Queen Maya’s Dream 摩耶夫人的异梦

More than 2,500 years ago, on the Nepalese border of northern India, there lived a benevolent king of the Shakyan clan by the name of Shuddhodana Gautama. He ruled over the Shakyans from his palace in Kapilavastu.

The king had a beautiful queen called Maya who was loved by the people. One night, Queen Maya had a strange dream in which she saw a white elephant entering her womb through the right side of her body. It was an auspicious sign to her for the white elephant was the symbol of greatness. Then, she knew that she had conceived a child who would be unique. During her pregnancy, she was happy and healthy, and led a pure life befitting one who was to bear such a baby.
The king and his subjects eagerly awaited the birth of the royal child. It was an ancient Indian custom for a woman to return to her parents’ home for the birth of her child. So when the time came, Queen Maya obtained the king’s consent to leave the palace for her parent’s home. A royal party accompanied the queen’s sedan chair on the long journey. On the way, she stopped at a garden called Lumbini Park, where big, shady trees grew. It was spring and all the flowers were blooming in the park. With her maids around her, she strolled in the grounds, enjoying the beauty of nature. While resting under the shade of a Sala tree, she gave birth to a boy. Everyone around her was delighted at the event. After the birth of the prince, which took place on the day of the full moon in the fifth month of the year, the royal party returned to the palace. King Shuddhodana was filled with joy and there was rejoicing in the palace and throughout the country.
王后摩耶夫人长得端庄美丽,温和贤淑,深得人民爱戴。有一天,她做了个奇异的梦, 梦见一头白象由她的右胁进入胎中。梦后不久,摩耶夫人怀孕了。因为“ 白象” 是“ 伟大” 的象征,所以她想: 自己所怀的孩子,将来一定是不平凡的。怀孕期间,摩耶夫人没有忧郁,也没有烦恼,每天过着幸福快乐的生活。