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In this chapter you will read how tour guide will show you to tour around the temple.We aslo arrange Shaolin tmeple tours for you in China to see world famous Kongfu

Ladies and gentlemen,
Welcome to the world-famous Shaolin Temple in Henan Province. It is my honor to be your tour guide. This spot of interest became famous with the showing of Chinese feature film "Shaolin Temple" during the 80s; A great number of tourists from home and abroad have visited this place.
We are now standing at the foot of Mount Wuru (Five Breasts), which is situated on the northern slope of Mount Shaoshi, anoff-shoot of the Songshan Mountains. It is 13 kilometers northwest of Dengfeng City. A huge and lofty memorial archway over there serves as its hallmark. The main entrance to the Shaolin Temple is about one kilometer's away. Now I'd like to make a brief introduction to this scenic place which has a worldwide fame.
The Shaolin Temple was first completed more than 1, 500 years ago. In 495 during the Northern Wei Dynasty, Emperor Xiaowen ordered the construction of this temple, to help with the settling down of a famous Indian monk. Then another eminent monk came here from India to introduce the Zen doctrine. At the turn of Sui and Tang dynasties, the temple was made ever famous by the founding monarch of Tang Dynasty, as 13 monks who were good at martial arts had proyided protection for him at a critical time. In March 1928, a warlord burnt down the major buildings that caused severe damage to the temple. After the founding of the People's Republic of China, this derelict temple was renovated on many occasions under the auspices of the government. It was listed as one of the major areas of historical and scenic interest in China. Broadly speaking, the Shaolin Temple consists of residence compound, pagodas as well as two temples dedicated to the above- mentioned founding monks. In a narrow sense, the temple mainly refers to the residence compound, to which we are paying a visit to- day. Covering a space of more than 30,000 square meters, this area
is a place where abbots and ordinary monks live and observe Buddhist rites. Look, this is the main entrance leading to the residence com-pound. This is a three-section architecture with single eaves. Leading up to the gate is a stone staircase that is flanked by a pair of marble lion statues. On the lintel of the gate there hangs a plaque bearing Shaolin Temple in Chinese characters. This was the handwritten work by Emperor Kangxi of the Qing Dynasty.
Entering the gate you will be greeted by the statue of the smiling pot-bellied Maitreya. Flanking the main path are a dozen of stone tablets that are erected by foreign monks who have completed their studies in the temple. Among these one is dedicated by the daughter of a famous Japanese boxer who studied martial arts here from 1936- 46. By its side there grow a LOOO-year-old gingko tree and cypress. The majority of China's temples and monasteries are characterized by a group of architecture facing the south. The main buildings usually consist of a gate, a hall of Heavenly God, a Mahavira Hall, depositary of Buddhist sutras, the abbots' room, etc. All the structures are positioned along a central axis in symmetry and flanked by annex halls. This also applies to the construction of Shaolin Temple. In addition, there are also halls that house rare tablets and martial arts illustrations. In the forefront of the Hall of Heavenly God, there are two
sculptured fierce looking gods, known as Generals Heng and Ha. As the legend has it that whenever they entered a war, they would win by shouting the sounds of "heng" and "ha", Later, the Shaolin

monks adopted this practice while mastering martial arts. In the hall erect four statues of Heavenly Kings, which serve both as guardians of the temple and well-wishers on behalf of local people. Their missions were evident in the musical instruments they hold in their hands. The Belfry and the Drum Tower were restored only recently, owningto.the contributionandhelpofferedbypeopleofallwalksof life.
In front of the Belfry, there is a line of three stone tablets. The first tablet deals with conferrals upon Shaolin monks of ranking ti-tles, high pays, fertile farmlands and farm tools offered by Li Shimin, the emperor of the Tang Dynasty for their assistance. It bears the autograph handwritten by the monarch.
The second tablet is known as the Trinity Tablet. The figure de-picted by it is an embodiment of Buddhism, Taoism and the Confu-cian School. Given the fact that the three schools fought with each other time and again in other parts of China, this harmonious coexis-tence of the three is admirable.
The third tablet bears a poem written by Emperor Qianlong in September 1750. This poem deals with the scene when he paid an imperial visit to the Temple.
Now we are approaching the lofty Mahavira Hall, a structure rebuilt in 1988. Enshrined in the middle of the hall are a group of statues including that of Satyamuni. As China adopts a policy of reli-gious freedom, quite a few pilgrims have paid their homage here.
After turning around the Mahavira Hall and proceeding further northward, there is the brand-new Depositary of Buddhist sutras. At the foot of the staircase leading up to the gate, there places a big iron pot, which was cast in the Ming Dynasty and weighs 1, 300 jin (one jin equals half a kilogramme). This pot is said to be used to cook meal for as many as 2,000 monks. In the heyday of the Shaolin Tem-pie, the temple boasted possessing a total of more than 14, 000 mu (one mu equals 1/15 hectare) farmland, and more than 5,000 roomunits of halls and pavilions.
