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Cooks —Bhikkhu Sujato

Linked Discourses 47

1. In Ambapālī’s Wood

8. Cooks

1.1“Mendicants, suppose a foolish, incompetent, unskillful cook was to serve a ruler or their minister with an excessive variety of curries: 1.2superbly sour, bitter, pungent, and sweet; hot and mild, and salty and bland.

2.1But that cook didn’t take their master’s hint: 2.2‘Today my master preferred this sauce, or he reached for it, or he took a lot of it, or he praised it. 2.3Today my master preferred the sour or bitter or pungent or sweet or hot or mild or salty sauce. Or he preferred the bland sauce, or he reached for the bland one, or he took a lot of it, or he praised it.’

3.1That foolish, incompetent, unskillful cook doesn’t get presented with clothes, wages, or bonuses. 3.2Why is that? 3.3Because they don’t take their master’s hint.

3.4In the same way, a foolish, incompetent, unskillful mendicant meditates by observing an aspect of the body—keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world. 3.5As they meditate observing an aspect of the body, their mind doesn’t enter immersion, and their corruptions aren’t given up. 3.6But they don’t take the hint. 3.7They meditate observing an aspect of feelings … 3.8mind … 3.9principles—keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world. 3.10As they meditate observing an aspect of principles, the mind doesn’t enter immersion, and the corruptions aren’t given up. 3.11But they don’t take the hint.

4.1That foolish, incompetent, unskillful mendicant doesn’t get blissful meditations in this very life, nor do they get mindfulness and situational awareness. 4.2Why is that? 4.3Because they don’t take their mind’s hint.

5.1Suppose an astute, competent, skillful cook was to serve a ruler or their minister with an excessive variety of curries: 5.2superbly sour, bitter, pungent, and sweet; hot and mild, and salty and bland.

6.1And that cook took their master’s hint: 6.2‘Today my master preferred this sauce, or he reached for it, or he took a lot of it, or he praised it. 6.3Today my master preferred the sour or bitter or pungent or sweet or hot or mild or salty sauce. Or he preferred the bland sauce, or he reached for the bland one, or he took a lot of it, or he praised it.’

7.1That astute, competent, skillful cook gets presented with clothes, wages, and bonuses. 7.2Why is that? 7.3Because they take their master’s hint.

7.4In the same way, an astute, competent, skillful mendicant meditates by observing an aspect of the body—keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world. 7.5As they meditate observing an aspect of the body, their mind enters immersion, and their corruptions are given up. 7.6They take the hint. 7.7They meditate observing an aspect of feelings … 7.8mind … 7.9principles—keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world. 7.10As they meditate observing an aspect of principles, their mind enters immersion, and their corruptions are given up. 7.11They take the hint.

8.1That astute, competent, skillful mendicant gets blissful meditations in this very life, and they get mindfulness and situational awareness. 8.2Why is that? 8.3Because they take their mind’s hint.”