Once upon an uncomputable time past, there
was a king bearing the name of Mahajanaka who reigned in the
city of Mithili in land of Videnam.
King Mahajanaka had two sons named respectively Aritthajanaka
The elder son was inverted by the King as Viceroy, and the younger
In the course of time, the King passed away to Heaven.
Prince Aritthajanaka acceded to the throne and invested his brother
Then one close courtier kept repeating to the King: "Your
august Majesty, the Viceroy is plotting against the throne."
The oft recurring venomous words took their tool on the King's
affection for his brother. As a result, Viceroy Polajanaka was
put in chains and under guard in a mansion near the Royal Palace.
Polajanaka swore upon the truth: "It I truly plotted against
my brother, let these chains enfix my hands and feet forever
band the door stay closed and locked. If I am innocent of High
Treason, let these chains fall from my hands and feet and the
door be opened."
On that instant, the chains dropped down in prices and the door
Thereupon, Prince Polajanaka went to a frontier town to recoup.
the people recognized him and took good care of him. Now King
Aritthajanaka was unable to have him arrested.
Prince Polajanaka was able to expand his influence over the whole
frontier territory and assembled a large military might.
He reflected: Of old, I entertained no ill will to words my brother.
But now the situation has changed so I'll act accordingly."
He called up the militia and, surrounded by a host of populace,
set off for the city of Mithila.
There he established an encampment outside the limit of the metropolis.
When the soldiers of Mithila City learnt that Prince Polajanaka
had arrived, they came in great number, to the prince's headquarters,
bringing with them a quantity of military equipment and transport
such as elephants. Civilians from the city also came to join.
Prince Polajanaka sent a sort of ultimatum to his brother: "In
the past I never entertained any kind of enmity towards you but
I intend to kindle hostility at this very moment. Are you going
to cede the throne to me or are we to battle it out?"
King Aritthajanaka acknowledged the message and decided to battle.
So he called his Queen and said: "Dearest, to vanquish or
to be vanquished is not predictable. If I am to meet deadly danger,
than take good care of our unborn seed."
After these words, he led the army out of the royal city.
In the battle that ensued, Prince Polajanaka's soldiers made
mince meat of Aritthajanaka's and killed him.
When the people about the King's demise. there was a great turmoil
all though the city.
As soon as the Queen knew that her royal consort was no more,
she hurried to collect different valuables, such as gold, in
a basket which she covered with old rags and put some rice on
top. She donned old tainted clothes to disguise herself and,
putting the basket on her head, she left the city immediately.
Although it was broad daylight, nobody recognized her.
The queen went though the Northern gate. She did not know where
to proceed next because she had never been out anywhere. So she
went to a rest-house and inquired if there was anyone heading
for the city of Kalachampaka, which she only had heard about.
The Being that rested in the royal womb was not an ordinary being
but was one destined for enlightenment.
The power of Great Being caused an abnormal heat in the abode
of Sakka Devaraja, King of the Gods (Indra). The Great God investigated
the phenomenon and opined: "The Being in the royal womb
has a great destiny; we must go and see."
So he conjured a covered wagon with a bed inside and transformed
himself into an old man. He drove the wagon to the rest-house
where the Queen was and stopped at the entrance.
The King of the Gods inquired: "Is there and one here going
to Kalachampaka?" The Queen said: "I'm going, Venerable
Sakka Devaraja said: "Then, just step on the wagon, my dear."
The Queen stepped out and said : "I'm heavy with child;
I cannot ride a wagon. I prefer walking behind you, o Venerable
One. But, if you please, put this basket on the wagon for me."
Sakka Devaraja retorted: "What are you saying! There is
on driver more skilled than I. Don't be afraid, step right up,dearie."
By the might of the yet unborn child, as the Queen was going
to step up on the wagon, the earth bulged up to the rear of the
vehicle affording her an effortless access to the bed inside.
She know then that this was a god. The Queen lay down and drifted
into a peaceful sleep, for that was a magic bed.
