Monday, September 22, 2008

Big Bell Temple

The Big Bell Temple is a Buddhist temple located at the Beisanhuan Xilu at Beijing, China.

The Big Bell Temple was built in 1733 during the reign of Emperor Yongzheng of the Qing Dynasty . The temple's name came after the famous "Yongle" Big Bell that is housed inside the temple, which was cast during the reign of Emperor Yongle of the Ming Dynasty . Many music experts, including some from the Chinese Acoustics Institute have found its tone pure, deep and melodious with a sprightly rhythm. Its frequency ranges from 22 to 800 hertz.

Accord to


Baoguo Temple

Baoguo Temple is a Mahayana Buddhist temple located in Jiangbei district, 15km north of Ningbo, in Zhejiang, China. It is famous as the oldest surviving wooden structure in southern China, as the main hall of the present temple dates back to 1013 in the Northern Song dynasty.


The temple was originally named Lingshan Temple , but was later renamed to Baoguo Temple in 880, during the . The main hall was rebuilt in 1013, during the Northern Song dynasty, and is one of the oldest and most well preserved wooden constructions in China. The temple also contains columns of the Tang dynasty, a hall dating from the , and two halls and towers of the .

Today the temple is a tourist attraction, and many of its rooms and halls are used to house various exhibitions, including:
*Guanyin statues
* bronzes
*Ningbo furniture
*Traditional Chinese wedding attire
*Carved stone screens
*Miscellaneous architectural pieces from the temple compound
*Famous places around China


The temple can be accessed by bus 232 from Ningbo city. The ride takes approximately 35 minutes.


Standard tickets are 12 yuan per person. Guides are available for an additional fee.

Bailin Temple (Beijing)

The Bailin Temple , also known as the "Monastery of the Cypress Grove", is a temple and monastery located in Beijing, China.


Imperial Era

Construction of the Bailin Temple started in 1347, under the reign of of the Yuan dynasty, in an open tract of land east of the . The temple, the largest of its kind in the capital of , was occupied by the Sakya school of Tibetan Buddhism, which enjoyed great power under the Mongol emperors. The fortunes of the temple, though, were short-lived: in 1355 the Sakya were overthrown in Tibet by local warlords, and the Yuan dynasty would suffer the same fate only 13 years later: in 1368 Dadu was taken by a rebel army and pillaged.

The structure of the Bailin Temple mostly survived the event but the monastery fell into disrepair in the following decades, even though since 1421 the Ming dynasty moved the capital back to the North, naming it Beijing. Only in 1447 Emperor Zhengtong ordered a renovation of the monastery, and in the following years a small square developed in front of the temple’s main gate.

In 1644 Beijing was again taken by a rebel army, and shortly afterwards occupied by the Manchu. Apparently the Bailin Temple did not suffer heavy consequences from the wars. In 1694 a palace for prince Yong, fourteenth son of Emperor Kangxi, was built directly west of the temple: the prestige of the new neighbour resulted in the gift of a monumental bell and in a complete renovation of the monastery , on occasion of the 60th birthday of Kangxi. The works of renovation were directly supervised by prince Yong himself who, in 1722, succeeded his father on the Imperial Throne as Yongzheng. That same year, the new monarch donated part of his former palace to Tibetan lamas of the Gelug school, which would transform it, in a few decades, into the largest Tibetan temple outside Tibet, the .

The rise of such monastery resulted into a partial oblivion for Bailin Temple which, by the end of the dynasty, had become dependent on its western counterpart. However, the generosity of Qing Emperors and the wealth of the Gelug school made sure that temple was kept in good repair. In 1758, Emperor Qianlong ordered a lavish renovation of the buildings, part of his great project to shape Beijing into a monument to his power.

Like the Yonghegong Lamasery, Bailin Temple was not touched by the pillages of 1860 by and of 1900 by the Eight-Nation Alliance, because of the superstitious fear that Tibetan Buddhism inspired to the invaders.

Warlords Period

However, as the Empire came to an end in 1911 and the capital was moved to Nanjing, Tibetan Buddhism came to be seen as a feudal and non-Han religion and the temples entered into decadence.

According to the property register of the temple in 1931, the abbot was Master Taiyuan. The address for the temple was not 1 Xilou Hutong, but 4 Bailin Temple Hutong. The register records that there were more than 100 Buddhist statues, 18 cypress trees, one pine tree, a pair of steles, one stone spirit wall, one pair of stone lions.

In 1931, the Abbot Taiyuan of Bailin Temple was rather famous in Beijing, and was very active in the upper class circles. According to a memoir by Master Tanxu, Abbot Taiyuan was from northeast China: prior to his conversion, his secular name was Zhang Jiechen. His family was rather wealthy, however after his father died, the wealth was quickly trifled away by family members. In 1924, Zhang Jiechen became a monk under Master Tanxu in Harbin.

In 1925, Taiyuan came to Beijing. In the following year, the warlord Zhang Zuolin became the new leader of the Northern Warlords Government of China. Since Taiyuan came from the same area as Zhang, he soon became friends with Zhang’s Chief of Staff and thus was appointed abbot of Bailin Temple. In 1929, Master Taiyuan and a few Buddhist believers established a Buddhist academy inside the temple grounds. The next year, under the efforts of Master Taixu, the academy was reorganized on a larger scale. However, in 1931, the had a serious effect on the financial resources of the temple. In 1932, it was announced that the academy was to close. Since Taiyuan had always lived a rather luxurious life, he eventually decided he could not survive in Beijing anymore and moved to Sichuan, where he later died. Although Taiyuan was active in Beijing for only five or six years, his role in establishing the academy played a major part in advancing the study of Buddhism in Beijing.

