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Samyutta Nikaya
Sacca Saṁyutta

56.36 Pāṇa Sutta
Beings

The vastness of the planes of misery.

“Monks, suppose a person were to remove and strip all the sticks and branches in India, gather them together into one pile, and make them into stakes. Then that person would impale the large creatures in the ocean with large stakes, the medium-sized creatures with medium-sized stakes, and the small creatures with small stakes. That person wouldn’t run out of sizable creatures in the ocean before using up all the stakes. Monks, there are far more small creatures in the ocean than this, so it wouldn’t be feasible to impale them on stakes. Why is that? Because of the small size of those life-forms. That’s how big the plane of misery is.

“A person1 who truly realizes the Noble Truth of suffering, who truly realizes the Noble Truth of the origin of suffering, who truly realizes the Noble Truth of the cessation of suffering, and who truly realizes the Noble Truth of the path that leads to the cessation of suffering is freed from that vast plane of misery.

“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 56.36 Pāṇa Sutta: Beings

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