Devadhidev Tirthankar Parshvanath

In the Jambu continent on the sides of the mountain Meru, there is a mountain called Samabhutala (level-surfaced). In its 7200 miles territory there are clusters of planets.

Beyond it there are crores of Yojanas, and going beyond them, there are dwellings of gods like Saudharma and Isana.

Beyond this there is the tenth heaven which is known as Pranata. In this heaven the age limit is upto twenty Sagaropama.

After having enjoyed the twenty year’s Sagaropama life in the heaven Lord Parsvanatha’s soul deviated from the heavenly life.

There is a large continent named Jambudvipa having the area of one lakh yojanas (yojana = smiles). Its circumference has been typically described in scriptures which I am going to say now.

There was a city named Varanasi looking like Indra’s city in the celebrated Bharata (the country of Bharatas) abounding in full riches.

In that city, the danda (flag-rod) was only on the top of the palace ! and no danda (punishment) for people. There were thieves who stole the mind of the learned but there were no thieves who stole wealth of others.

How can the city Varanasi be described where the Sun-disc shines as a pot on the top of the palace and the beautiful Ganga the river of heaven shines in place of the fluttering flag.

In Varanasi the word like injustice was found only in dictionaries, but was no where among the people . There were donors in abundance, but beggars were very few.

There ruled an emperor-like king Asvasena who was being followed by hosts of kings and who was deeply engrossed in protecting his people.

King Asvasena’s crown-queen named Vama was attractive like Rati (the wife of cupid), and charming like Indrani (the wife of Indra) endowed with exuberant beauty, surpassing the heavenly damsel Tilottama, the most beautiful among all the ladies with curved brows pleasing with a mass of virtues and had a noble heart.

From her womb Lord Sri Parsvanatha was born. In that night Vamadevi saw fourteen dreams.

In the first dream, Vamadevi saw the elephant, in the 2nd auspicious ox, in the 3rd the lion with the mane, Mahalaksmi in the 4th, flower garland in the 5th, the moon in the 6th, Sun in the 7th and the flag in the 8th dream.

Vamadevi saw an auspicious pitcher in the ninth dream, in the tenth a lake full of lotuses, in the eleventh ocean of milk, in the twelth dream a temple, in the thirteenth a heap of jems, and fire without smoke in the fourteenth the dream. On seeing these fourteen dreams Vamadevi got up from dream- state.

On having seen the dreams Vamadevi was pleased. She began to recall the dreams repeatedly and started uttering the names of clan-goddesses of Jinesvara. Then she rose from there (the bed) and slowly approached the king Asvasen.

Then the queen Vamadevi aroused king Asvasena with sweet-speech from his sleep. The king also twisted his limbs out of inertia and arose from sleep.

King Asvasena asked, “Oh Queen, why have you come here now ?” Vamadevi answered, “Your Majesty ! I saw fourteen dreams like that of the elephant and other while I was asleep in my palace – chamber. Please tell me the indication of it.

King Asvasena said, “Oh innocent queen, you have seen much auspicious dreams. So your (new born) son will become a monarch or a tranquil ascetic.”

“You are right,” said Vamadevi to her righteous husband king ASvasena, accepted his words and returned to her chamber.

Next morning were called the experts of the dream – indication who gave the same reply. The good have unanimuity in thinking.

Vamadevi did not take extremely astringent, hot, pungent and cold food for protection of her baby to be born.

Gradually the nine months passed and when all the planets were in high positions, on the tenth day of the bright Pausa month of the Hemanta season Vamadevi gave birth to the illustrious son Lord Parsvanatha, whose lips were ruddy like the Bimba fruit, face like the moon, complexion like a blue lotus, who was soft like the inner stuff of a Banana, who was pleasingly fit to be respected by gods, demons and people and endowed with all good bodily marks.

Then immediately sixty four Devendras gathered together with devotion to offer holy bathing to the Lord on his birth.

Sixty four Devendras bowed to Lord Parsvanatha, praised hymns and carrying him in their hands came over to the mountain Meru.

Then (sixty four) Indras like Saudharma seated Lord Parsvanatha on the top of mount Meru and celebrated his birth day.

Devendras after having celibrated the birthday of Lord Parsvanatha and considering themselves blessed returned.

Then the gods showered thirty two crores of silver and golden coins and thirty two crores gems in the palace of King Asvasena.

Then Lord Parsvanatha being nourished by five foster mothers began to grow like the moon of the second day of the bright fortnight.

Lord Parsvanatha gradually attained youth and the father got him married with the princess Prabhavati.

One day out side the city, an ascetic named Kamatha arrived, who was a fool and hypocrite performing ignorantly austerity of the Five Fires bearing pains.

At that time Lord Parsvanatha, sitting in a balcony, asked his servants,”O Servants, Where are the citizens going today ?”

The servants replied, O best prince, an ascetic named Kamatha has come today and these people are going there to pay him obeisance.

Lord Parsvanatha too riding on his elephant which was like a rival to the celestial elephant Airavata with an excuse of sporting, came over immediately to that ascetic.

To the ascetic practising austerities ignorantly, Lord Parsvanatha told, “You indeed are practising austerity without knowing and that too, without compassion.”

He said, in turn, to Parsvanatha,” You are Prince and you are expert in sporting with horses but not in our austeric tendencies.

Immediately then by the order of Lord Parsvanatha, his servant cut wood into two with the axe and brought out from the piece of wood a unburnt snake alive.

Then the people hated the hypocrite ascetic and praised Lord Parsvanatha repeatedly.

Several years later Lord Parsvanatha pondered over the proper time, distributed alms (for one year) and took initiation.

Once upon a time Lord Parsvanatha himself was above physical conscence with his eyes closed in meditation, at that time the ascetic Kamatha, who had died in the wicked meditation and was born as a god name Meghamali, created hurdles (in Lord Parsvanatha’s meditation), but Lord Parsvanatha did not deviate even a little.

Lord Parsvanatha, on having attained the absolute knowledge and having lived for a hundred years attained the absolution.