People's Republic of China

The phenomenon of decadence aggravated after the in 1949. In , the temples were attacked by , who evacuated the lamas from the area and reorganised the buildings, including dormitories, stables, warehouses and shrines outside the main temples, assigning them to danwei. After this period several brick structures were built inside Bailin Temple’s walls and the screenwall was linked to the main walls to create a closed courtyard; the Drum and Bell Towers were torn down, and the stone lions, the Buddhist statues and two stone tablets displaying the rules to observe inside the temple disappeared. After the Tangshan earthquake , the flow of refugees dramatically increased density in and around the temple.

In 1988 Bailin Temple was designated by the government to host the Cadre Academy of the Ministry of Culture/Central Academy of Cultural Administration and the Beijing Historical Site Preservation Bureau, in addition to other private and public companies’ offices. In 1992 the government funded a renovation of the temple, which restored the original building but did not touch the new ones. Since 2007, the also established its headquarters in one of the buildings. In Autumn of the same year a public mill in front of the temple has been destroyed, as the road has been levelled for easier traffic.

Architecture and Artwork

The five main structures in the temple compound are laid out on a central axis. Proceeding from the front gate to the rear of the temple, they are as follows: the main gate, the Devaraja Hall , the Hall of Attaining Perfection , the Mahavira Hall and the Vimalakirti Hall or Hall of Bodhisattva Purity .

A horizontally inscribed plaque in the handwriting of Emperor Kangxi which reads "The Everlasting Cypress Grove" hangs on the fa?ade of the Mahavira Hall, while statues of the Buddhas of the are found inside. Behind this hall is the Hall of Vimalakirti, containing seven carved and gilded Buddha images dating from the Ming Dynasty.

To the east of the main hall is an auxiliary hall containing two large bronze bells 2.6 metes tall cast in 1707. Their surfaces were cast with bas-reliefs of coiling dragons and mantra intoned after a person's death in the hope of gaining passage to the Pure Land.

Among the valuable relics in the temple is a complete set of printing blocks for the Tripitaka carved in the early 18th century. The collection has 7,240 volumes with a total of 78,230 separate blocks. Carved of high-grade pear wood, the blocks remain in fine condition today except for some minor cracks. The work of carving took six years to complete and was begun in 1733 during the reign of Emperor Yongzheng. However, fewer than 200 copies of the Tripitaka were printed during the ensuing 300 years, one reason why the blocks remain in excellent condition.

The blocks were originally stored in the Hall of Military Eminence in the Palace Museum, but were later transferred back to the temple. They are presently being cared for under the supervision of the Beijing Library.


The Bailin Temple is located in Dongcheng District, Beijing. The postal address is: ''1 Xilou Hutong, Beixinqiao, Dongcheng District, Beijing'' .
Bailin Temple is normally accessible only to people related to the institutions hosted in it. The gates open to the public on Cultural Heritage Day .


The Badachu , meaning "Eight Great Sites," refers to the eight Buddhist temples and monasteries scattered across the Cuiwei, Pingpo, and Lushi hills in the Shijingshan District, at the foot of Beijing's Western Hills Scenic Area. Located along the outskirts of Beijing, it was restored during the 1980s and has since become a famous tourist destination.

There are a total of eight former Buddhist temples and monasteries in Badachu Park. These are the Temple of Eternal Peace , the Temple of Divine Light , Three-hill Nunnery , the Temple of Great Mercy , the Temple of Dragon Spring Nunnery , the Temple of Fragrant World , The Cave of Precious Pearl , and Zhengguo Temple.

Badachu Park is an attractive place to visit all year round. It has a pleasant temperate climate, remaining cool in summer and warm in winter. Visitors can stroll from one temple to another, enjoying the beautiful scenery and admiring the arbor and rare ancient trees. Some of these trees have been standing for over 6 centuries, but their roots and branches are still strong and in good shape. In September and October, when the leaves are turning red, crowds of tourists come to climb the mountains. There is a cable-car to the top of the hill.

Miaoying Temple

The Miaoying Temple is a temple on the north side of Fuchengmennei Street in Xicheng District of Beijing. The temple is also sometimes known by the name of "White Dagoba Temple", as in reference to the famous white dagoba situated in the center of the monastery.

There were temples built on the sites since the and dynasties. The temple's famous white dagoba also dates to the Yuan Dynasty. However, the present-building dates to the Ming Dynasty as well as its given name, "Miaoying", meaning "Divine Retribution".

In 1976, the temple and its series of buildings were seriously damaged by the Tangshan earthquake. The top of stupa tilted to one side, and the bricks and mortar supporting the stupa crumbled off, and many relics were broken.

In 1978, the Beijing Department of Cultural Relics undertook the task of repairing and renovating the temple. The courtyards, the four corner-pavilions, the Hall of the Buddhas of the Three Ages, the Hall of the Heavenly Kings in front of the dagoba, the Hall of the Seven Buddhas and the dagoba itself were repaired and renovated.

Lingyan Temple

Lingyan Temple is a located from Tai'an in Changqing , Shandong, China. The temple grounds are situated along the western . The temple has a long recorded history, the notable landmark of the 11th century Pizhi Pagoda tower, and the Thousand Buddha Hall which houses a Ming Dynasty bronze as well as 40 painted clay statues of life-size luohan from the Song Dynasty.


