Swami Vivekananda in his book Raja Yoga while explaining the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali talks about experiences – experience of the mind and experience of the soul (purusha). He describes the soul and identification with experience. The question arises- Why does the soul experience misery? And does the soul experience love? The excerpt from his book below describes this.
The Purusha (soul), when it identifies itself with nature, forgets that it is pure and infinite.
The Purusha (soul) does not love, it is love itself.
It does not exist, it is existence itself.
The Soul does not know, It is knowledge itself.
It is a mistake to say the Soul loves, exists, or knows. Love, existence, and knowledge are not the qualities of the Purusha, but its essence.
When they get reflected upon something, you may call them the qualities of that something. They are not the qualities but the essence of the Purusha (soul), the great Atman, the Infinite Being, without birth or death, established in its own glory.
Swami Vivekananda adds,
You were never bound by laws, nature never had a bond for you. That is what the Yogi tells you. Have patience to learn it. And the Yogi shows how, by junction with nature, and identifying itself with the mind and the world, the Purusha (soul) thinks itself miserable. Then the Yogi goes on to show you that the way out is through experience. You have to get all this experience, but finish it quickly. We have placed ourselves in this net, and will have to get out. We have got ourselves caught in the trap, and we will have to work out our freedom. So get this experience of husbands, and wives, and friends, and little loves; you will get through them safely if you never forget what you really are. Never forget this is only a momentary state, and that we have to pass through it.
Experience is the one great teacher — experience of pleasure and pain — but know it is only experience. It leads, step by step, to that state where all things become small, and the Purusha so great that the whole universe seems as a drop in the ocean and falls off by its own nothingness. We have to go through different experiences, but let us never forget the ideal.