Friday, April 21, 2006

Wak Hai Cheng Bio, 1820

Of all the Teochew temples in Singapore and Malaysia, this temple is most unique in terms of layout and roof ornamentation.

This temple was modelled after a similar temple in Swatow which had two temples built side by side. On the right temple lies the 'King of Heaven" while on the left is the 'Goddess of the Sea'. However, if we were to face our back towards the temple, the 'King' would be on the left while Mazu would the right.

Temple of Magistrate Bao , Hefei, China

Temple of Magistrate Bao

His temple was built on Xianghua Mound in Baohe Park in memory of Bao Zheng (999-1062) of the Northern Song Dynasty.

Born in Hefei, Bao Zheng was an honest official known as "Upright Magistrate Bao," who had once and his portrait carved on a stone, as well as relics unearthed from his tomb.

Street-side shrine, Macau

Street-side shrine

Photo by Priscilla Wegars, November 2002

The Da Cheng Hall, Taipei Taiwan

The Da Cheng Hall

The Da Cheng Hall is the main building of a Confucius temple, and the tablet of Confucius is placed here. The tablet is placed on a very high platform with steps leading up to it. In front of the Da Cheng Hall is a platform called the Dan Chi, where, during the Confucius ceremony, the musicians stand and young boys dance the six-fold formation dance. In the ancient times there was also an eight-fold formation dance, performed by 64 dancers.

On the left and right walls are the tablets of "Fu Saint" Yen Tzu, "CHong Saint" Tseng Tzu, "Shu Saint" Tzu Szu, the "Lesser Sage" Mencius, and the Twelve Philosophers.

LungShan Temple

Worshippers and Incense in Taipei's LungShan Temple.

This is one of Taiwan's oldest temples, and is situated in one of the oldest parts of Taipei.

LungShan Temple is filled with worshipers, candles, incense, flowers and tables full of offerings.

Photograph, text © Dennis Flood 2000-2006. All rights reserved.

Po-An Temple

Po-An (Bo An) Temple in Taipei, Taiwan.

Along with XingTian Temple and LungShan Temple, Po-An Temple is among the most visited temples in Taipei.

Photograph, text © Dennis Flood 2000-2006. All rights reserved.

XingTian Gong, Taipei Taiwan

XingTian Gong

After LungShan Temple, XingTian Temple (also written Hsingtien Temple) is arguably Taipei's most famous temple.

Photograph, text © Dennis Flood 2000-2006. All rights reserved.

Baiyun Guan

El Templo de las Nubes Blancas de Pekín es la sede de la Asociación Taoísta de China y el templo más importante de la secta de la Realidad Completa (Quanzhen).

Bai Yun Guan

Bai Yun Guan, White Cloud Temple Beijing, China, 2002 Incense smoke permeates the Bai Yun Guan.

Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies

Bai Yun Guan, Beijing

Entrance to the Bai Yun Guan.

In the 8th century, the Tian Chang Temple was built in Beijing to house a statue of Lao Tzu. Although it burned down in 1202, the statue was saved . In 1224, Genghis Khan ordered the reconstruction of the temple. It came to be known as the White Cloud Temple.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Zhang Ziyang Zhen Ren Gong Xian Ren Dong

The completed shrine hall, courtyard and pavilion in Spring 2002.

A temple in southern Shaanxi province dedicated to the immortal Zhang Ziyang, who lived in the area during the eleventh century. Also known as Zhang Boduan, he was a disciple of Liu Haichan and is well known as the founder of the Southern Lineage of the Quanzhen tradition, and for his classic work on Daoist inner alchemy, the Wuzhen pian, or Chapters on Awakening to the Real. For many years he lived in a cave on the southern bank of the Han river and it is here that he cultivated himself and obtained immortality. The town opposite this cave, on the north bank of the river, is named Ziyang after him, and the cave itself contains a shrine to the immortal.

Next to this cave there is a small valley that is the site of the new temple Zhenren gong.
The temple is called ‘Zhang Ziyang Zhen Ren Gong Xian Ren Dong’ which means ‘Zhang Ziyang True Person Temple Immortal Person Cave.”

