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Glory of Jainism: Trishalamata

Published: 15.10.2012



It was Trishalamata who gave birth to an illustrious son Vardhaman who turned out to be mankind's saviour. She has, therefore, been a venerable lady. She was the queen of king Siddharth and the sister of king Chetak of Vaishali. Her motherhood has been a source of inspiration to millions throughout the world and writers have delineated her life very vividly. The god Harinaigmeshi implanted eighty-two day embryo into Trishaladevi's womb. One night, while in deep slumber, she saw fourteen dreams. She described these auspicious dreams to her husband Siddharth. The king summoned some scholars, well-versed in the interpretation of dreams, and asked them what the dreams stood for. Queen Trishala had, in her dreams, seen a white elephant resembling king Indra's Airava, a Rishabh (bull) with white teeth, a lion, goddess Laxmi, a garland of fresh flowers, bright moon, fiery sun, a fluttering flag, silver pot, lake padma, and kshirsagar (ocean), divine aircraft, precious jewels, and smokeless fire. The scholars interpreted the dreams and said, "O King, a brave and fearless son, with divine powers, will be born to you. He will either be a powerful king or a propagator and protector of religion." The embryo in mother Trishala's womb was worried about the pain its movements caused to the mother. It, therefore, became very quiet and stopped all movements. This made Trishala extremely unhappy. She became suspicious whether somebody had stolen the embryo or whether it had dissipated. Her condition made the king worried too. All entertainments in the place came to a standstill.

Once Trishaladevi fainted and the foetus inside Trishaladevi's womb blamed itself for causing pain to the mother rather than joy. The foetus, then, stirred in the womb and a smile flickered across Trishaladevi's face. Vardhaman inside too felt happy thinking about the bond of love between the mother and the child. He thought, "I must not cause any pain to my loving parents and I will not." He, then, decided not to renounce the world so long as the parents were living. Before his birth, Bhagwan Mahavir's first sermon was on devotion to mother. On the thirteenth day of Chaitra Sud, in the year 543 before Vikram Samvat, at midnight, prince Vardhaman was born. There was brilliance all around, heralding the birth of a unique child. Fifty six virgins performed dances to welcome his birth. Young Vardhaman was engaged to Yashoda. Trishaladevi thought that marriage would definitely succeed in holding back prince Vardhaman from his desire to take renunciation. Vardhaman was a householder but he had lost interest in worldly affairs. He lived in a palace surrounded by comforts but he kept himself aloof from them.

Love abounded in the family and king Siddharth, Trishaladevi, elder brother Nandivardhan, and his wife Jyestha, Vardhaman and Yashoda would exchange pleasantries when they got together. Vardhaman, then, would discuss religion and its different facets, followed by devotional music. The entire family, a well-knit unit, would partake of the devotional feast. There existed a strong bond of love between elder brother Nandivardhan and Siddharth. This made mother Trishala extremely happy. But destiny had some other designs in store. When she was in a state of bliss, Mother Trishala, realised that her end was approaching. She confessed her sins, gave up taking food and breathed her last. She was the mother not of an ordinary child but one who was a seer and one the last Tirthankar, Bhagwan Mahavir, whom even god Indra was always eager to propitiate.

Title: Glory Of Jainism

Ashok Saha and Prathana Saha


Shri Anilbhai Gandhi (Trustee),
Palitana - 364270 (India)

Edition: 1998

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Bhagwan Mahavir
  2. Indra
  3. Laxmi
  4. Mahavir
  5. Rishabh
  6. Tirthankar
  7. Trishala
  8. Vikram Samvat
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