The original temple was established in the Yongxing reign period , during the reign of Fú Jiān of the Former Qin state. Gaining a greater reputation during the Northern Wei , the temple reached its apex of importance during the Tang Dynasty and Song Dynasty . There were over 40 different wooden temple halls located at the temple, composing more than 500 monastic rooms. More than 500 lived at Lingyan Temple during its height. Although the wooden halls were all reconstructed during the Ming Dynasty and Qing Dynasty , the stone pedestals at the base of the pillars in the Thousand Buddha Hall are the original work of the Tang and Song eras.

Pagodas and stupas

Lake Manasarovar

Lake Manasarovar or Lake Manasa Sarovar Hindi: ???????? ???; : ?????????????, ''Mapham Yutso''; ) is a fresh-water lake in Tibet Autonomous Region of China 2,000  from Lhasa. To the west of Lake Manasarovar is Lake Rakshastal and towards the north is Mount Kailash, known in Tibetan as ''Khang Rinpoche''.


Manasarovar Lake lies at 4,556  above mean sea level. It is one of the highest fresh-water lakes in the world . Lake Manasarovar is relatively round in shape. The circumference of Manasarovar is 88 , depth is 90 m and it occupies a total area of 320 . The lake freezes in winter and melts only in the spring. It is connected to Lake Rakshastal by the natural Ganga Chhu channel. The Sutlej River, the , the Indus River, and the Karnali River all trace their sources to its close vicinity.

Cultural significance

Like Mount Kailash, Lake Mansarovar is a place of pilgrimage, attracting religious people from India, Tibet and the neighboring countries. Bathing in the Manasa Sarovar and drinking its water is believed to cleanse all sins. Pilgrimage tours are organized regularly, especially from India, the most famous of which is the ''Kailash Mansarovar Yatra'' which takes place every year. Pilgrims come to take ceremonial baths in the cleansing waters of the lake.

According to religion, the lake was first created in the mind of the .
Hence, in Sanskrit it is called "Manas sarovara", which is a combination of the words ''manas'' and ''sarovara'' . The lake, in Hindu mythology, is also supposed to be the summer abode of swans, who are considered as very wise and sacred birds. It is also believed the Devas descend to bathe in the lake between 3 and 5 am the time of the day known as .

s also associate the lake to the legendary lake known as Anavatapta in Sanskrit and Anotatta in Pali, where Queen Maya is believed to have conceived . The lake has a few monasteries on its shores. The most notable of which is the ancient Chiu Gompa Monastery, which has been built right onto a steep hill. It looks as if it has been carved right out of the rock.

The Jains and the Bonpas of Tibet equally revere this spot with great enthusiasm.

Further reading

*Allen, Charles. . ''The Search for Shangri-La: A Journey into Tibetan History''. Little, Brown and Company. Reprint: Abacus, London. 2000. ISBN 0-349-111421.
*"A Tibetan Guide for Pilgrimage to Ti-se and mTsho Ma-pham ." Toni Huber and Tsepak Rigzin. In: ''Sacred Spaces and Powerful Places In Tibetan Culture: A Collection of Essays''. Edited by Toni Huber, pp. 125-153. The Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, Dharamsala, H.P., India. ISBN 81-86470-22-0.

Kumbum Monastery

Kumbum Monastery located in a narrow valley about seventeen miles southwest of Xining is a Buddhist monastery in Qinghai, China part of the Tibetan "province", or rather cultural region of Amdo. It was there in the former that Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelugpa sect of Tibetan Buddhism was born in 1357 and was later founded in 1583. Its superior monastery is Drepung, immediately to the west of Lhasa.

Origins:The Tree of Great Merit

According to one tradition, Tsongkhapa's father took the afterbirth and buried it here, and soon a sandalwood tree grew on the spot. Another version has it that the tree grew up where drops of blood from Tsongkhapa's umbilical cord had fallen on the ground. In any case this tree became known as the "Tree of Great Merit." The leaves and the bark of this tree were reputed to bear impressions of the Buddha's face and various mystic syllables and its blossoms were said to give off a peculiarly pleasing scent.

The four-storied golden-roofed temple built around the tree where Tsongkhapa is said to have been born is called Serdong or 'Golden Tree' and is considered the holiest place in Kumbum.

Two Catholic missionaries, the Abbes Huc and Gabet who arrived here in the 1840s when the tree was still living were fully prepared to dismiss "The Tree of Great Merit" as just another fanciful legend. "We were filled with an absolute consternation of astonishment," Huc noted in his famous book Travels in Tartary, "at finding that, in point of fact, there were upon each of the leaves well-formed Tibetan characters . . . Our first impression was a suspicion of fraud on the part of the lamas; but after a minute examination of every detail, we could not discover the least deception." Section of this tree are now preserved in a stupa in the Great Golden Temple .



In the 1360s Tsongkhapa's mother with the help of locals had a small temple with a stupa built on the site of his birthplace.

In 1560, the meditator Rinchen-tsondru-gyeltsen built a small monastery there, called Gonpalung for intensive meditation practice. At first, it had seven monks at a time, but soon expanded to hold fifteen.

In 1576, Altan Khan of the Tumed Mongols invited the future Third Dalai Lama, Sonam-gyatso, to bring Buddhism to Mongolia. After Altan Khan adopted Buddhism, he gave him the title Dalai Lama. "Dalai" is the Mongolian translation of "gyatso," meaning "ocean.".

On his way to meet Altan Khan near Kokonor, the Third Dalia Lama stopped at the isolated retreat by the holy tree marking the spot where Tsongkhapa had been born. He requested Rinchen-tsondru-gyeltsen to construct a larger monastery at this site and appointed him as the head lama. The monastery was founded completely in 1583 and built a fence around the "Tree of Great Merit". An annual Prayer Festival was inaugurated like that held in Lhasa.

