Guangxiao Temple – Renowned Buddhist Site
广州佛教“五大丛林” 之 光孝寺

Guangxiao Si has been a famous Buddhist temple and pilgrimage site for millenia. It was one of the temples where the famous Chan (Chinese Zen) master Hui Neng practiced during the 7th century (circa 676 A.D.) and he even had his hair cut at this very place. Shown here, a detail view of the large golden Buddha of the temple.

Guangxiao Si, also known as the Bright Filial Piety Temple, is built on the site of one of the oldest Buddhist Temples in China, extending back at least as far as the 4th century A.D., and possibly all the way back before the founding of the city of Guangzhou itself around the 2nd century A.D.  Pictured here is the huge golden Buddha of this temple.

Hualin Temple – Renowned Buddhist Site
广州佛教“五大丛林” 之 华林寺

The Hualin temple was constructed during the Southern Dynasties. Legend has it that the temple was built soon a after the arrival of Dharma the Indian monk, hence the original name Xilai (literally “visitor from the west”) Temple.

In the year 1654 the temple was expanded and renamed Hualin Temple. It was then one of the five largest Buddhist temples in Guangzhou, with a large team of monks. The Five-Hundred-Arhat Hall was built in the last year of Emperor Daoguang (1821-1861). The statues of the Arhats are lifelike, in different postures and moods. There is also a statue of Marco Polo, the Italian explorer who came to China in the thirteenth century. The King Asoka Pagoda sits in the middle of the hall.

DafoTemple – Renowned Buddhist Site
广州佛教“五大丛林” 之 大佛寺

Dafo Temple is another of the four renowned Buddhist temples in Guangzhou. It was originally built during the Southern Han Dynasty, (917-971). It flourished during the Qing Dynasty (1645-1779) when King Shunzi and King Qianlong ruled. It is one of the most famous Buddhist temples in south China.

Daxiong Hall is located in the north of the temple and its gate faces south. The hall has an area of 1,200 square meters. Although it has a history of over 300 years, its scenery has remained the same.

Guangzhou Government opened Dafo Temple to the public after the Cultural Revolution. Guangming, the senior monk and vice chairman of Guangzhou Buddhist Association, was appointed master monk of Dafo Temple in 1981. He rebuilt the temple and managed to renew the inside and outside of Daxiong Hall. The 3 main large copper Buddhist statues were produced as well. More domestic and international visitors frequented the temple from then on. On August 9th 1993, Dafo Temple was proclaimed as a national cultural heritage.

In September 2000, Dafo Temple founded the first Buddhist public library in Guangdong province. The library is 664 square meters with more than 40,000 books and 8,000 volumes. The library has air conditioning and computers. It is a professional Buddhist library and occasionally Buddhist courses are offered for young people, or discussion classes and Zen courses.

Address: No. 21 Huixin Zhong Street Huifu Dong Road in Yuexiu District (near Guangmin square)
Metro: Gongyuan Qian Entrance D.

Haitong Temple – Renowned Buddhist Site
广州佛教“五大丛林” 之 海幢寺

Five renowned Buddhist temples in Guangzhou are Guangxiao Temple, Huanlin Temple, Dafo Temple, Haitong Temple and Changshou Temple. Haitong Temple is the youngest of the five, but still has a history of over 300 years.

The atmosphere of Haitong Temple is special. It was once a private garden when it was newly built over 300 years ago.

In 1653 during the reign of Shunzhi, Kongying the monk was invited to be the abbot of Haitong Temple by King Shang Kexi who ruled Guangzhou at that time. It was Kongying who originated the field and garden.

As time passed by, the acreage of the temple got smaller but the scenery never changed and you can still see a large area of lawn, arborous green woods and high old trees just as 300 years ago. The archaic plants in Haitong Temple are very famous with the most famous being artabotrys hexapetalus.

The atmosphere in Haitong Temple is different from other temples in Guangzhou. The impression is not as solemn as the other temples but rather vivid and full of energy.

There are many stone chairs in the yard. You can see people sitting there enjoying the sunshine in the afternoons. Sometimes, monks yellow robes pass by, and you might even catch some younger monks giggling as they take pictures using cell phones.

This is a temple that can bring you tranquility. Every day, you can see people shadowboxing, exercising and fan dancing. And there are also seniors playing cards. Do not worry that noise might disturb the ambience of the temple, once inside people are quiet and tranquility reigns.

Address: No. 337 Tongfu zhong road
Bus: 1, 16, 25, 59, 26, 220, 270, 191, 248, 530

Changshou Temple – Renowned Buddhist Site
广州佛教“五大丛林” 之 长寿寺

It is said that Changshou Temple was built by Shen Zhenglong, one of the senior officials during the Ming Dynasty in the 34th year of Wanli’s reign in (1606). The temple was rebuilt during the 3rd year of the reign of Kangxi (1696), by a monk named Dashan.

Dashan had visited many well-known gardens. He used his knowledge of landscape gardening to redesign and rebuild Changshou Temple to incorporate both religion and gardening culture. Loccated near Changshou road, this temple was the largest in area among the temples of Guangzhou.

The layout of the temple was very special. To the west of the temple, was a lake with a waterway leading to the Pearl River, bringing the tide in and out twice daily. At the south of the lake, there was a little hill heaped with stones, and on top of the hill, a gorgeous red house. This old house had an attic from which the Pearl River could be seen. There were 6 halls on the ground floor and to the north of the lake, a summerhouse with complicated verandas.

Beside the summerhouse, there were numerous flowers along the lakes bank and to the southwest. Lichi and longant. There was one other beautiful old house; gardens, a summerhouse and a veranda also located on the banks of the lake. All these man-made sights and natural views combined with each other perfectly. Unfortunately however, the temple was destroyed in the 31st year of reign of Guangxu (1905).

SOURCE – WIKIPEDIA, INTERNET , OWN SOURCES (not for any commercial or business purpose just to share information)