Verse 3: How can I discern between the Manifest, Unmanifest & Knower?

mūla-prakṛtiḥ avikṛtiḥ maha-ādādyāḥ prakṛti-vikṛtayaḥ sapta |
ṣoḍaśakaḥ tu vikāraḥ na prakṛtiḥ na vikṛtiḥ puruṣaḥ ||

prakṛti – Primordial Nature
avikṛti – uncaused (unchanged)
vikṛti – caused (changed)
vikāra – that which has been changed (and does not cause change)
puruṣa – Spirit (animating principle)

By looking closely at my lived experience of causality.

  1. Causality is based on evolvents and evolutes.
  2. Evolvents are things that cause evolution.
  3. Evolutes are things that are caused (by evolvents).
  4. These two basic terms create a “field of causality” with these potentials:
    1. That which is both caused and causes.
    2. That which is caused but does not cause.
    3. That which is not caused but causes.
    4. That which is neither caused nor causes.
  5. Primordial Nature is an unchanging root cause (not caused by anything else) that causes everything else.
  6. The effects of Primordial Nature are the first 7 (of the principles of Samkhya) which are both evolutes (things that are caused) and evolvents (things that cause).
  7. The first of these 7 is a discerning intelligence (mahat/buddhi ).
  8. The effects of the 7 are the 16 evolutes (those things which are only caused).
  9. The knower (spirit/puruṣa) is neither caused nor causes.
  10. This sounds very theoretical, how can I know this for myself?