Sunday, November 02, 2008

Temples in Guangzhou - Guangxiao Si (光孝寺)

Guangxiao Si is the oldest temple in Guangzhou. As the saying goes, "Before there is Guangzhou, there is already Guangxiao." The 1,700 over yrs old temple existed even there was a city here. However, the temple was most famous for being the place Huineng replied to the wind-banner koan after coming out of hiding, as well as ordaining as a Bhikku later. Above is the main entrance of the temple.
The laughing Maitreya Buddha inside the Hall of Heavenly Kings.
Heavenly Kings Virulhaka and Dhataratta.
Heavenly Kings Virupakka and Vessavana.
Behind the Hall of Heavenly Kings is always an image of Dharmapala Skandha (Weituo).
The Hall of Dharmapala Guan Gong.
The Grand Hall. At the time the monks were doing their late afternoon chanting.
The Buddha Shakyamuni statue in the Grand Hall, flanked by Ven Maha Kassapa and Ananda.
The Guanyin statue at the back of the Grand Hall. The Hall of Ksitigarbha.
The Bowl-washing Well. This is the well where Bodhidharma washed the Buddha's bowl. Besides staying at Hualin Si, Bodhidharma also came here to stay and teach for a period. More than 150 years later, Huineng also washed the same bowl at this well when he ordained here. So it has become a holy well ever since.
The Phra Buddha Chinaraj statue inside the temple shop. We can find the influences of Thai Buddhism here in the temples of Guangzhou.
The Patriarch Hall venerating Huineng. Unfortunately the entrance was blocked so I could not go in for a closer look. The Bodhi Tree, where Huineng shaved his hair and took the Bhikku precepts under the witness of 10 venerated elders.
The stone tablet chronicling the historical events that occurred under it.
This is the ancient pagoda marking the spot where Huineng's hair relics were buried after his ordination.
The stone tablet chronicling the hair burial under the pagoda.
This ancient Iron Pagoda was built in 963 CE during the Southern Han dynasty, but all that is left now is the bottom 3 layers. The top 4 layers collapsed during the last days of the Qing dynasty about 100 yrs ago.
The Hall of the Reclining Buddha, a Burmese Jade Buddha image. Burmese Jade Buddha images seem to be popular in China as well. It is also called the Wind-banner Pavilion as it was outside this hall where the 2 monks argued over whether it was the wind moving or banner moving. Huineng ended their argument by telling them it was their mind moving, awe-striking the assembly with his profound wisdom.
The Lotus Pond at the back of the temple.
Tourists feeding the large number of Koi fish being reared in the pond. Guangxiao Si is indeed a very impressive temple with the longest history in Guangzhou. I recommend everyone to visit it if you happen to go on a tour there.


Anonymous said...

Hello. May I ask a question? Why, in some of the pictures, why is the incense not burning? Why is it just in front of the altars, laid down?

Wayne said...

Bcos at those places they don't have any urns for people to put their incense or joss sticks.

Susan said...

Hello, Wayne, i am susan from, which is a site operated all over China, with its head office site in beijing. I really enjoy your blogs on Guangzhou. I am just wondering could i repost your blogs on I promiss you i will never make them for commmercial use. I just want to share your wonderful life in China with more people. Pls let me know your idea. Waiting for your reply. My

Wayne said...

Ok with me as long as it's not for commercial use.

Susan said...

Thank you Wayne, i will give you a link after i repost your article, and all of them would link to your blog.