|The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali - Book 2 - The Steps to Union|
|26. The state of bondage is overcome through perfectly
A word here on discrimination will be of value as it is the first great method of attaining liberation  or freedom from the three worlds. Based as it is on a realization of the essential duality of nature, and regarding nature as a result of the union of the two polarities of the Absolute All, spirit and matter, discrimination is at first an attitude of mind and must be sedulously cultivated. The premise of the duality is admitted as a logical basis for further work and the theory is tested out in an effort to prove the truth. The aspirant then definitely assumes the attitude of higher polarity (that of spirit, manifesting as the soul or inner ruler) and seeks in the affairs of every day to discriminate between the form and the life, between the soul and the body, between the sum total of the lower manifestation (physical, astral and mental man) and the real self, the cause of the lower manifestation.
He seeks in the affairs of every day to cultivate a consciousness of the real and a negation of the unreal and this he carries into all his relationships and into all his affairs. He accustoms himself, through persistent unbroken practise, to distinguish between the self and the not-self, and to occupy himself with the affairs of spirit and not with those of the great maya or world of forms. This distinction is at first theoretical, then intellectual but later assumes more reality and enters into the happenings of the emotional and physical world. Finally the following of this method eventuates in the entrance of the aspirant into an entirely new dimension and his identification with a life and a world of being dissociated from the three worlds of human endeavor. 
When this is so the new environment becomes familiar to him so that he knows not only the form but the subjective Reality which produces or causes the existence of the forms.
Then he passes on to the cultivation of the next great quality which is dispassion or desirelessness. A man may be able to distinguish between the real and the true, between the substance and the Life which animates it and yet desire or "go out" towards the form existence. This too must be overcome before perfect liberation, emancipation or freedom is attained. In one of the old commentaries in the archives of the Lodge of Masters, the following words are found:
The above merits close consideration and can be linked to the thought embodied in the occult phrase: "Before a man can tread the Path, he must become that Path himself."
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