There was once a king named Suddhodana and a queen named Mahamaya who lived in the city of Kapilavastu in the sixth century B.C.One day, as the queen was resting in her palace, she dreamt that a white elephant carrying a white lotus in its trunk entered her right side.A group of astrologers predicted that the young prince would grow up to be either a great emperor, or that he would turn his back on privilege and power to become a great spiritual leader. Some time later, a baby was born to the queen. He was named Siddhartha Gautama.Until one day, when Prince Siddhartha finally persuaded his father to let him go outside the palace walls to see the city. What Siddhartha did not know was that his father had ordered the city streets cleared of anyone who was old or sick. So when Siddhartha and his groom set out for their tour of the city in chariots they saw many young and happy people. However, they also happened upon a feeble old man who was lying at the side of the road. As this was different from anything Siddhartha had ever seen before, he asked someone to explain what was wrong with the man. It was only then that Siddhartha learned about how people get old. Siddhartha was very moved by the suffering of the old man. He journeyed out into the city three more times and saw a sick man, a dead man and a sage. These visits led to his realizing the fundamental truths of life. Siddhartha left his wife and son at the palace and set out to learn the way of finding salvation and understanding.At the edge of the city, he took off his princely robes, cut his hair and sent his groom back to the palace with his horse. Siddhartha wandered through the forests seeking understanding from wise men and ascetics. However, this did not bring him satisfaction or greater understanding.