Lama Temple is a gem. My favorite spot in Beijing. I spend some time in Beijing recently. Not my favorite city. Bad traffic and bad air, hordes of people, I find it hard to evening enjoy the vast history of the country’s capital city.
On my first trip to Beijing in 2009 I had a day off to roam the streets., I saw the usual stuff, the forbidden city, Tiananmen Square, wandered through a couple of hutongs. Typical stuff. I spotted Lama Temple, aka Yonghe Temple, aka Yonghe Lamasery and ended my day there. I do love me a good temple. From the craziness of Beijing, the place is a lovely respite. If you can overlook the tour buses and crowds, it does offer an interesting experience. Continue reading “Lama Temple prayers, Beijing”
Having recently relocated to Hong Kong from Shenzhen I took a Saturday afternoon to visit Wong Tai Sin Temple in Kowloon, Hong Kong. I love temples. Does matter which country, I’m drawn to them.
As far as Asian temples go it’s no old. Construction started in the 1920s. Leung Renyan arrived in Hong Kong from China in 1915 and started to preach the praises of Chinese diety Wong Tai Sin aka the Great Immortal Wong (a kick-ass nickname). The Immortal Wong is the divine form of Wong Cho Ping – a poor and hungry Chinese shepherd. He practiced Taoism starting in his teenage years. One one tale he could transform stones into sheep. That’s a party trick on par with water into wine.
A candle for Tianhou, the Mother of Heaven, and Goddess of the Sea, from a temple in Shenzhen China. While the following information is related to Buddhism, and Tianhou is part of the Taoist pantheon, the symbolism is probably the same:
Candles are a traditional part of Buddhist ritual observances. Along with incense and flowers, candles (or some other type of light source, such as butter lamps) are placed before Buddhist shrines or images of the Buddha as a show of respect. They may also be accompanied by offerings of food and drink. The light of the candles is described as representing the light of the Buddha’s teachings, echoing the metaphor of light used in various Buddhist scriptures.