History of the wisdom dakini Sukhasiddhi
Homage to the glorious Vajra Dakini! In ancient India, there was a country of 38,000 villages named Katchie. An old couple with three sons and three daughters lived in a western village of this land during a time of drought and scarcity. They were very poor.
Among all eight of them, they had only one vase of rice. They sealed the lid of this vase and hid it away, to save it for a more difficult time, while they all went out to look for food, the sons to the south, the daughters to the north, and the father to the west. The mother, who at this time was 59 years old, stayed home.
While she was home alone, a beggar, who was in even greater distress and hunger than she, came to their house. She pitied him and so she cooked all the rice in the vase and gave it to him. After a while, the father returned home, having found no food. He was very hungry and weak and thought that now was the time to eat the rice and regain strength before going back out again to look for more. The sons and daughters returned at the same time, also empty-handed and very hungry. They said to the mother, "Get out the rice now and cook it; we are very weak and hungry."
The mother said to them, "I thought that you might get some food, so I gave all the rice to a poor man who came here begging."
At this, the husband and children were very upset and together cried out at her, "You've done this before. Rather than go out as we do to beg and look for food, you give away all the food that we have gotten! You continually make us miserable – Get out of here!" and they threw her out of the house.
The old woman crossed Katchie and came to the western Uddiyana land. She saw that all the men in this land were courageous and noble, and the women were possessed of great fortitude. Upon arriving in Uddiyana, her mind felt naturally clear. It was harvest time, and so she obtained a large bag of rice and soon had a place in the village market making and selling rice wine.
At this time, a great teacher, Birwapa, also called Awa Dotipa, lived in the jungle nearby, engaged in profound meditation. He had a companion, a very reverent and devoted lady, who went regularly to the market to buy him wine. After a while, she began buying from the old woman, since her wine was so delicious.
One day, the old woman asked the yogi's companion, "To whom do you bring this wine?"
"I offer it to a great yogi who lives in the jungle nearby," she answered. Then the old woman said, "Since this is the case, you may have this wine for free and she gave her some especially delicious and strong wine to bring to the yogi."
Upon her return, Birwapa said to his companion, "You bring all this fine wine back without paying for it. How do you manage that?"
"There is a very devoted wine seller in the market, completely different from the ones we used to buy from. When I told her that I come to get wine for a great lama, she was filled with devotion and insisted on giving this wine to me as an offering," she replied.
Upon hearing this, Birwapa said, "I should liberate this woman from the three samsaric worlds."
The lady returned and asked Sukhasiddhi if she would like to meet the yogi. The old woman's heart soared with joy and aspiration at this prospect, and so, with a vase of her special wine and a piece of meat to offer him, she went to see the yogi. Birwapa completely bestowed upon her the four secret empowerments and instructed her in the meditation of development and accomplishment (i.e., form and formless meditation).
Sukhasiddhi was transformed into a Wisdom Dakini. By the next day, her 61-year-old impure karmic body was completely and naturally purified, becoming transmuted into a rainbow body by the power of her accomplishment. She became youthful in appearance, like a 16-year-old girl, her skin shining clear and white, and her hair flowing down her back. She was so beautiful that one could never look at her and turn away satisfied, but would always want to continually gaze upon her. She remained in the sky and became known as Sukhasiddhi, the Union of Bliss and Accomplishment. She became a selfless dakini and the spiritual companion of Birwapa.
Through overcoming death, Sukhasiddhi lives eternally beyond the cycle of rebirth and spreads her blessings six times daily to all sentient beings in all realms of existence by her great wisdom.
To those beings whose thoughts are pure, she gives teaching, and to all those who perform the secret sadhana and pray devotedly to her, she bestows many blessings and transfers extraordinary spiritual accomplishment. Likewise, anyone hearing the biography of this great wisdom dakini and thereafter hearing her name will feel inspired with devotion.
Quoted with permission from Radiant Wisdom, KDK Publications, San Francisco, 1979.