Amitābha, or Amitāyus, in the Mahayana Buddhism scriptures, is a celestial buddha. Both these words mean "Infinite Light", or "The Buddha of Immeasurable Light and Life". In China and Japan, the two names are often used interchangeably. However, in Tibet the two forms are never confounded. The major difference between Amitāyus and Amitābha being, Amitāyus means the Buddha of Infinite Life, whereas, Amitābha means the Buddha of Infinite Light. These two are essentially identical and are reflective images of one another.
In the ancient scripture of Pure Land Buddhism(a branch of East Asian Buddhism), where Amitabha is the principal buddha, he is known as the great saviour buddha. As a saviour figure he was never as popular in Tibet and Nepal as he was in East Asia, but he is highly regarded in those countries as one of the five “self-born” buddhas (dhyani-buddhas) who have existed eternally.
In this painting, Amitabha buddha is depicted sitting and holding in his hands a vessel containing the nectar of immortality, over a circular disk with lotus petals going round it, supported by a pedestal below. He is in a simple monk's clothing with sparsely open eyelids and a large halo behind him depicts the infinite light he has.
Material: Hand Painting in cotton canvas
Size: 25cm x 35cm
In Vajrayana Buddhism, Amitābha is known for his longevity attribute, magnetising red fire element, the aggregate of discernment, pure perception and the deep awareness of emptiness of phenomena. He is said to possess infinite merits resulting from good deeds over countless past lives as a bodhisattva named Dharmakāra.
Following the Pure Land sects, A monk named Dharmakara made a number of vows. People recite his name at the time of death with the expectations of being in the place that is known for extreme delight, this was his 18th vow. After accomplishing his vows, Dharmakara reigned as the buddha Amitabha in the Western Paradise, called Sukhavati, the Pure Land.
Amitayus is one of the five knowledge of Buddha and is the place where there is extreme rapture, in which all creatures appreciate unbounded joy.