Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Akshobhya Buddha

མི་འཁྲུགས་པ། 不动如来
(item no. 3313881)
Origin Location Western Tibet
Date Range 1300 - 1399
Lineages Buddhist
Size 32cm (12.60in) high
Material Metal, Silver Inlay
Collection Museum der Kulturen, Basel
Catalogue # acc. #W.lld13881.R0065
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Deity

Interpretation / Description

Akshobhya, Buddha (Tibetan: mi kyu pa, sang gye): a principal buddha within Vajrayana Buddhism residing in the eastern quarter of a mandala and a minor buddha within the sutra tradition of Mahayana Buddhism.

"Arising in the eastern direction is Akshobhya on an elephant, lotus and moon throne; with a body blue in colour the right hand is placed in the mudra of pressing down." (Dragpa Gyaltsen, 1147-1216).

Occupying a central role in Vajrayana Buddhism, Akshobhya, by some accounts, is Lord of the 2nd of the Five Buddha Families of tantra and found throughout all 4 tantra classifications most notably in the anuttarayoga class. Akshobhya is also mentioned in several Mahayana sutras, the Vimalakirti Nirdesa being the most famous. It was in Abhirati, the pureland of Akshobhya, attainable only by 8th level bodhisattvas, where the famous Tibetan yogi Milarepa and the scholar Sakya Pandita are said to have obtained complete buddhahood.

Jeff Watt 9-99

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