sidgau-tm.jpg Sona lived alone in the Cool Forest and this thought occurred to him: “Of those followers of the Blessed One who are energetic, I am one. Yet, my mind has not found freedom.”

Now the Buddha, perceiving in his own mind Sona’s thoughts, appeared in the forest and said: “Sona, did not this thought arise in your mind?”

“Yes, Blessed One.”

“Tell me, Sona, in earlier days were you not skilled in playing string music on a lute? When the strings of your lute were too taut, was then your lute tuneful and easily playable?”

“Certainly not, O Blessed One.”

“And when the strings of your lute were too loose, was then your lute tuneful and easily playable?”

“Certainly not, O Blessed One.”

“And when the strings of your lute were neither too taut nor too loose, but adjusted to an even pitch, did your lute then have a wonderful sound and was it easily playable?”

“Certainly, Blessed One.”

“Similarly, if energy is applied too strongly, it will lead to restlessness, and if energy is too lax, it will lead to lassitude. Therefore, Sona, keep your energy in balance and in this way, focus your attention.”

(source: no. 5, pages 75-76)