep respect for all life forms.
I like how naturally you weave your spiritual knowledge into the story. Still you manage to do it in an entertaining way. I like the balance of spirituality and worldly adventure and romance.
Thank you. I think that without spiritual aspirations, life is flat and usually moves in vicious cycles of ever-diminishing life force and happiness. Spiritual goals tend to draw the best out of us; they help us grow beyond our unsatisfactory states of existence, and gift us with greater fulfillment in all areas of life. Great change for the better requires dedication and focus on loftier goals. That is why my protagonists seek and follow spiritual advice from enlightened beings, hoping that this kind of knowledge and advice will open the doors to ultimate fulfillment and unification that otherwise would just stay a dream and unfulfilled desire.
How does the second book compare to the first?
Well, the first book is my opening statement for the whole series. The title says it all: The two lovers and their friends get ready to go on the quest of all lifetimes, meaning a soul-searching quest that is supposed to end in the soul becoming immortal and the lovers unified despite their physical differences. For that, they leave their compromised situations behind, along with any and all restricting traditions and codes of behavior. They win their parents’ approval and the hearts of the people they come in contact with along their way. This gives them the support they need to make good progress on their way into the unknown that awaits with great challenges and temptations at every turn.
Yes, I noticed that there are sweet temptations as well, and man, Mer-prince Loriolan knows how to help himself when faced with one of the most beautiful princesses of the underwater world!
Hush! We don’t want to give away too much here! But yes, I had fun writing this scene as well. A steadfast, loyal heart, I wanted to show, can withstand any temptations, no matter how strong! The focus and path towards enlightenment and unity consciousness comes with both: temptations and adversities that try to divert our steps from the very path that would bring us ultimate freedom and fulfillment. Because what else is giving in to temptation than us being too weak to stay the course. I’m not saying that rewarding ourselves for certain achievements is unhealthy; on the contrary, but once you have decided to follow a goal, there is only so much room for erring and misbehaving, especially when another person’s feelings are involved. Both of my lovers are true heroes: their love is so infinitely deep that betraying that love even in the minutest is unimaginable.

In the second book of this series, the two young adults learn to stand their own ground. Their journeys turn into a coming-of-age ceremony where they must demonstrate what they are made of in the face of calamity and hardship. Having lived sheltered lives under their royal parents’ care and protection, the problems of the world hit them hard in the face, and only the love and friendship they feel towards their fellow humans can turn any spiteful event into a meaningful encounter with much growth potential. Not only the goodness of their hearts seems to be able to win every situation, but also and foremost their spiritual knowledge and connection to higher spheres of existence seem to be able to improve and/or solve any challenging situations.
How many more books do you intend to write for this series?
I let the story unfold on its own. But I have a feeling that it will be between five and seven books altogether.
I understand that you also have a music CD out, titled ‘Within Myself’, under your music label Ananda Bliss Harmonies, and a new one in the making?
That’s right! I also like to express my spiritual aptitude musically and with my voice. Before there was the written word, as we know from any creation story, there was sound, the word of God. When I studied the ‘Science Of Creative Intelligence’ according to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, I learned about the importance of the oral tradition of reciting the Rig Veda, one of the four canonical sacred texts of Hinduism, an ancient Indian sacred collection of Vedic Sanskrit hymns that express spiritual knowledge and praise for the Gods. Following an inner calling, I felt inspired to compose and produce music that is just that: praise to the Divine and containing spiritual knowledge that liberates and exalts. My listeners have commented that my music makes them feel calm inside and at the same time enlivened and refreshed. My voice soars above revitalizing rhythms, thus prompting the conscious state of my listeners to expand. The lyrics, also, support the mind-transcending process to allow bliss consciousness, Ananda, to be experienced. (anandablissharmonies.com)
Sounds wonderful! Thank you for this interview. I hope you will have many listeners and readers who will love your music and books as much as I do. I look forward to the next book of this series and wish you much fun with the writing process.
Buy the books at your favorite bookshops: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Store

If you want to know more about Maha Devi Li Ra La, you can visit her website at:

mahadevi-lirala.com

or her publishing house website at:

anandablissconsciousness.com
Published 2016-02-08.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Miracles Of Friendship (Book 2 of the 'Within The Ocean Of Eternal Love' Series)
Series: Within The Ocean Of Eternal Love. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 90,340. Language: English. Published: May 19, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Historical, Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
As the epic tale of two lovers continues, they encounter on their journey to the heavens of the Olympian Gods insurmountable seeming challenges. It takes all the inner resources they can muster to overcome the evil in their way. The merman prince and his Magna Graecian princess, along with their friends, are tested to the core and only the power of friendship can remedy any dire situation.
The Quest Of All Ages (Book 1 of the ‘Within The Ocean Of Eternal Love’ Series)
Series: Within The Ocean Of Eternal Love. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 87,260. Language: English. Published: January 22, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Historical, Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
A spiritual love story of epic proportions, ‘The Quest Of All Ages’ tells the story of a mer-prince and a Magna Graecian princess who set out to overcome their differences to unite in the Heavens of the Olympian Gods, overcoming life-and-death challenges along their way during a time when the Roman Empire threatens to wipe out any remnants of Hellenistic culture and religion.