The new monastery was called Kumbum Jampa-ling. "Kumbum" means 100,000 enlightening bodies of the Buddha. It is named after the apprarent 100,000 images of the Buddha Sinhanada on the leaves of the holy sandlewood tree. "Jampa-ling" means "Maitreya Cloister." This refers to the Maitreya temple built by Rinchen-tsondru-gyeltsen to the right of the precious tree.

The First Throne Holder of Kumbum was Duldzin Ozer-gyatso , born in 1557. In 1603, the Fourth Dalai Lama, Yonten Gyatso , stopped at Kumbum on his way from his native Mongolia to Central Tibet. At that time, he proclaimed the need for a study division to be built and for Duldzin Ozer-gyatso to be appointed as the head of the entire monastery. At Kumbum’s Monlam Prayer Festival of 1612, Duldzin Ozer-gyatso first ascended to the throne of Abbot and opened the Debate College, Pelden Shaydrubling Dratsang .

By the middle of the 20th century, Kumbum Monastery included thirty temples and a thousand or so houses.

Monastic colleges

Kumbum has four monastic colleges or faculties . The largest is the Debate College or Faculty for Logic, the Shadupling Dratsang. Most of its divisions use the textbooks of Jetsunpa Chokyi-gyeltsen , as at Ganden Jangtsey and Sera Jey Colleges near Lhasa. A few of the divisions follow the textbooks of Kunkyen Jamyang-zhaypa Ngawang-tsondru , as at Gomang College of Drepung Monastery and Labrang Monastery. The highest degrees of Geshe Rabjampa and Geshe Shayrampa are awarded at the Kumbum Monlam Prayer Festival each year.

Gyüpa Dratsang, the Tantric College, or Sangngag Dechenling Datsang was founded by Chojey Legpa-gyatso in 1649. The curriculum follows that of Gyumay Lower Tantric College of Lhasa. After study of the major texts and commentaries of the Guhyasamaja, Chakrasamvara , and Vajrabhairava ( systems, monks receive the Geshe Ngagrampa degree.

In 1711, Chuzang Lozang-tenpay-gyeltsen built a new Tantric College, Ngagpa Dratsang. In 1723, the combined Manchu and Chinese armies severely damaged the four great monasteries of the Kokonor region – Kumbum, Gonlung, Serkog and Chuzang and many monks fled. Soon afterwards, the Manchu commander asked the Twenty-first Throne Holder to convert the new Ngagpa Dratsang into a Medical College, and this was done. With the appointment of several famous doctors, the Medical College, Menpa Dratsang Sorig-dargyey-zhenpen-norbuling was opened in 1725. It became a separate college during the time of the Twenty-second Throne Holder. The doctors who are graduated receive the Menrampa degree.

The fourth college at Kumbum is the Kalachakra College, Dükhor Dratsang or Dukor Dratsang Rigden Losel-ling. It was founded in 1820 by Ngawang-shaydrub-tenpay-nyima. Monks at this college also study astrology and receive the Tsirampa degree upon completion of their education.

Current situation

Before 1958, Kumbum had 3,600 monks. At present, there are 400, as the monastery was affected by the PRC policies from the late 1950s. Of these, 300 are at the Debate College and the rest are distributed evenly among the other three colleges. Traditionally, the majority of the Kumbum monks have been from Amdo. As at Labrang Monastery, the rest have been Outer Mongolia Mongols , Inner Mongolia Mongols , Kokonor Mongols from the Amdo region east of Kumbum and Yellow Yugurs from Gansu.

Kumbum is now a major pilgrimage for scholars and tourism site, visited by many thousands of people a year.
Arjia Rinpoche is currently the Abbot of the monastery.

The Kumbum monastery is still very much a repository of Tibetan culture and art, including various sculptures, statues and religious artefacts.

Jingci Temple

Jingci Temple is located at the foot of Huiri Peak of Nanping Hill. It is the second prominent Buddhist temple around West Lake. Together with Lingyin Temple, it is called the jewel of the southern and northern hills. The temple was claimed as a national key Buddhist temple in Han's area by state council in 1983.


Jingci Temple was initially called "Huiri Yongming Temple".It was first built in AD 954 by Qian Hongji of Wuyue Dynastry for a famous monk Yong Ming. In South Song Dynasty, its name was changed to Jingci Temple, and the 500 Luohan Hall was built. The temple was destroyed and rebuilt several times in the history. The majority of present temple was built in 1980's. Specially, there is a newly forged copper bell, weighing over 100 Kilograms. On it carved The Lotus Sutra, with 68,000 characters.

It hosts one of Ten Scenes of West Lake, "Evening Bell Ringing at the Nanping Hill".

Jing'an Temple

Jing'an Temple is a Buddhist temple on , in Jing'an District, Shanghai, China.


The first temple was built in 247 AD, at the time of the Kingdom of Wu, during the Three Kingdoms period. Originally located beside Suzhou Creek, it was relocated to its current site in 1216 during the . The current temple was rebuilt once in the Qing Dynasty. It's most recent renovation was in late 2003.

Features include

Three Southern-style main halls, each with its own courtyard, dating from the most recent reconstruction :
* Hall of Heavenly Kings
* Hall of the Three Saints
* Hall of Virtuous Works

* The Precious Hall of the Great Hero, or main hall, currently under construction. When completed, it will be four to five stories tall
* To the east of the main hall is the Guanyin Hall. In the center of the hall is a statue of the goddess made out of camphor wood. Standing on a -shaped base, it is 6.2 meters tall and weighs 5 tons
* Opposite to the hall is the Jade Buddha Hall, where a 3.8-meter jade sits in the center. It is the largest sitting jade Buddha statue in the country
* Abbot's Chambers
* Ming Dynasty copper bell , weighing 3.5 tons
* Stone Buddhas from the Southern and Northern Dynasties period


Jing'an Temple can be reached by taking Shanghai Metro Line 2 to .

