A puzzled seeker asked the Buddha : “I have heard that some of your disciples meditate with expectations, others meditate with no expectations, and yet others are indifferent to the result. What is the best ?
The Buddha answered : Whether they meditate with or without expectations, if they have the wrong ideas and the wrong methods, they will not get any fruits from their meditations. Think about it. Suppose some people want to have some oil and put sand into a bowl, then sprinkle it with salt. However much they press it they will not get oil, for that is not the method. Others are in need of milk. They start pulling the horn of a young cow. Whether they have any expectations or not, they will not get any milk out of the horn for that’s not the method. Or if some people fill a jar with water and churn it in order to get butter, they will be left only with water.
But if seekers meditate with a wholesome attitude, with right intention and mindfulness, then whether they have expectations of not, they will gain insight. It’s like filling a bowl with oil seeds and pressing them or milking a cow by pulling the udder or filling a jar with cream and churning it. It’s the right method.