Members :Uno : The Dragon Reborn and the Signs
The common belief is that the signs proclaiming the DR's coming are only necessary for the people of the world to recognize him as the DR, that they have no function other than that. This common belief does not, in my opinion, fit with what we know about the signs.
According to the Wise Ones, Tigraine said that disaster would befall the world if she was not there when the maidens came to Tar Valon. Why should it be a disaster? Surely it would only mean that the DR would be born somewhere else? Possibly because people would not believe he was the DR if he wasn't born on the slopes of Dragonmount, but how many really know that he was anyway? And how many believe he was? In the words of Mazrim Taim "history would have shown it." Have any false Dragons had problems because they were not born at the right place?
The answer is that it is for the sake of the Pattern that signs are necessary, at least the first major sign. If he hadn't been born where he was, the Pattern wouldn't have recognized him as the DR. How can this be? Isn't it the soul that determines that he is the DR? Yes, it is, but he is only the DR if he is born at the right time, in the right age. Rand is a hero bound to the Horn, this according to Artur Hawkwing in tGH, he is most likely spun out in times where there is no room for the DR. In those incarnations, however, he isn't the DR because he didn't fulfill the first major sign; born on the slopes of Dragonmount. If he does proclaim himself the Dragon in those lives, he will actually be a false Dragon, and I believe this actually happened when Guaire Amalasan proclaimed himself the Dragon Reborn.
Well, what does it matter if the Pattern recognizes him or not? If he can fulfill the next major sign, namely taking Callandor from the Stone. Surely, Callandor would recognize the soul? Yes, I agree; Callandor would recognize the soul, but the Pattern would never allow the stone to fall, because it doesn't recognize the soul.
What else is needed for the Pattern to recognize the DR? Well, he has to proclaim himself. If he doesn't proclaim himself, he isn't the DR. The Pattern continues to spin out false Dragons until the moment the DR proclaims himself. The number of false Dragons increased steadily until Rand's time came. In the lives he didn't proclaim himself, as we saw when he traveled with the portal stone, there were even more false Dragons. The Pattern is probably trying to compensate for the lack of the DR by spinning out false Dragons: "The Pattern does not demand a Dragon, but the one true Dragon. Until he proclaims himself, the Pattern will continue to throw up false Dragons, but after that there will be no others."