Qinghua Gong

Daoist priests performing the Temple Opening ceremony at Qinghua Gong.

Qinghua Gong temple in a village on the outskirts of Xi'an. Members of the BTA attended and participated in the opening ceremony in December 1998.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Taoist Ritual

Monday, April 17, 2006

Bendigo Joss House, Australia

Bendigo Joss House

A visit to the Bendigo Joss House (house of Prayer) provides a glimpse into the Chinese culture and tradition. Significant as the only surviving building of its kind in regional Victoria, it continues to be used as a place of worship. One of Bendigo's original buildings, it is constructed from timber and local handmade bricks and is painted red in the traditional Chinese colour, denoting strength.

The Three Pure Ones

This painting depicts the assembly of Taoist gods and Celestial Worthies (The Three Pure Ones).

Top row: The Three Pure Ones, with the Jade Emperor on their left, and the Master of the Saints on their right. The inscriptions below them reads, “ rich abundance of the five grains ” and “ the incense gate prosperity“.

Copyright 2004 Brown University
The Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology

The Three Pure Ones

Celestial Worthy of Numinous Treasure, Lingbao tiazun

The Three Pure Ones are gods conceived as pure emanations of the Tao.

Copyright 2004 Brown University
The Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology

The Three Pure Ones

San Qing: The Three Purities (or Pure Ones)

From the White Cloud Monastery (Baiyunguan) in Beijing, head temple of the Complete Realization (Quanzhen) sect.

This is the central deity of the Three Purities, the Celestial Worthy of Primordial Beginning (Tiancun Yuanshi). As his name implies, he is believed to have spontaneously formed from pure energy at the beginning of the world.

From the website of Professor Joseph A. Adler

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Eight Immortals Crossing the Sea

Eight Immortals Crossing the Sea

The Eight Immortals (八仙 in pinyin: bā xiān; in Wade-Giles: pa hsien) are Chinese deities who are represented as a group and rarely individually. Each Immortal's power can be transferred to a tool of power (法器) that can give life or destroy evil.

Mausoleum of the Yellow Emperor

Mausoleum of the Yellow Emperor

The name of the Yellow Emperor was Xuan Yuan, who was said to be the chieftain of the clan tribe in remote ancient times, and is esteemed as the ancestor of the Huaxia nation. The mausoleum was said to be built as a sacrificial altar by Emperor Wudi of the Han Dynasty (206BC-220AD), who went by the place on a punitive expedition to Shuofang. It was repaired in the following dynasties without exception.

Longmen Grottoes

Longmen Grottoes

Longmen Grottoes lie 12 kilometers to the south of the Luoyan City, Henan Province.

Longmen Grottoes are one of the three most famous treasure houses of Chinese grotto art.

Spanning a length of over 1,000 meters on the hillsides along the Yi River, the Longmen Grottoes were first sculptured and chiseled around 493.

The extant grottoes include the Qianxi Temple (Hidden Stream Temple), the Binyang Cave, the Lianhua Cave (Lotus Cave), the Fengxian Temple, the Guyang Cave, the Kanjing Temple of the East Hill and so on.

Xuan Wu



Saturday, April 15, 2006

Taoist bureaucracy-heavenly emperors.

Under the Taoist gods, there are four Heavenly Emperors respected as Yu Huang (Jade Emperor) who governs other deities, and the other three who help him. Their positions and costumes indicate their status.

Yuquan Taoism Temple was first built in early Tang Dynasty, collapsed, destroyed, rebuilt several times. The temple blends with the surrounding harmoniously, which is an element of the Taoism. The temple fair on 9th of the First Month of Lunar makes up a joyful picture of local people and custom.

God of Upper Purity

Yuquan Taoism Temple lies against Tianjin Mountain. The temple got its name after the jade spring (Yuquan in Chinese). The water here is clear and sweet and the spring has long been a scenic spot in the area.

The statue of the god of Upper Purity in Yuquan Taoism Temple.

