Himalayan Art Resources

Buddhist Deity: Amitayus Iconography

Amitayus Buddha Page

Subjects, Topics & Types:
- Iconography Description (below)
- Nirmanakaya: HAR #40369, 11161
- White Amitayus
- Red Amitayus
--- 9 Deity Mandala (Jetari Lineage, Kriya)
--- 17 Deity Dundubhishvara Mandala (Kriya Tantra)
--- 13 Deity Amitayus-Speech Mandala (Sarvadurgati Parishodhana Tantra)
--- 33 Deity Mandala (Siddharajnyi Lineage, Anuttarayoga)
- Amitayus (with consort) ('Revealed Treasure' Traditions)
- Standing
- Three faces, six arms, red (upper left corner)
- Three faces, eight arms, white
- Padma Tse Nying
- Confusions: Amitabha Buddha, Ashokottama, Vajradharma Lokeshvara, Manjushri
- Others...

- Amitayus Buddha
- Amitabha-Amitayus Conflation (HAR on Patreon)

- Peaceful Appearance
- Vajra Posture
- Red/white in Colour
- Long Life Vase

Amitayus (immeasurable life) is a buddha by status but appears as a peaceful deity rather than as a nirmanakaya form wearing monastic robes and exhibiting the characteristics of a buddha with the thirty-two major and eighty minor marks of perfection. The primary function of Amitayus is to promote long life and health. He belongs to the group known as the Three Long Life Deities.

There are Tantric mandala practices such as the Nine Deity Mandala of Amitayus along with forms of the deity where he is embracing a consort. Rechungpa, the famous student of Milarepa, received a special practice tradition of Amitayus from Tipu Pandita while on a trip to India. Upon his return he passed the initiation and teachings to Milarepa. This is known as the Rechung Tradition of Amitayus. As a meditational practice in the lower Tantras Amitayus primarily serves the function of a Long-life deity.

"Bhagavan Lord of Limitless Life and Pristine Awareness with a body red in colour, one face, two hands and with two long eyes glancing with compassion on beings, gazing on the entirety of migrators; and a smiling face, wearing the complete sambhogakaya vestments. Above the two hands held in meditation is a long-life vase filled with the nectar of immortality; with the hair in tufts, adorned with silks and jewels, seated in vajra posture, the body blazing with the shining light of the [32] marks and [80] examples." (Sakya Tridzin Kunga Tashi, 1656-1711).

Database Search: All Images, Painting, Sculpture, Mandalas

Jeff Watt 6-2021

(The images below are only a selection of examples from the links above).