Of the 8 medicine buddhas, Bhaisajyaguru (named after a sutra) is the main one. He may be alone or with the other medicine buddhas and Shakyamuni or with Prajnaparamita, or in a set of 51 deities. He has one head, two hands, and wears monastic garments.
This rare work depicts him seated on a brocaded cushion over a tall double-lotus base typical of Pala India. The eyes are inlaid with silver, the lips, nails, hem of the sanghati, and other features are inlaid with copper.
The lotus petals go round the back of the pedestal.
There is a leonine face with copper-inlaid eyes at the front of the cushion. In some texts, he is said to hold a lotus in each hand but here he only holds flowers in his right hand.
More often, he is shown holding a begging bowl in his left hand held in the meditation gesture and a fruit in the palm of his right hand.
His head is always topped with a lotus bud finial.
The fruit he holds is a variety of myrobalan known as arura. The above wears his sanghati over both shoulders although the right arm and breast are uncovered. The hem is decorated with beading and an incised geometrical pattern. The lower part of the lotus base is decorated with incised scrolls.