Amidakyo (Amitabha Sutra)

Place of production
Era century
Heian Period
Height 11.8 cm Width 168 cm
Kyoto National Museum
The <i>Sutra of the Buddha's Teaching on Amitabha </i> (Skt., <i> Amitabha sutra</i>, J., <i>Bussetsu Amidaky&ocirc;</i>, also known as simply as <i>Amidaky&ocirc;</i>), is one of the Three Pure Land sutras (J., J&ocirc;do sanbuky&ocirc;). It describes the magnificent adornments (J., <i>sh&ocirc;gon</i>) found in the Pure Land of the Western Paradise (J., J&ocirc;d&ocirc;) and encourages the chanting of the <i>nenbutsu</i> (the calling of the Buddha Amida's name, ""Namu Amida Butsu""). This highly ornate sutra from the early Kamakura period (1185-1333) was written on gampi paper with margin lines executed in gold. The upper and lower margin spaces are decorated with tiny, thin strips of cut gold and silver leaf and gold and silver powder.

The inscription by the priest D&ocirc;kaku (1204-50), sixth son of Emperor Gotoba (1180-1239, r. 1183-98), at the end of the sutra, states that this scroll was written by the hand of the retired emperor Gotoba himself.

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