Jianfu Temple

Jianfu Temple is located on West Youyi Rd. outside south gate of Xi'an, Shaanxi Province. It hosts the famous Small Wild Goose Pagoda.


Jianfu Temple was originally the residence of Zhongzong before he succeeded as the emperor of Tang Dynasty. It was converted to temple on March 20 of lunar calendar in AD 684 , in order to dedicate postmortem fortune to Gaozong. Thus it was named as "Xianfu Temple" . In Wu Zetian's Tianshou 1st year , it was renamed Jianfu Temple, and also bestowed an inscribed board handwritten by the emperor. The famous Small Wild Goose Pagoda was built in Jinglong years of Tang Dynasty. Initially, the pagoda courtyard resided outside the temple gate, rather than inside the temple, but it was still a part of Jianfu Temple. Under the wing of the empire, Jianfu Temple, together with Da Ci En Temple, became prosperous. While in Dang Wuzong Huichang years when Buddhism was suppressed, Jianfu Temple was only allowed to keep 20 monks for daily maintenance, and it grievous days came. The temple suffered from the chaos of wars at the end period of Tang Dynasty, and was largely ruined. Only the Small Wild Goose Pagoda was preserved. According to the historical records of Zhezong Yuanyou years of , Jianfu Temple had been moved into pagoda courtyard at that time, integrated with the Small Wild Goose Pagoda.

In Ming Dynasty, Jianfu Temple was reinvigorated. There were five times of large-scale renovations, largely preserving the original pattern. In Xuande 1st year, Ming Dynasty, A Tibetan monk, Shaosiji from Hongjue Temple of Xiningwei, Shaanxi Province, was awarded a certificate from government, and came to preside over Jianfu Temple. Seeing the dilapidated buildings in the temple, he swore to rebuild it. The reconstruction was completed in Zhengtong 14th year, and Shaosiji appealed to government for its name. The current "Imperial Jianfu Temple" was handwritten by emperor Yingzong.

Jianfu Temple was renovated many time in Qing Dynasty. The largest renovation occurred in Kangxi 31st year. In late Qing Dynasty, more buildings were erected, including Sutra Library and Nanshan Gate.


Historical Relics

*Stone Inscriptions:
*Ancient Bells: A bell is preserved in the Bell Pavilion. It was built in Mingchang 3rd year, , weighing 8,000 kilograms. More than a thousand characters are engraved on its surface. During period of the Republic of China, this bell was broken by the army residing in the temple, so that the scene "Morning Bell of Goose Pagoda" receded from view for many years. In 1993, the historical relics office of Small Wild Goose Pagoda in Xi'an directed the rescue work and welded the bell. A new bell was forged in 1998 for tourists to hit.
In addition, there is a small iron bell hanging on the iron scaffold beside the Bell Pavilion. It was built in Hongzhi 7th year
*Ancient Pagoda Trees: There are more than 10 pagoda trees inside the temple, with age of over a thousand years.

Ji Le Temple

Ji Le Temple located at No.5, Dong-Dazhi Street, Nangang Dist, Harbin, is the biggest building group in the Heilongjiang province,. It was constructed between 1921 and 1924. The grounds cover 27 570 s and the buildings 5 186 square meters.

Jade Buddha Temple

The Jade Buddha Temple is a temple in Shanghai, China. As with most modern Chinese Buddhist temples, the current temple draws from both the Pure Land and traditions of Mahayana Buddhism. It was founded in 1882 with two jade statues imported to Shanghai from Burma by sea. These were a sitting Buddha , and a smaller reclining Buddha representing Buddha's death. The temple now also contains a much larger reclining Buddha made of marble, donated from Singapore, and visitors may mistake this larger sculpture for the original, smaller piece.


During the rule of emperor Guang Xu in the Qing Dynasty , Hui Gen, an abbot from Mount Putuo went on a pilgrimage to Tibet via the two famous Chinese mountains Mount Wutai and Mount Emei. After Tibet, he arrived in Burma. Whilst there, Mr. Chen Jun-Pu, an overseas Chinese resident in Burma, donated five Jade statues of Buddha to Hui Gen, who transported two of them back to Jiang-wan, Shanghai. Here Hui Gen had a temple built with donated funds, and died shortly thereafter. This temple was occupied during the 1911 uprising, and the statues were moved to Maigen Road.

An Abbot by the name of Ke Chen later had a new temple built on land donated by a Mr. Shen. The construction took ten years, and lasted from 1918-1928. Ke Chen also invited Reverend Di Xian from Tian Tai mountain to come and lecture on Buddhism in a magnificent ceremony.

In 1956, a ceremony was held at the temple by the Shanghai Buddhist Association to celebrate the 2500th anniversary of Gautama Buddha's enlightenment.

In 1966, during the Cultural Revolution, the monks made a living by selling handicrafts.

In 1983, Shanghai Institute of Buddhism was established at the temple under the Shanghai Buddhist Association.

In 1985, Monk Zhizhi Xuan and others made a trip to Dunhuang via Xinjiang. Shortly after their return, regular scripture lectures, meditation and other features of temple life were resumed.


*?-1942 Abbot Yuan Chen
*1942-? Monk Zhen Hua

Modern temple layout

Chamber of Four Heavenly Kings

The Chamber of Four Heavenly Kings contains the statues of Maitreya, Bodhisattva and the Four Heavenly Kings, who represent favorable circumstance. The chamber is located on the southern-edge, or 'front' of the temple.

