Categories
Samyutta Nikaya
Sacca Saṁyutta

56.32 Khadira Sutta
Cactus

A simile for the people who think that they can become enlightened without understanding the Four Noble Truths.

“Monks, suppose someone were to say, ‘Without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of suffering, without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the origin of suffering, without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the cessation of suffering, and without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the path that leads to the cessation of suffering, I will completely make an end of suffering.’ That is not possible.

“Monks, it’s as if someone were to say, ‘I’ll make a cone basket out of a cactus leaf, a pine needle or a myrobalan leaf, and use it to carry water or a palm fruit.’ That is not possible. In the same way, suppose someone were to say, ‘Without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of suffering, without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the origin of suffering, without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the cessation of suffering, and without truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the path that leads to the cessation of suffering, I will completely make an end of suffering.’ That is not possible.

“But suppose someone were to say, ‘After truly comprehending the Noble Truth of suffering, after truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the origin of suffering, after truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the cessation of suffering, and after truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the path that leads to the cessation of suffering, I will completely make an end of suffering.’ That is possible.

“It’s as if someone were to say, ‘I’ll make a cone basket out of a lotus leaf, an elephant-ear leaf or a camel’s foot creeper leaf, and use it to carry water or a palm fruit.’ That is possible. In the same way, suppose someone were to say, ‘After truly comprehending the Noble Truth of suffering, after truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the origin of suffering, after truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the cessation of suffering, and after truly comprehending the Noble Truth of the path that leads to the cessation of suffering, I will completely make an end of suffering.’ That is possible.

“Therefore, monks, you should make an effort to understand: ‘This is suffering.’ You should make an effort to understand: ‘This is the origin of suffering.’ You should make an effort to understand: ‘This is the cessation of suffering.’ You should make an effort to understand: ‘This is the path that leads to the cessation of suffering.’”

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Saṁyutta Nikāya 56.32 Khadira Sutta: Cactus

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