An emanated form of a Buddha, often with multiple faces, arms, and legs, which tantric practitioners visualize themselves as. This is done in order to create for one's mind a close bond with the figure so as to be able to attain enlightenment, in the form of that figure, through such practice.
Tibetan: ཡི་དམ། yi-dam
J. Hopkins: Personal deity; tutelary deity; deity
Synonyms: Buddha-figure; Meditational deity; Personal deity