The Story of Buddha Amitabha
As a former king who came into contact with Buddhist teaching, Buddha Amitabha began to commit his life to enlightenment.
Buddha Amitabha translates to “limitless light” or “The Buddha of Immeasurable Life and Light.”
His work centers around the enlightenment of all beings and places emphasis on the power of compassion.
Buddha Amitabha opens his arms and welcomes everyone to his Pure Land, which is a paradise where enlightenment is all but guaranteed. In the modern-day, Buddhists think of Pure Land as more of a mental state than a physical place.
The enlightenment technique that Amitabha champions most is the visualization of the world as a paradise.
He teaches that one who sees their world as a paradise will awaken enlightenment energy.
The Lotus Family
Buddha Amitabha is the leader of the Lotus Family and is considered to be a figurehead of some of the most important and powerful Buddhas such as White Tara, Avalokiteshvara, and Padmasambhava, and more.
Being the head of the family that consists of so many powerful Buddhas and Bodhisattvas makes Buddha Amitabha extremely powerful and influential.
The Lotus Family as a whole represents the West, the color red, and the power of magnetizing.
The family aims to overcome the “poison of desire” and the Skanda of perception.
We see the significance of the West surrounding Buddha Amitabha in his red coloring representing the setting sun and the fact that the Pure Land is in the West.
Om Ami Dewa Hrih
Chanting Buddha Amitabha’s mantra “Om Ami Dewa Hrih” regularly will manifest beautiful things in your life.
There is no prerequisite or prior learning required to benefit from this mantra.
Reciting this mantra regularly will heighten your compassion, rid your surroundings of negative karma, and increase your ability to love. It allows you to bring yourself into a state of full awareness without any deception or confusion hiding the truth.
The meaning of the lyrics are:
- Om: The sound of the eternal world; many meditations start with this sound
- Ami: Ami represents the infinite and endless light that is embodied by Buddha Amitabha
- Dewa: representing the 6 desire realms and deva realms, Dewa connects this mantra to your true nature
- Hrih: this is a syllable representing compassion, self-respect, and dignity
This is a quick, welcoming mantra that offers its powers even to the most beginner practitioners of Buddhism.
It is said that once you recite this mantra 300,000 times, Amitabha will sit upon the crown of your head, forever protecting and guiding you.
Benefits of the Mantra
Many times, it’s our own mind that holds us back from connecting with our purpose and life path.
This mantra will help bring clarity to you so that you cannot be stopped by self-doubt, self-questioning, and suffering.
It is often our own perception of ourselves that hinders our life experiences, and Amitabha helps to clear out mental blockages that may give us an altered self-perception.
This mantra will purify minds from the 6 afflictive emotions and achieve the qualities of the 6 Paramitas.
The 6 Paramitas are:
- The Perfection of Patience
- The Perfection of Generosity
- The Perfection of Ethics
- The Perfection of Joyous Efforts
- The Perfection of Concentration
- The Perfection of Wisdom
Achieving all 6 Paramitas cleanses your mind and Buddha can be found.
The teachings of Amitabha say that you only have to look inside yourself for the lessons of enlightenment, which is why the clearing of the mind with his mantra is so important.
When the time of death is near, there is nothing better to do than to call on the power of Amitabha and his soothing mantra.
It helps remove all the mental blockages and fear to grant a safe and peaceful passing of consciousness.
The practice of “Phowa” is the practice of a conscious death, transferring our consciousness into the heart of the Red Buddha to be forever held.
Connecting with Buddha Amitabha
Since his foundation is compassion, Amitabha is considered to be the most welcoming and kind Buddhas to connect with.
Those who may be early on the journey to enlightenment or new to Buddhist practices need not be intimidated by Amitabha and only feel supported by him.
The mantra should feel unwavering, powerful, and soft.
It’s a blend of so many glorious feelings.
Buddha Amitabha’s mantra will align you with his compassion and lead you to the Pure Land – the land of happiness and self-assurance.
You will feel all blockages removed from your energy body and your physical body.
If you want to visualize Buddha Amitabha to feel further connected to him, he is often seen seated, with his hands placed in Dhyana mudra to help him concentrate. In more ornate depictions, he sits upon a throne made of lotus petals, surrounded by peacock feathers.
If standing, one arm faces outward with palm up, and the other faces toward the ground.
The beautiful thing about the depictions is that you can choose how he looks when you connect with him; perhaps that’s even more powerful and envisioning an illustration from someone else.
Beginners: Start Here
You now have a call to action: clear your mind, meditate, and focus on Buddha Amitabha’s mantra.
Repeat it continuously in rhythm and open your heart to his guidance, welcoming the feelings of bliss that this journey may bring.
Welcome also those feelings that are less than wonderful, but know you are loved and held through the experience. On your journey to enlightenment, find your own infinite light, just as Amitabha has done.
If you are not new to this practice, then stay here.
See this is a base meditation to come back to and a mantra to carry you through life.
The ways we connect with Amitabha at different stages throughout life can be surprising, yet powerful. May the Pure Land be the oasis of your heart and mind.
Image credit – @Getty
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