Proceeding further northward, we come to the Abbots' Room, or the fifth group of buildings of the temple. A bronze statue dedi-cated to Bodhidharma, or the founder of the Zen sect, is enshrined in the center of the room. On the advice of his master, this eminent monk went to China to practice Buddhism. He first came to Guangzhou, then proceeded to Jinling (Nanjing) and eventually set-tled down at Shaolin Temple. It is said that to cross the Yangtze Riv-er, he borrowed a reed from an old laundrywoman, and crossed the river on it. In the back of the statue hangs a piece of painting depict-ing this scene. This is worshipped and cherished by monks of the Temple.
Bodhidharma reached the Shaolin Temple in 527 and settled down. With his face against the wall, he sat alone in meditation for nine years in a natural stone cave in the back of the temple. At a re-sult, the shadow of his face and body was imprinted on the wall, hence the Stone for Facing the Wall.
This founder of the Zen sect developed a set of "Arhat boxing" in an effort to relax himself after prolonged sitting in meditation. Later, his disciples perfected this school of Chinese boxing and made it a must for every monk. In this s~nse, the Shaolin Temple is also known as a place famous for its martial arts, in addition to the Cra-dle of Zen Sect.
The tradition has it that in the end, Bodhidharma retired and left the temple. It is said that he died from poison on the bank of Luo River and buried by the Mount Xionger (in today's Yiyang County, Henan Province). Another legend has it that he returned to hometown in India with his shoes in his hands.
The sixth group of architectures consists mainly of Lixue (Standing in the Snow) Pavilion, which was dedicated to Bodhidhar-rna and Huike, his pious follower and the second founder of Zen. It is said that in a snowy winter, Huike who was deep in snow standing outside asked his master Bodhidharma to pass on teachings to him.

But he was refused by his master. At last, Bodhidharma replied that unless it snowed in scarlet flakes, he would not meet his demand. When hearing this, Huike cut off his left arm with the sword and went round the courtyard, his blood dripping into white snow. Deeply moved by this, Bodhidharma gave grand ceremony and passed his mantle and alms bowl as well as teachings to him. Later, Huike became the first prominent Chinese abbot of the Shaolin Tem-ple .
The last and the rearmost buildings include Pilu (Vairocana) Hall. This used to be where the monks practice Shaolin School of Chinese boxing, a kind of boxing that is famous for its leg move-ment. Ages of hard work left 48 deep hollows on the brick ground. Today, an annual international festival concerning martial arts is ob-served here.
Aside from martial arts practice, the Pilu Hall is also known for Buddhist treasures it houses. Enshrined in the middle of the hall are two statues of Buddha. The one in the rear is a bronze one cast dur-ing the reign of Emperor Jiajing of the Ming Dynasty. A Burmese lay Buddhist, Yang Guangfo, donated the other one placed in the front in 1989. It was made of marble and inlaid with jams and gold.
On the wall in the north there is a mural that was painted during the Ming Dynasty. Featuring 500 Arhats who were received by Vairocana, this piece of mural is seven meters tall and covers a space of over 300 square meters. The Arhats are different from each other in complexion, pose and costume. The skin colors are also different as a varying result of oxidation of pigment.
This concludes our visit to the Shaolin Temple. To sum up it may be said that this temple is famous for four reasons: it is the cra-dle of Zen sect and the Shaolin School of Chinese Boxing; it is also a treasure house full of cultural and religious relics; at last, this temple serves as a major tourist site attractive to sightseers from both home and abroad.
Thank you for your attention. Hope to see you again.
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Ladies and gentlemen,
I'd like to take this opportunity to introduce myself "to you all. (Introduction of yourself to the guests.) I am happy to have this op-portunity to show you round the Shaolin Temple. I hope you will lend your kindly cooperation during this tour. Thank you in advance.
Why the Shaolin Temple is so popular? There are two reasons for this.
In the first place, it serves as the birthplace of Zen sect, a branch of Chinese Buddhism. A major branch of Buddhism, the Zen sect is an embodiment of local Chinese religions and Confucian doc-trines that exerts widespread influence upon the Chinese culture. The
.Zen stands for deep meditation and the Zen sect advocates being se-rious to everything, thus the practice of Buddhism. The Zen sect pays attention to the result instead of means. It holds that everybody is Buddha-inclined and this is only shrouded by worldly ideas. As long as one is serious with each matter, the Buddhism is thus ob-served.
The way to practice Zen sect is to sit in meditation with one's face against the wall. It is widely believed that Bodhidharma, the founder of the Zen sect, had sat for nine years. As a result of this, his shadow was imprinted deep intoa wall on the opposite.