Guan Yu (關羽)

Guan Yu (關羽)(160219) was a military general under the warlord Liu Bei during the late Eastern Han Dynasty and Three Kingdoms period in ancient China. He played a significant role in the civil war that led to the collapse of the Han Dynasty and the establishment of the Kingdom of Shu, of which Liu Bei was the first emperor.

In general worship, Guan Yu's is widely referred to as Emperor Guan (關帝), short for his Taoist title Saintly Emperor Guan (關聖帝君). Temples and shrines dedicated exclusively to Guan Yu could be found in parts of Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, and other places where Chinese congregate. Some of these temples, such as the Emperor Guan Temple in Xiezhou (解州), Shanxi, were built exactly in the layout of a palace, befitting his status as an "emperor".

Guan Yu is revered as Saintly Emperor Guan (Simplified Chinese: 关圣帝君; Traditional Chinese: 關聖帝君; Pinyin: Gūanshèngdìjūn) and a leading subduer of demons in Taoism. Taoist worship of Guan Yu began during the Song Dynasty. Legend has it that during the second decade of the 12th century, the saltwater lake in the present day Xiezhou County (解州镇) gradually ceased to yield salt. Emperor Huizong then summoned Celestial Master Zhang Jixian (張繼先), thirtieth descendent of Celestial Master Zhang Daoling, to investigate the cause. The emperor was told that the disruption was the work of Chi You, a deity of war. The Master then recruited the help of Guan Yu, who did battle with Chi You over the lake and triumphed, whereupon the lake resumed salt production. Emperor Huizong then bestowed upon Guan Yu the title of Immortal of Chongning (崇寕真君), formally introducing the latter as a deity into Taoism.

Bok Eye


Sixth Moon, Day 24

Kwan Tai is the God of War and the patron of Hong Kong's police and gangsters!

An historical figure from the Three Kingdoms period (AD 220-265), Kwan Tai was later deified as a Taoist symbol of integrity and loyalty.

An ever-burning lamp stands before his statue in the colourful mid-19th Century Man Mo Temple on Hong Kong Island's Hollywood Road. Meaning "Civil and Martial", the temple is dedicated jointly to Kwan Tai and to the God of Literature.

Joss House, Winnemucca, Nevada

Joss House in Evanston, Wyoming

A Joss House in Evanston, Wyoming

University of Wyoming

Tin How Temple, San Francisco

Auburn Joss House, California

Bakersfield Joss House

Bakersfield Joss House Replica

"The goddess enshrined in the center of the main altar is Kwan Yin or Goddess of Mercy. She is the patron goddess of mothers and children. She sits on a lotus flower, the symbol of purity.

The figure on the left is "Tien Hou" or Empress of Heaven. She is the female counterpart of Neptune and is the patroness of sailors and travelers on the sea. It is believed that the Chinese immigrants enthroned her in the temple out of gratitude for her protection when they traveled safely over the ocean to come to California.

The god on the right is "Hua Tíao," God of Medicine, to whom the Chinese prayed during time of illness. The bamboo tube holds Oracle Sticks, which are used for divination. The Oracle Book would reveal the prescription of certain herbs, which would effect a cure for the sick patient."

From the website of the Kern County Museum:$119

Friday, April 14, 2006

Longmen Caves

The Longmen Caves, near Loyang, China
From the website of Religious Studies Professor Joseph Adler, Kenyon College

Fuxi, the first Sage

Fuxi (Fu-hsi), the first Sage, who created the diagrams of the Yijing (I-ching).
From the website of Professor Joseph Adler, Kenyon College

Thursday, April 13, 2006

The Confucian Temple

The Confucian Temple (Kongzi miao) in Taipei, Taiwan.

Photo from the website of Professor Joseph Adler

Friday, April 07, 2006

Sculpted dragon, Pingyao Confucian Temple

Sculpted dragon, Pingyao Confucian Temple

Picture by Chris Pitts, Sinologist and Expert Guide from his blog:
"Chris Pitts in China"