Maitreya Buddha

 

 

Maitreya Buddha is the Buddha who will follow Shakyamuni Buddha , and in that sense he is the Buddha of the future. He is also known as the Laughing Buddha .

Gautama Buddha believed that his teachings would last just 5000 years. Thereafter, he believed, the world would begin an inevitable and gradual process of degeneration and moral decline. At this point, he said, Maitreya will appear; not as a Buddha, but as a royal personality. He will win the admiration and faith of people. These people, who would follow the path of Maitreya, will transcend the suffering of old age and death. However, as they become immersed in their pleasures, they will pay little heed to virtue and morality. And there will be another period of generation. It is then that Maitreya will appear as the fifth founding Buddha:

Maitreya Buddha

It is believed that Maitreya Buddha resides in the Tusita Heaven that is reachable through meditation. From this heaven, he will descend to the human realm as a Buddha. Maitreya will be born as a Brahmin priest. He will renounce the world and attain enlightenment in a day. His arrival, it is believed, will be heralded by a decreasing in the size of the oceans so that he may traverse them easily.

 

The teachings of the Maitreya Buddha will be similar to those of Shakyamuni Buddha, with one difference: Maitreya Buddha will not teach esoteric Tantras.

Appearance of Maitreya Buddha

Maitreya Buddha is depicted seated, with both feet on the ground. This indicates that he has not yet assumed his throne. He is dressed in the clothes of Indian royalty, or as a beggar.

As a Bodhisattva, he is usually standing and bedecked in jewels. He wears a stupa in his headdess, and holds a Chakra wheel. There is a scarf tied around his waist.

The Chinese equate Maitreya Buddha's large stomach with his big heart. He has limitless generosity and tolerance.
With the coming of Maitreya Buddha, there will be an end to death, warfare, famine and disease. It will be the beginning of a new age of love and tolerance.


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