The cause of suffering is that the unbounded Self is overshadowed by the world.
Millions Of Reflection
There is an old story. A king had made a palace; the palace was called the Mirror Palace. The floor, the walls, the ceiling, all were covered in millions of mirrors, tiny, tiny mirrors. There was nothing else in the whole palace; it was a mirror palace. Once it happened, the king’s dog, by mistake, was left inside the palace in the night and the palace was locked from the outside. The dog looked, became frightened — there were millions of dogs everywhere. He was reflected; down, up, all the directions — millions of dogs. He was not an ordinary dog, he was the king’s dog — very brave — but even then, he was alone. He ran from one room to another, but there was no escape, there was no go. All over. He became more and more frightened. He tried to get out, but there was no way to get out — the door was locked.
Just to frighten the other dogs he started barking, but the moment he barked the other dogs also barked — because they were pure reflections. Then he became more frightened. To frighten the other dogs he started knocking against the walls. The other dogs also jumped into him, bumped into him. In the morning the dog was found dead.
But the moment the dog died, all the dogs died. The palace was empty. There was only one dog and millions of reflections.
This is the standpoint of Patanjali: that there is only one reality, millions of reflections of it. You are separate from me as a reflection, I am separate from you as a reflection, but if we move towards the real, the separation will be gone — we will be one.
Knowledge born of the finest discrimination takes us to the farthest shore. It is intuitive, omniscient, and beyond all divisions of time and space.