So Indra drove the wagon off, arriving, after.
There he woke the Queen and told her: "My dear, do alight
from the wagon to bathe in the river. Dress yourself with the
set of clothes that hangs overhead, there. Then partake of the
food that is in the wagon."
The Queen did what she was told to do, then went to sleep once
again. Eventually, they arrived at the city of Kalachampaka in
the evening. At the sight of the gates, the towers and the city's
ramparts, the Queen asked in wonderment: "Venerable One,what
would this city's name be?"
Indra answered: "This is the city of Kalachampaka, my dear."
The Queen retorted: "Is the Revered One joking? Kalachamjaka
is at least sixty leagues away from our city, isn't it so?"
Indra said: "It is, indeed, dear. But I know the direct
route." Then Sakka Davaraja told the Queen to step down
from the wagon near the Southern Gate. He said: "My house
is further away, but , my dear, you must enter this city."
Gaving said this, he appeared to move onwards,
disappearing toward his abode. As for the Queen, she stayed at
At that moment a Brahin guru living in the city of Kalachampaka,
who was a master of philosophy, accompanied by about five hundred
disciples passed by, on their way to bathe.
The guru looked from afar and saw the Queen, a figure of exquisite
grace and absolute beauty, sitting there at the rest-house. By
the might of the Great Being in the royal womb, as soon the Brahmin
saw the Queen, he was enraptured by the thought that this was
his younger sister.
He ordered his disciples to stay outside and entered the rest-house
The Brahmin asked: "Sister what township do you hail from?"
The Queen answered: "Respected one, I am King Aritthajanaka's
queen, from the city of Mithila."
The Brahmin asked: "For what purpose are you hear?"
The Queen answered: "When King Aritthjanaka was killed by
Prince Polajanaka, I saw danger, so I fled to save my yet unborn
The Brahmin asked: "In this city, do you have any relative?"
The Queen answered: "None, Sir."
The Brahmin said: "In that case, don't you worry. I am Udicchabrahmana
Mahasala, a guru leading the way to scores of disciples. I am
installing you in the position of my rightful sister. I'll safeguard
you and take good in the position of my you.
Pray, repeat after me these words: "You are my brother."
Then, touch both my feet with your hands and begin to moan and
The Queen acknowledged his request; she cried loudly, threw herself
down and held both the Brahmin's feet. The two moaned and wailed.
When the disciples heard the moaning sounds of the Brahmin, they
rushed into the rest-house, asking : "Master, what happened
The Brahmin said: "My dear disciples, this woman is my long
lost younger sister."
The disciples said: "Now that you have found each other,
you don't have to worry anymore."
The Brahmin order them to bring a covered vehicle and have the
Queen sit in it.
He told his disciples: "You go and tell the Brahmani that
this woman is my younger sister. And tell the Brahmani to take
all the best care of her." Having said that, he sent the
Queen on her way home.
There the Brahmani had the Queen take a good hot bath and prepared
a bed for her to sleep in.
When the Brahmin came back home from his bath, he gave an order
to invite the Queen for a meal, using these words: "Go and
invite our sister to come." And he ate with her.
The Brahmin looked after her in his own house. Not long thereafter,
the Queen gave birth to a son with a resplendent go
As a child, the prince played with other children.
Any child who would disturb or annoy him, the prince would grab
him firmly and beat him soundly.
He was physically quite strong and of a rather strict disposition
resulting from a subconscious inborn pride of being of pure royal
blood. The children were both hurt and scared, so they cried
When asked: "Who beat you?" they answer: "The
widow's offspring." The prince thought: "The children
always say that we are the widow's offspring. Well, it doesn't
matter; we'll just go and ask our mother."
So one day, the younger prince asked his mother: "Respected
Mother, who would my father be?" The Queen withheld the
truth: "The Brahmin is your father."
