Trishala's most illumining and fulfilling dreams

One night, before Mahavira was born, his mother Trishala had fourteen most significant dreams. She awoke, trembling with joy, and called her husband. She described each dream and asked him its significance. Trishala had dreamt of a lion, the rising sun, a lake filled with lotuses, a vast sea composed entirely of milk and many other sacred symbols.

In profound silence, Siddhartha meditated on the inner meaning of each one. Finally, he said to his wife, "I am fully convinced that you will give birth to a boy who is a very high soul. He will bring great honour and glory to our family. One day he will be crowned king and he will command a large army."

Trishala was very happy with the meaning her husband ascribed to her dreams. She stayed awake the rest of the night so that these good dreams would not be counteracted by any bad dreams.

When morning dawned, Siddhartha summoned the wise men of the village to come and interpret the dreams. They discussed all the symbols at great length and concluded that Siddhartha's son would be either an emperor or a Jina. A Jina is one who is victorious in the inner world. He is the conqueror of the self. It is from this word that we derive the word "Jaina."

Siddhartha accepted this interpretation and rewarded the wise men with food and gifts. Trishala was overjoyed to receive the news that their child was destined to achieve great things.