§ 36. Discernment & Release.
With his mind thus concentrated, purified, & bright, the monk directs it to
the knowledge of the ending of the mental fermentations. Just as if there were
a pool of water in a mountain glen -- clear, limpid, & unsullied -- where
a man with good eyesight standing on the bank could see shells, gravel, &
pebbles, and also shoals of fish swimming about & resting, and it would occur
to him, 'This pool of water is clear, limpid, & unsullied. Here are these
shells, gravel, & pebbles, and also these shoals of fish swimming about &
resting.' In the same way, the monk discerns, as it is actually present, that
'This is stress...This is the origination of stress...This is the cessation of
stress...This is the way leading to the cessation of stress...These are mental
fermentations... This is the origination of fermentations...This is the cessation
of fermentations...This is the way leading to the cessation of fermentations.'
His heart, thus knowing, thus seeing, is released from the fermentations of sensuality,
becoming, & ignorance. With release, there is the knowledge, 'Released.' He
discerns that 'Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is
nothing further for this world.' This, too, is a reward of the contemplative life,
visible here & now, more excellent than the previous ones and more sublime.
And as for another visible fruit of the contemplative life, higher & more
sublime than this, there is none.
Washing my feet, I noticed
And in watching it flow from high
my heart was composed
like a fine thoroughbred steed.
Then taking a lamp, I entered the hut,
checked the bedding,
sat down on the bed.
And taking a pin, I pulled out the wick:
Like the flame's unbinding
was the liberation