Oblivious to the world, King Chandana lies lost in slumber on his luxurious royal bed. Although his expression is serene, his sleep is interrupted by a vivid dream. The goddess Mātā appears before him and reports that the queen’s two brothers have abandoned civilization to go live in the forest. Chandana, resplendent in his striped gown and pearls, is shown twice in the miniature: dreaming of the goddess and then kneeling in supplication before her. The story continues on the back of the leaf, which depicts Queen Malayagiri’s bedchamber. Awakening her, Chandana tells her his dream, and she discerns its spiritual meaning: all attachment is illusion.
Two miniatures from the Chandana Malayagiri Vārtā (“The Story of Chandana and Malayagiri”), a Jain folk tale, Kishangarh, Rajasthan, India, ca. 1745–46, MS M.1060.3r-v. Gift of Paul F. Walter, 1984.