Grand Hall

Also called the Great Hall, this hall contains many statues.
*Three Golden Buddhas. The central sculpture is of Gautama Buddha, the left Amitabha and the right Bhaisajyaguru.
*Gods of the Twenty Heavens. The Gods of the Twenty Heavens, covered in gold, line the eastern and western sides of the Grand Hall.
*18 Arhats. 18 unique golden Arhats stand in two groups of nine.
*Guanyin, Shen Cai and his 53 teachers. A large golden statue of Guanyin stands on at northern entrance to the Great Hall, with at her side and sculptures representing the 53 teachers of his life above.

Jade Buddha Chamber

The Jade Buddha Chamber is in the northern section of the temple, on the second floor. A fee of 10 yuan is charged to ascend to it. Some additional Buddhist sculptures are also viewable in the antechamber.

Public restaurant

The public restaurant is located on level two at the eastern edge of the temple and equipped with its own street entrance. Open daily, it serves a range of noodle dishes for five yuan per bowl, the most popular of which is 'double mushroom noodles' . Other dishes are served at moderate prices. Tickets are sold by color and this ticket is turned in inside the main eating room and your soup is then delivered to your table which you might share with others. Upstairs is a much more upscale restaurant at much higher prices.


The temple also contains a private restaurant for the use of monks and temple volunteers, which is at the western edge of the temple complex. There is a visitor services office adjacent to the southern entrance, and a Buddhist library is also on the premises.

Huacheng Temple

Huacheng Temple is the oldest and most prominent temple in Mount Jiuhua. It has a history of more than 1,500 years.


Huacheng Temple is the first temple and also the leading temple in Mount Jiuhua. It is said in Long'an 5th year, , Indian monk, Huaidu, built a small Buddhist temple here. During Kaiyuan years of Tang Dynasty, Tanhao monk was in charge and called it "Huacheng". In Jianzhong 2nd year, governor of Chizhou, Zhang Yan, got approval from central government, and moved the old board "Huacheng" to this temple. In Zhengyuan 10th year, Jin Qiaojue died at 99, and fellow monks regarded him as the incarnation of Ksitigarbha or Dizang. Ever since Huacheng Temple was dedicated to Dizang.

In late , the abbot was Guangzong, later called Guangchuan monk. In 1321 of Yuan Dynasty, the abbot was Zhenguan, later called Wuxiang monk. In Hongwu 24th year of Ming Dynasty, the abbots Zongling and Fajian expanded it to a Zen Buddhist temple. In Xuande 10th year, Fuqing monk of Linggu Temple in Nanjing moved to Mount Jiuhua to preside over Huacheng Temple due to his old age. He rebuilt Grand Hall of the Great Sage, Cangjing, Zushi, Jingang, Tianwang and Jialan Halls, and also expanded Eastern Halls. In Zhengtong years, the abbots Daotai, and later Dugang, Fayan, Faguang expanded Foge, Fangzhang, Langwu, Dizang Hall and Shijie, forming Western Halls. In Longqing 6th year, businessman Huang Longding of Anhui donated to rebuild the temple. In Wanli 31st year, the abbot Liangyuan went to Beijing and the central government bestowed purple garment on him.

In Kangxi 20 year of Qing Dynasty, the governor of Chizhou, Yu Chenglong renovated the temple and built "Juhua Pavilion". The temple comprised Eastern and Western Palaces, totally 72 halls. Thus, Huacheng Temple became the leading temple in Mount Jiuhua, called General Buddhist Temple. From Kangxi 42nd to 44th year , the emperor ordered his close servant to come to Mount Jiuhua to worship the temple three times, making donations and bestowing a board "Superior Place of Jiuhua". In Qianlong 31st year, it received another board written by the emperor, "Fragrant Grand Temple". However, in Xianfeng 7th year, the temple was destroyed, and only Sutra Library was left. In Guangxu 16th year, the abbot Lunfa and pilgrim Liu Hanfang and others donated to rebuild four halls. In 1926, Shi Rongxu founded "Jiangnan Mount Jiuhua Buddhist Academy" here.

The government of Qinyang County renovated the temple in 1955. But in 1968, all the Buddhist figures were destroyed. In 1981, the temple was rebuilt, and Mount Jiuhua Historical and Cultural Museum was opened. The preserved collection of more than 1,800 pieces was on exhibition. The temple has a land area of 3,500 square meters. On 8 September 1981, the government of Anhui claimed Huacheng Temple as a key conserved location of historical relics. In 1983, the state council honored Huacheng Temple as national key Buddhist temple in Han area.


Hanshan Temple

Hanshan Temple , literally Cold Mountain Temple, is a Buddhist temple and monastery in Suzhou, China. It is located at the town of Fengqiao , about 5 kilometres west of the old city of Suzhou.

Traditionally, Hanshan Temple is believed to have been founded during the Tianjian era of the reign of Emperor Wu of Liang, in the Southern and Northern Dynasties period. The current name of the monastery derives from , the legendary monk and poet. Hanshan and his disciple are said to have come to the monastery during the reign of Emperor Taizong of Tang , where Hanshan became the abbot.

The bell of Hanshan

The poem

Hanshan Temple is famed in East Asia because of the poem "A Night Mooring by Maple Bridge" , by Tang Dynasty , . The poem describes the melancholy scene of a dejected traveller, moored at night at Fengqiao, hearing the bells of Hanshan Temple:

The poem is still popularly read in China, Japan and Korea. It is part of the primary school curriculum in both China and Japan. The ringing of the bell at Hanshan Temple on Chinese New Year eve is a major pilgrimage and tourism event for visitors from these countries.

