WalBarb wrote:When reading this discourse, it remains questionable to me that this discourse is about the "minds inclination" towards a specific satipatthana (if that is the interpretation you are proposing). As I read this discourse, it repeats the same theme with each satipatthana.
Yes, so each tetrad has an exemplar who does or does not pick up the sign of his mind, and this is what renders the satipatthana effort successful or not.
I suggest that given the presence of wholesome factors in both cases ("ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world"), a key interpretive aspect of the simile is that just as "he takes note of his master, thinking, 'Today my master likes X'", so too he needs to note how the mind is responding to the particular tetrad, adjusting accordingly. I might be inclined to call this vitakka-vicara.
"There are cases where a foolish, inexperienced, unskillful monk remains focused on the body in & of itself — ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world. As he remains thus focused... not concentrated... he is not rewarded ... with mindfulness & alertness."
So, in the case of the unskilled who does not pick up the sign, as he remains alert and mindful he is not rewarded with mindfulness and alertness. It's rather odd, isn't it?