“…only a pure devotee can restrain himself from the attractive feature of maya [illusion]. Otherwise, once a living entity is trapped by the external feature of maya, he cannot overcome it.”
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This is from the Srimad-Bhagavatam 8.12, Chapter Summary
[This chapter of the Srimad-Bhagavatam is entitled, “The Mohini-murti Incarnation Bewilders Lord Siva.” It describes how Lord Siva was bewildered upon seeing the beautiful Mohini-murti incarnation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and how he later came to his senses.
When Lord Siva heard about the pastimes performed by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, in the form of an attractive woman, he mounted his bull and went to see the Lord. Accompanied by his wife, Uma, and his servants, the bhuta-gana, or ghosts, he approached the lotus feet of the Lord.
Lord Siva offered obeisances to the Supreme Lord as the all-pervading Lord, the universal form, the supreme controller of creation, the Supersoul, the resting place for everyone, and the completely independent cause of all causes. Thus he offered prayers giving truthful descriptions of the Lord. Then he expressed his desire.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead is very kind to His devotees. Therefore, to fulfill the desire of His devotee Lord Siva, He expanded His energy and manifested Himself in the form of a very beautiful and attractive woman. Upon seeing this form, even Lord Siva was captivated. Later, by the grace of the Lord, he controlled himself.
This demonstrates that by the power of the Lord’s external energy, everyone is captivated by the form of woman in this material world. Again, however, by the grace of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one can overcome the influence of maya. This was evinced by Lord Siva, the topmost devotee of the Lord. First he was captivated, but later, by the grace of the Lord, he restrained himself.
It is declared in this connection that only a pure devotee can restrain himself from the attractive feature of maya. Otherwise, once a living entity is trapped by the external feature of maya, he cannot overcome it.