The bell

Two bells are currently used at Hanshan Temple, both dating from the late Qing Dynasty when the temple was last rebuilt. One was forged in China in 1906, and the other was forged in Japan at around the same time. The dedication on the bell was written by Japanese Prime Minister Itō Hirobumi. The original Tang Dynasty bell is believed by some to have been taken to Japan in ancient times. These two factors have roused some nationalistic controversy among Chinese and Koreans .

A new 108 tonne bell commissioned by Hanshan Temple and built by a foundry in Wuhan was completed recently, and is on its way to Hanshan Temple to replace the hundred years old Japanese built bell. The new bell tall 8.5 meter, widest diameter 5.2 meter.

Hanshan Temple in Japan

A Hanshan Temple was established in , Tokyo, Japan in 1929.

Hanging Temple

The Hanging Temple is a temple built into a cliff near in the province of Shanxi. The closest city is Datong, 65 kilometers to the northwest. Along with the Yungang Grottoes, the Hanging Temple is one of the main tourist attractions and historical sites in the Datong area. Built more than 1400 years ago, this temple is unique not only for its location on a sheer precipice but also because it includes Buddhist, Taoist, and Confucian elements.

Guangji Temple

The Guangji Temple of Beijing, located at inner Fuchengmen Street, in the Xicheng District, is a renowned Buddhist temple. It is also the headquarters of the Buddhist Association of China.

Originally built in the Jin Dynasty , additions were made to the temple by successive dynasties. However, the present temple was completed during the Ming Dynasty . It covers an area of 5.766 acres. The major structures in the temple divides between the main gate and four other large halls and many other temples.

The temple houses a wall of 18 Buddhist deities, many Ming dynasty religious relics and a library of over 100,000 volumes of scriptures in 20 different languages, some of which date back to the time of the Song Dynasty.

Guanghua Temple (Putian)

Guanghua Temple is Buddhist, built in in the Fujian province of China. Guanghua is 500 metres south of the cave.


In the period of Emperor Xuanzong of , Indian monks came to the temple to discuss and lecture on Buddhism. After its decline in practical use, Emperor Xuanzong of Tang built a tower there.

Created in 558, the first master of the temple is Jinxian, hence called it was called the Jinxian Court . In 589, under Master Shanwuwei , it was expanded in size and renamed Jinshan Monastery . Master Shanwuwei was one of the temple's founders who also visited Japan, so some Japanese Buddhists arrived here as well.

Major renovations took place in the and Dynasties.

As of 1949, there were 60 resident monks. In 1965, there were 57. During the Cultural Revolution, the temple is forcibly closed and turned into a factory, all statues of the deities were smashed, and all monks dispelled.

In February 1980, a provincial Putian County Guanghua Restoration Committee was created. Funded mostly by overseas Chinese, the reconstruction began four years later in December.

In 1983, the 36-year-old Master Yiran became the head monk of the temple. In 1990, the 24-year-old Master Xuecheng replaced him.


* Gaoshan Gate : two-story
* Tianwang Palace
* Jialan Palace
* Sanzang Palace
* Dizang Palace

There is a 10-metre stone staircase with 199 steps in front of the temple.

Guanghua Temple (Beijing)

Guanghua Temple is located on 31 Ya'er Hutong, north of Shichahai in Xicheng District of Beijing. It is a large Buddhist temple.

Grand Temple of Mount Heng

Grand Temple of Mount Heng, or Grand Temple of South Mountain is located at the foot of , and on the north of ancient town of Mount Heng. It is the largest temple on Mount Heng, and it is also the largest and most complete palace-style temple of in China. It is a major component of Mount Heng National Key Tourist Resort Zone.


The Grand Temple was initially called Heaven Governor Huo King Temple , and later, the name changed to South Heaven Genuine Master Temple . Its founding year is unknown. The earliest documented records show that it was built in Kaiyuan 13th year of Tang Dynasty. The temple experienced , , and Dynasties, having suffered six fires and undergone 16 large-scale renovations. At the end of Ming Dynasty, the temple was burnt in the war. In Guangxu 8th year of Qing Dynasty, the temple was rebuilt following the layout of Forbidden City in Beijing, thus it was also called "Little Palace in South China". The majority of the buildings have been preserved till today. During Cultural Revolution, the temple was regarded as "Four Olds", and suffered severe damages. The stone tablets, inscribed boards, Buddhist statutes and scripts were all destroyed. Starting in 1980s, continuous renovation projects have rehabilitated destructed buildings and statues.


The temple covers a land area of over 98,500 square meters. Along its axis there are 9 major buildings. From south to north, they are Lingxing Gate, Kuixing Pavilion, Zhengchuan Gate, Imperial Tablet Pavilion, Jiaying Gate, Imperial Liberary Tower, Grand Hall, Refreshing Palace and North Hind Gate. Its eastern and western sides accommodate Eight Temples of Taoism and Eight Temples of Buddhism.

The name of Lingxing Gate means abundant talents emerge and serve the country. Usually, "Lingxing" wouldn't be used to name a temple gate. There're only two exceptions in China, and the other Lingxing Gate is in Temple of Confucius. Kuixing Pavilion is also called "Panlong Pavilion" . It has double-eave two-curve roof and covers 139 sq. meters. It serves as an opera stage.


