Our Amitayus statue is depicted in the Dhyana Mudra holding his ambrosia vase while seated in the full lotus prose. The statue features Amitayus with long hair dropping past his shoulders, fully coiled. Amitayus is the name given to Amitabha that is primarily associated with Amitabha’s longevity attribute. Devotees believe that Amitayus has the ability to grant them longevity. Besides Amitabha, Amitayus is also associated with the names Amida and Amitayus.
In Vajrayana Buddhism Amitabha is known as the “Buddha of immeasurable light and life”. This is a result of the infinite merit he accumulated in his countless lifetimes as a bodhisattva named Dharmakara. Similar to Shakyamuni Buddha, Dharmakara came from royalty and he renounced his kingdom to pursue wisdom instead of earthly gains. Therefore, he was given the name Amitabha which mean “infinite light”. Additionally, Amitabha is associated with longevity, pureness of perception and a deep understanding of the emptiness phenomenon. Amitabha is considered to be a celestial Buddha by Mahayana devotees.
Amitabha is a central figure in “Pure Land Buddhism” where he lives in a blissful land called “Sukhavati”. In the Pratyutpanna Samadhi Sutra, Amitabha encourages his followers to repeatedly say his name in meditation if they wish to join him in the pure land of Sukhavati. Pure Land Buddhism is an attribute of Mahayana which is primarily practiced in East Asia. The land of Sukhavati is described as being a land full of visual and sonorous delights. Click here to learn more about Amitabha’s pure land.