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Jing An Temple

Jing An Temple

Jing An Temple (jìng ān sì 静安寺) is a famous buddhist temple with a long history, the eastern wu (dōng wú 东吴) dynasty in the three kingdoms and relocated to its present location in the 9th year of south song (nán sòng 南宋) emperor's era (1216 bc). It has been restored several times since the yuan dynasty (yuán cháo 元朝) and was finally destroyed in Taipingtianguo (tài píng tiān guó 太平天国) with only dafou hall left. Originally located beside Suzhou Creek, it was relocated to its current site in 1216 during the Song Dynasty. In 1912, the country's first

Buddhism organization was established at the site. In 1921, the hall of the three saints was added and the present scale came into being gradually. During the Cultural Revolution, the temple was converted into a plastics factory. It was converted back to a temple following Jing An Templereconstruction in 1983. In 1999, the temple was renovated on a large scale and it became more charming. jingan temple loosely translates to mean: the hall of heavenly kings, the hall of the three saints, the hall of virtuous works and the abbot's chambers.

Unlike its name, which means "peace and tranquility" in Chinese, the small, garishly decorated temple is always crowded and lively. It is hardly a place for quiet meditation these days. Thanks to the unique location, visitors can expect to find curious foreign tourists and fashion icons carrying shopping bags along with pious Buddhists, mostly local old women, at the holy site.

Precious Hall:
The design for the temple strictly adheres to the style of traditional Chinese Buddhist temples. The Precious Hall of the Great Hero, or the main hall, is currently under construction. When completed, it is expected to be four to five stories tall. The wooden architecture will be an altexample of the typical Song Dynasty style. One of the best antiquities in the temple is a Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) copper bell, known as the Hongwu Bell, which weighs about 3.5 tons. It is now housed on the second-floor base of the main hall. To the east of the main hall is the Guanyin Hall, a place for people to pay tribute to the Goddess of Mercy. The rare female Buddha is one of the most universally beloved deities in Buddhism. In the center of the hall is a statue of the goddess made out of camphor wood. Standing on a lotus-shaped base, it is about 6.2 meters tall and weights about 5 tons. Opposite to the hall is the Jade Buddha Hall, where a 3.8-meter jade Buddha sits in the center. It is also the largest sitting jade Buddha in the country.

Best travel time: each April 8th of lunar calendar (about may of solar calendar), a 3-day temple fair held here, which is very exciting.


                                                   (Click to Enlarge)

Address: No.1686, Nanjing Road (nán jīng lù 南京路)
Admission Fee: 10 yuan (free entrance on the first and the 15th day of each month according to the Lunar Calendar 阴历)
Opening Hours: 8:00-17:00, except during buddhist holidays, when opening is at 5:00 a.m. Tel: 021-62566366
Public Transportation: You can take Metro Line 2 or Bus No.15, 20, 21, 37, 48, 113, 506, 921 to Jingan Temple.

Tags: Travel in Shanghai   Travel in Beijing

Last Updated on Tuesday, 26 May 2009 20:49

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