Monks, suppose a foolish, incompetent, unskilled cook were to prepare various curries for the king, but did not take note of which curries the king enjoyed, would he gain gifts and bonuses?
No, he would not, because he did not take care of his master’s preferences.
Likewise, monks, here a monk practises the four foundations of mindfulness, but his mind does not become concentrated, he gains no pleasant abiding in this very life, not mindfulness and clear comprehension. Why is that? Because he does not take note of the signs in his own mind.
Monks, when a wise, competent, skilled cook prepares various curries for the king, he takes note of which curries the king enjoys, thus he gains gifts and bonuses because he takes care of his master’s preferences.
Likewise, monks, a wise, competent, and skilled monk gains concentration, pleasant abiding here and now, and gains mindfulness and clear comprehension because he takes note of the signs in his own mind. S.v.149.