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Samyutta Nikaya
Sacca Saṁyutta

56.46 Andhakāra Sutta
Darkness

Even more dark than the most pitch black places is the one who holds on to wrong views.

“Monks, in this world, there is a very dark space which is empty and not covered from anything. That space is so utterly dark that even the light of the moon and the sun, so mighty and powerful, doesn’t reach it.”

When the Buddha said this, one of the monks asked the Buddha, “Bhante, that darkness really is massive, so very massive. Is there any other darkness more massive and terrifying than this one?”

“There is, monk.”

“But bhante, what is it?”

“Monk, there are people who don’t truly understand about suffering, the origin of suffering, the end of suffering, and the path that leads to the end of suffering. They take pleasure in formations that lead to rebirth, old age, and death; to sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. Since they take pleasure in such formations, they continue to accumulate formations that lead to rebirth, old age, and death; to sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. Having accumulated formations that lead to rebirth, old age, and death; to sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress, they fall into the darkness of rebirth, old age, and death; of sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. They’re not freed from rebirth, old age, and death; from sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. I say, they’re not freed from suffering.

“Monk, there are people who truly understand about suffering, the origin of suffering, the end of suffering, and the path that leads to the end of suffering. They don’t take pleasure in formations that lead to rebirth, old age, and death; to sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. Since they don’t take pleasure in such formations, they don’t accumulate formations that lead to rebirth, old age, and death; to sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. Having ended formations that lead to rebirth, old age, and death; to sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress, they don’t fall into the darkness of rebirth, old age, and death; of sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. They’re freed from rebirth, old age, and death; from sorrow, crying, pain, sadness, and distress. I say, they’re freed from suffering.

“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 end of suffering.’ You should make an effort to understand: ‘This is the path that leads to the end of suffering.’”

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Saṁyutta Nikāya 56.46 Andhakāra Sutta: Darkness

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