Sukhasiddhi arrived at tantric Buddhism late in life. She lived as an impoverished housewife and mother of six children until the age of fifty-nine. She was thrown out of her home by her husband and children, who were irate at what they considered her misplaced generosity to a stranger who came begging at their door. She wandered westward to Oddiyana (Swat Valley in modern Pakistan), where she acquired a measure of grain, with which she made alcohol. Her business proved a modest success, and she allowed herself to again be generous, this time to a female adept referred to as Avadhuti-ma, who regularly bought alcohol for her companion, an adept in retreat. Sukhasiddhi’s gift of free alcohol intrigued the adept, Virupa, who asked whether his surprising benefactor wanted to receive Buddhist teaching. She did.

Sukhasiddhi’s story relates that she brought as offerings to Virupa two containers of alcohol and some pork. Although this meeting predates the Muslim domination of India, pork and alcohol were far from what would have normally constituted suitable offerings for spiritual teaching, even to tantric masters. Nevertheless, Virupa was no normal master, and Sukasiddhi would prove an exceptional disciple. Upon receiving empowerment and instruction from Virupa, Sukasiddhi, then a sixty-one-year-old, attained full enlightenment that very evening.

~ From “Timeless Rapture” by Jamgon Kongtrul