Three religions, Buddhism, Taoism and Confucius, co-exist in the Grand Temple of Mount Heng. Eight Temples of Taoism, Eight Temples of Buddhism and Imperial Library Tower represent the convergence of three religions. The temple enjoys great popularity among devotees. Large Buddhist festivals are held in Buddhist holidays each year. Pilgrims come not only from nearby Hunan and Guangdong, but also from Hong Kong, Macao, Southeast Asia and Japan. There was originally a statute of Mountain God in the Grand Hall, to which the past emperors all paid tribute. In early Tang Dynasty, the god was designated "Heavenly Governor Huo King". In Kaiyuan years of Tang, it was titled "Genuine Master of Mount Heng". In Song Dynasty, it was named "Heavenly Governor Zhaosheng Emperor". Today, the existent "Superior Emperor of Mount Heng" was rebuilt in 1983, for the original statute was destroyed in Cultural Revolution. There are also two "Treasury Houses" on each side of the Grand Hall. Facing from the hall, the one on the left side is designed for worship by living people, while the one on the right hosts the name boards of the deceased.

In 1990, the Chinese National Post Bureau issued a series of Mount Heng stamps , comprising 4 pieces. The first one, "Grand Temple", depicted this temple.

Foguang Temple

Foguang Temple is a temple located five kilometers away from Doucun, Wutai County, Shanxi Province of China. The major hall of the temple is the East Hall, built in 857 AD, during the Tang Dynasty . According to architectural records, it is the third earliest preserved timber structure in China. It was discovered by the 20th century architectural historian Liang Sicheng in 1937, while the older hall at Nanchan Temple was discovered by the same team a year later. The temple also contains two other halls, one dating from 1137, and one dating from the Ming Dynasty. In addition, the second oldest pagoda in China , dating from the 6th century, is located in the temple grounds.


The temple was established in the fifth century. In 857, the East hall was built on the site of a three story pavilion that had been destroyed. A woman named Ning Gongyu provided most of the funds needed to construct the hall, and its construction was led by a monk named Yuancheng. In 1147 of the Jin Dynasty, the Manjusri Hall was constructed on the temple's north side. In 1930, the Society for Research in Chinese Architecture began a search in China for ancient buildings. In the seventh year of the society's search in 1937, an architectural team led by Liang Sicheng rediscovered the Foguang Temple.


Unlike most other Chinese temples, the Foguang temple is oriented in an East-West position due to there being mountains located on the east, north and south. The temple consists of three main halls. The southern hall is called The Hall of Sangahara and was built during the Chongshen period of the Ming Dynasty. The northern hall is called The Hall of Manjusri and was constructed in 1147 of the Jin Dynasty. The largest hall, The Great Eastern Hall was constructed in 857 during the Tang Dynasty.

East Hall

Dating from 857 of the Tang Dynasty, this hall is the third oldest extant wooden building in China after the main hall of the Nanchan Temple dated to 782, and the main hall of the Five Dragons Temple, dated to 831. The hall is located on the far east side of the temple, atop a large stone platform. It is a single story structure that measures seven bays by four and is supported an inner and outer set of columns. On top of each of the columns is a complicated set of brackets containing seven different that are one-third as high as the column itself. Supporting the roof of the hall, each of the bracket sets are connected by crescent shaped crossbeams, which create an inner ring above the inner set of columns and an outer ring above the outer columns. The hall has a lattice ceiling that conceals much of the roof frame from view. The hipped-roof of the East Hall and the extremely complex bracket sets are testament to the East Hall's importance as a structure during the Tang Dynasty. According the 11th century architectural treatise, ''Yingzao Fashi'', the East Hall closely corresponds to a seventh rank building in a system of eight ranks. The high rank of the East hall indicates that even in the Tang Dynasty it was an important building, and no other buildings from the period with such a high rank survive.

Hall of Manjusri

On the north side of the temple courtyard is the Manjusri Hall, constructed in 1137 of the . It is roughly the same size as the East Hall, also measuring seven bays by four. On the walls inside are a variety of murals painted during the Ming dynasty.

Hall of Sanghagara

Located on the south side of the main temple courtyard, this hall dates from the Chongzhen Period of the Ming Dynasty, and was renovated during the Kangxi period of the Qing Dynasty. It is quite small, containing only three bays, and is nearly a square. Inside is a statue of Sanghagara, the guardian of Buddha flanked by eighteen other guardians.

Zushi Pagoda

There is a small funerary pagoda located next to the south of the East Hall called the Zushi Pgoda. While it is unclear as to the exact date of its construction, it was either built during the Northern Wei Dynasty or Northern Qi Dynasty and possibly contains the tomb of the founder of the Foguang Temple.
It is a white, hexagonal shaped pagoda built from bricks that is six meters tall. The first story of the pagoda has a hexagonal chamber that originally housed Buddhist statues, while the second story is purely decorative. The second story of the pagoda contains traces of Indian influence, especially in the decorative lotus petals on the corner columns. The steeple also has carved lotus flowers that support a precious bottle in the shape of a flower.

Fayuan Temple

The Fa Yuan Temple , situated in the southwest quarter of Beijing, is one of the city's most renowned Buddhist temples.

According to local record, the temple was first built in 645 during the Tang Dynasty by Emperor Li Shimin, and later rebuilt in the Zhengtong Period of the Ming Dynasty. The temple occupies an area of 6,700 square meter. The temple also contains a large number of cultural relics, including sculptures of ancient bronzes, stone lions, as well as gilded figures of the three Buddhas-Vairochana. The temple also features large number of Buddhist texts from the Ming and Qing dynasties.

Fayu Temple

Fayu Temple is one of three major temples in Mount Putuo.

Its grand hall was rebuilt in Kangxi 38th year , Qing Dynasty.