4.25 – When one perceives the difference between states of consciousness and Changeless Awareness, the construction of the false-self comes to an end.

विशेषदर्शिनः आत्मभावभावनानिवृत्तिः ॥२५॥

vishesa darshinah atma bhava bhavana vinivrittih

  • vishesa – distinction; difference; special
  • darshinah – seeing; observing; experiencing; presence; view; philosophy
  • atma – the Self; soul; Spirit
  • bhava – state of being
  • bhavana – contemplation; dwelling upon; absorption in; building; developing; cultivating
  • vinivrittih – cessation; coming to an end

4.26 – Then consciousness, flowing with clear intuition, moves in the direction of absolute freedom.

तदा विवेकनिम्नं कैवल्यप्राग्भारं चित्तम् ॥२६॥

tada viveka nimnam kaivalya pragbharam chittam

  • tada – then
  • viveka – discernment; discrimination; wisdom; clear intuition
  • nimnam – flowing downwards; inclined towards
  • kaivalya – liberation; perfect unity; enlightenment; freedom; Self-knowledge
  • pragbharam – propensity; gravitating toward
  • chittam – consciousness; field of consciousness; reflecting; mind; thought

Commentary on Sutras 4.25 and 4.26:

Patanjali returns to the theme introduced in Sutras 3.36 and 3.50—that we can eventually come to perceive the difference between the most sattvic aspect of our being, buddhi (the higher intellect) and Changeless Awareness. Here, he tells us that when we reach that stage, we will cease constructing the false-self.

That stage is the still-point, the pause between the incoming and outgoing tides. Having reached it, our entire life trajectory is about to change permanently.

Maya, the Great Mother Goddess, who breathed us forth into lifetimes of delusion and illusion, is drawing us back in with the power of her inhaling breath. We’re now heading toward absolute freedom, cutting through all our stubborn layers of spiritual ignorance as we move.