Himalayan Art Resources

Item: Amitabha/Amitayus Buddha - Amitabha (Nirmanakaya)

སངས་རྒྱས་ཚེ་དཔག་མེད། 无量寿佛
(item no. 60678)
Origin Location Tibet
Lineages Gelug and Buddhist
Material Ground Mineral Pigment on Cotton
Collection Private
Notes about the Central Figure

Classification: Deity

Appearance: Buddha

Gender: Male

Interpretation / Description

Amitabha Buddha at the center with One Thousand Armed Avalokiteshvara on the left and Green Tara on the right. The composition follows the Gelug Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism and the painting style is that of Central Tibet and most likely the town of Lhasa.

There are three main subjects in this landscape format painting. (1) Amitabha Buddha is red in colour and seated in a courtyard accompanied by the Eight Great Bodhisattvas. (2) Avalokiteshvara, in a standing posture, has eleven faces and one thousand hands. He is accompanied by four seated retinue figures. There are also four of the Eight Offering Goddesses standing to the right and left sides. (3) Green Tara is accompanied by Marichi on the left, orange in colour and Ekajati on the right, blue in colour. There are also four of the Eight Offering Goddesses standing to the right and left sides.

At the top left are the Three lords of the World: Avalokityeshvara (white), Manjushri (orange) and Vajrapani (blue). To the right of that are the group of three Tibeta teachers known as the Yabse Sum - Father and Sons. They are Je Tsongkapa, Gyaltsab and Khedrub. Continuing on the top right is another group of three figure: Shakyamuni Buddha, Maitreya and Manjushri. At the top right corner are the Three Long-life Deities (Tse Lha Nam sum): Amitayus, Ushnishavijaya and White Tara. Six gods and goddesses further decorate the upper composition; three on each side, presenting offerings to the four different groups of teachers and deities.

At the bottom center are three deities for purification, healing and removing obstacles: white Vajrasattva, blue Akshobhya Buddha and blue Medicine Buddha.

At the far left corner is the deity of purification and reversing cause and effect, Vajravidarana, green in colour. At the far right corner is the wealth deity Vaishravana Riding a Lion.

In between those figures along the bottom, on the left side is Shadbhuja Mahakala, blue in colour, with one face and six hands, in a standing posture and surrounded by orange flames.On the right side is Shri Devi Magzor Gyalmo, blue in colour, with one face and two arms, riding a beige mule, surrounded by dark coloured smoke.

Jeff Watt 7-2012

Numbered Image:
1. Amitabha Buddha & the Eight Great Bodhisattvas
2. Eleven Faced Avalokiteshvara
3. Green Tara with Marichi & Ekajati
4. Three Lords: Manjushri, Avalokiteshvara & Vajrapani
5. Je Tsongkapa & Two Students
6. Shakyamuni Buddha with Maitreya & Manjushri
7. Three Long Life Deities: Amitayus, Ushnishavijaya & White Tara
8. Vajrasattva, Akshobhya & medicine Buddha
9. Vajravidarana
10. Vaishravana Riding a Lion
11. Shadbhuja Mahakala
12. Shri Devi Magzor Gyalmo

Secondary Images

View other items in the Thematic Set: Painting Type: Landscape Format (Deities & Figures)