Abheda, the Elder (Tibetan: ne ten, mi che pa. Sanskrit: Sthavira Abheda): the 16th arhat from the set of 16 great arhats, principal students of the buddha Shakyamuni.
Elderly in appearance, wizened with age, the eyebrows are long and hang down at the ends. With the two hands he holds up a small gold stupa, a symbol of enlightenment - the mind of the Buddha. Wearing the patchwork robes of a monk, red with orange strips, he also wears an inner garment of blue with long sleeves and a white liner. Seated in a Western style with the two legs extended downward and wearing Chinese style shoes, he sits atop a deer skin mat on a rocky knoll. In front, a rock formation serves as a table supporting a gold incense bowl, vase with a branch of red coral and a book.
At the lower right an attendant with a beard, white turban, variously coloured garments and ornate boots, stands holding a golden water flask. At the upper right, wizened grey trees, pockmarked and twisted stretch upward and across toward a range of mountains from which flow a torrent of cascading white water. The foreground is a dark green park along the side of the river bank.
"On the King of Snow Mountains is the noble elder Abheda, surrounded by 1,100 arhats; homage to the One holding an enlightenment stupa." (Sakya liturgical text).
The Sixteen Great Arhats are generally painted as a set. The full group would include the buddha Shakyamuni, the 16 arhats, the attendant Dharmatala, the patron Hva-shang and the Four Guardians of the Directions - Vaishravana, Virupaksha, Dritarashtra and Virudhaka.
Jeff Watt 5-99