There is mention of ‘act of truth’ or ‘saccha-kriya’ in the story of king Ashoka and a prostitute, also it is mentioned in some of the Jataka tales…is it possible for us? If yes how? Can plz anyone answer?
Dear brother in the Dhamma
Indeed yes, for instance, one of these is in the suttas itself and chanted as protection for childbirth: Angulimala Sutta (Majjhima Nikaya, sutta no. 86 )
Then, after wandering for alms in Sāvatthī, after the meal, on his return from alms-round, he went to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and told him what had happened. The Buddha said to him, “Well then, Aṅgulimāla, go to that woman and say this:
‘Ever since I was born, sister, I don’t recall having intentionally taken the life of a living creature. By this truth, may both you and your baby be safe.’”
“But sir, wouldn’t that be telling a deliberate lie? For I have intentionally killed many living creatures.”
“In that case, Aṅgulimāla, go to that woman and say this:
‘Ever since I was born in the noble birth, sister, I don’t recall having intentionally taken the life of a living creature. By this truth, may both you and your baby be safe.’”
“Yes, sir,” replied Aṅgulimāla. He went to that woman and said:
“Ever since I was born in the noble birth, sister, I don’t recall having intentionally taken the life of a living creature. By this truth, may both you and your baby be safe?”
The baby and mother were indeed safe. As you can see, the instructions of the Buddha is pretty simple, “by the power of this truth ….”
We can find this also often in protection chanting in the formula:
” Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!
By this truth, may there be well-being!
I hope this may help
So sir do you mean chanting angulimala sutta will help?
Also by act of truth I meant doing something which is not possible normally, like for example story of king Ashoka and prostitute…
“There is a word in in Hindi, kiriya. It is used when someone swears by something. it is short for saccha kiriya, that is an “act of truth”. An act of truth is performed by using the accumulated power of some form of secret you have kept for a long time. There are many stories about “acts of truth”. Here is one of those stories:
It is said that emperor Ashoka, in the third century BCE, was standing by the River Ganga (Ganges) near his capital. In the history of India Ashoka is well known as the most noble king. being an emperor Ashoka could naturally follow whatever whim he wished. So he said to his ministers, “I wonder whether it is possible to for anyone to make the river flow back towards the mountains!”.
The ministers, not wanting to offend the emperor, very gently told him, “Sir many things are possible but perhaps this is not one of them”.
a courtesan was passing by. She said, “You are all wise ministers, and who am I to speak in the presence of a great emperor., but may I have permission to speak please?” So she was granted permission. She said, “Even someone as lowly as myself can make the river flow backwards”. They asked her to demonstrate. She stood there, closed her eyes and did a saccha kiriya, an act of truth. And the emperor saw that, indeed, the river was flowing backwards towards the mountains. “That is enough”, he said, “Let the river flow naturally”. And she let the river flow.
The king and his wise men asked her what her secret was. How could a prostitute have such power? She said, “when I was younger and circumstances led me into this kind of life, I said to myself that there is very little good I can do
in this life to raise myself, but I must do something. So I made one vow to myself, though I lead the life of a prostitute, whether a prince comes to me or a leper comes to me, in mind and body I will treat them absolutely equally. And I have kept to that secret truth in my life. I have not let it out to this day. It is by the power of this truth that I have been able to make the river flow backwards. However for this kind of power you must keep your truth a secret.”
Kind sir I am asking about that what the prostitute could do in above story? Is it possible? If yes how?
It is a bit interesting. However, with things like this and the Dhamma of the Buddha, Buddha has asked the Sangha not to show off Siddhis to gain followers. It is much better you become impressive by your ability to expound the Dhamma, instead of some mystical feats, because expounding the Dhamma will help you and others get out of Samsara quicker. Getting rivers to flow backwards is not the purpose of Buddha Dhamma, although an interesting feat, even to King Ashoka, a great king. He would have been more impressed and at Peace if the person in question had preached Him the Dhamma.
The act of truth you are seeking for, is to come to term with the law of impermanence. Its cruelty, indifference, power, have no matching counter strike available.
That is how it is.
Body is just a body, there will be another one after this. Read some dhamma talks and lay down your burden to control lifespan, there is way out of this but not the direction you are walking down right now.
Without impermanence, the wicked things of this world would not cease. Impermanence is the great mercy of Time, and we should rejoice that this world is fleeting. Nibbana awaits, and that is our juncture of Joy as Buddhists.
Ok sir maybe you are right…I will try!
In doctrinal terms what the discussion has correctly pointed out is that progress needs both serenity and insight (impermanence). However ‘an act of truth’ as it has been called, is traditionally exemplified by the Buddha’s Victory over Mara, where he invoked the authority of the earth goddess to verify his good deeds. This is a personification of the action of kamma, an aspect of cause and effect, or mundane right view. All good and bad thoughts/actions will have results, this is the foundation belief of the path, and they should be observed (but not obsessively), as the Buddha-to-be did as a procedure leading to awakening:
"And as I remained thus heedful, ardent, & resolute, thinking imbued with sensuality arose in me. I discerned that ‘Thinking imbued with sensuality has arisen in me; and that leads to my own affliction or to the affliction of others or to the affliction of both. It obstructs discernment, promotes vexation, & does not lead to Unbinding.’
"And as I remained thus heedful, ardent, & resolute, thinking imbued with renunciation arose in me. I discerned that 'Thinking imbued with renunciation has arisen in me; and that leads neither to my own affliction, nor to the affliction of others, nor to the affliction of both. It fosters discernment, promotes lack of vexation, & leads to Unbinding. "–MN 19
At whatever stage of development, a practitioner aware that this investigation procedure is going on is on the right path.