The next day, the prince beat the children again and when they
again said: "The window's offspring beat us", he said:
"Is the Brahmin not my father?" As the prince
was suckling at his mother's breast, he held her nipple firmly
and said: "Respected Mother, do tell me about Father. If
you don't, I'll chew off your nipple."
The queen could not deceive her son anymore, so she said: "You
are the son of King Aritthamahanaka of Mithila.
Your father was slain by Prince Polajanaka. To safeguard you,
Mother came to this city.
The Brahmin took me in and looked after me as his younger sister."
From that moment on, even when anybody would call him 'the widow's
offspring', the prince would not get angry anymore.
The prince learnt the Three Vedas and all the sciences within
his sixteenth year. At the age of sixteen, he was a handsome
figure to behold.
He told himself: "We'll get back the throne that was rightfully
our father's." So he asked his mother: "Respected Mother,
did you bring any valuables with you? I'll trade to increase
the value and get the throne of my father back."
The Queen answered: "Dear son, I did not come here empty
handed. We have three kinds of valuables. We have rubies, pearls
and diamonds. Any all these and regain the throne. Don't try
The prince told his mother: "Respected Mother, give me half
of the assets. I'll go to the land of Suvarnabhumi and bring
back an enormous wealth, then I'll win back the throne that belonged
to my father."
Having told her that, he asked his mother for half of the treasure.
He used it to purchase goods to be loaded aboard a ship on which
he would sail, along with other merchants, for Suvarnabhumi.
Then he went back to take leave of his mother. He said : "Respected
Mother, I am going to the land of Suvarnabhumin."
The Queen warned him: "An ocean trip is not worth it. The
benefit is scarce, the perils manifold. Don't you go . You already
have enough wealth to be able to again the throne."
The prince told the Queen: "I have decided to go. "
Thereupon he took leave of his mother by making a dexter ambulation
and went along to embark.
On that very day, there happened an illness in the body of King
Polajanaka. He retired and could not get up again anymore.
About seven hundred merchants boarded the ship. The ship rode
the crest of a terrible wave; it could not maintain its balance;
the planks gave way under the might of the waves; water rushed
in at many places; the ship foundered in the middle of the ocean.
All the passengers feared death; they cried and wailed, and invoked
and exhorted the gods for help.
But the Great Being did not cry nor wail, did not invoke nor
exhort the gods for help.
The prince knew that the ship would sink, so he mixed sugar with
butter and had his fill of this mixture. Then he soaked two prices
of plain cloth in oil and wound them tightly around his body.
He stood up holding onto the mainmast. He climbed up the mast
as the ship was sinking.
the others became food for fish and turtles;
the water all around took the colour of blood.
The Grate Being stood up on the top of the mast.
He aimed in the direction of mithila and jumped forwards off
the mast, exerting his great strength to clear a school of fish
and turtles, to a distance of one usabha (70 metres).
On that same day, King Polajanaka died.
From that moment on, the Great Being was like a golden banana
tree trunk in the waves which had the colour of ruby, swimming
in the ocean by the might of his shoulders.
He swam for seven days, but it seemed only one day.
At that time, the Four World Watchers had entrusted a goddess
named Mani Mekhala to look after all virtuous creatures who did
good deeds, such as taking good care of their mother, and who
should not die at sea.
Mani Mekhala had not insporbed with celestial joys, so she forgot
her inspection duties.
Other time, the Four Would Watchers had entrusted a goddess named
Mani Mekhala to look after all creatures who did good deeds,
such as talking good care of their mother, and who should not
die at sea.
Mani Mekhala had not inspected the seas for seven days. It was
said that she was absorbed with celestial joys, so she forgot
her inspection duties.
Other academics say that the goddess went to the Celestials'
Anyway, she recalled: "Today is the seventh day that I have
not inspected the high seas. I wonder what the situation is."
Upon inspection, she saw the Grate Being and she thought: "Should
young Prince Mahajanaka perish in the ocean, I'll never be allowed
in the Celestails' Society anymore."
Having so pondered, she adorned herself and went to hover not
far from the Great Being.