Another reason for the popularity enjoyed by the Shaolin Tem-ple lies in the martial arts, which enjoys a tradition of some 2, 000
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years. It is considered that the Shaoling Temple is one of the main birthplaces of martial arts. The Shaolin branch of Chinese boxing epitomized various schools prevalent in northern China and was praised widely by Chinese martial arts practitioners.
Bodhidharma developed a set of physical exercises to help his disciples to get rid of fatigue stemmed from prolonged sitting in med-itation. After ages of development, a special branch of martial arts emerged.
The Shaolin Temple was first completed in 495, during the reign of Northern Wei Dynasty. In 527, Bodhidharma, the disciple of Sakyamuni of the 28th generation came here to practice Zen creed. In late Sui Dynasty, 13 monks who were good at club-wielding helped save the life of the soon-to-be emperor of the Tang Dynasty, Li Shimin. After his enthronement, Li conferred upon many titles, farmlands to the Temple and made it known far and near. During the Song and Ming dynasties, the Temple boasted 14, 000 mu of farmland, more than 5,000 room-units of structures and over 2,000 residence monks. In late Qing Dynasty, the Temple began to de-cline. In 1928, a warlord set fire to the temple and damaged many buildings. Most of the architectures we are today visiting were rebuilt later.
Ladies and gentlemen, we are now approaching the scenic area of the Shaolin Temple. The Songshan Mountains we are seeing on the way consists of two hills, Mount Taishi and Mount Shaoshi. The Shaolin Temple is situated at the foot of Mount Shaoshi and covered by dense forests. Hence the name of Shaolin Temple. Broadly speaking, the Shaoling Temple refers to residence compound, pago-das, temples dedicated to the first founder and the second founder of Zen sect. Strictly speaking, this site consists of residence compound and pagodas to which we are going to pay a visit.
With the screening of a feature film concerning the Shaolin Temple a dozen years ago, this place of interest came to fame overnight. Tourists from home and abroad thronged here and a bian-
Selected Tour Commentaries
nual international festival featuring martial arts has been held. What is more, more than 30 schools offering martial arts lectures were founded and more than 10,000 students have graduated. Many of them come from other countries.
Well, here we are. Everybody please get off the coach.
We are now standing in front of Shanmen (mountain entrance) to the Temple. Looking up at the plaque hanging above the lintel, you will find the plaque bears three Chinese characters, Shaolin Si, or the name of the Temple. This is said to be handwritten by Emper-or Kangxi of the Qing Dynasty. This work is very precious because the emperor seldom wrote.
This statue is dedicated to Maitreya, who was thought as the fu-ture successor to Buddha. It is one of the Buddhist teachings which says that one must keep to be optimistic in order to enjoy himself as well as hap.piness and longevity. This is the depositary of stone tablets, a symbol of interaction between the temple and the world.
It is said that there used to be an alley here. It was flanked by 18 wooden figures that could automatically fight with newcomers. Only those that were lucky enough to win the fight were eligible to become a monk. Those who also won the fight after long-time culti-vation were allowed to graduate and practice Buddhism elsewhere.
This kind of tree is known as ginkgo. It has been here for thou-sands of years and has not born seeds yet. So it is also called as "Luo-han (Arhat) tree".
The hall on the left is known as Hall of Demonstrating Hammer Movements. It shows some bodily movements of Shaolin boxing through clay figures. People used to say that one could master this kind of boxing in three minutes according to the statues:
This is the Hall of Heavenly Kings. These two imposing statues were dedicated to the Ferocious Gigantic guardians. The musical in-struments in their hands symbolize good weather for the crops.
Now take a look at this stone tablet. It is the most valuable one of all the tablets this temple holds. Carved 1,200 years ago, it de-236
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picts how Emperor Taizong of the Tang Dynasty commended 13 monks who once helped save his life. The emperor is said to have au-tographed on the tablet.
The belfry and the Drum Tower were rebuilt in commemoration of the Temple's founding for 1,500 years. Enshrined on the ground floor of the belfry is a statue dedicated to Ksitigarbha, or Dizang in Chinese. He was the Bodhisattva that saved all the living creatures in Heaven and in Hell. He was believed to have possessed an unlimited amount of the best strains of seeds.
We are now approaching the major structure of the temple, Mahavira Hall, which serves as the center of Buddhist service. The hall contains statues dedicated to three famous figures of Buddhism, who are in control of three different worlds in terms of space and time. The one on the left was dedicated to Amitabha, the supreme ruler of Western Paradise. According to Buddhist sutras, this world is characterized by "beautiful scenery and aroma as well as melodic music. The one on the right is the Bhaisajya-guru, founder of the so-called Eastern Pure Glazed World. It is said that people living there were free of all kinds of illnesses. The statue situated in the center is dedicated to Sakyamuni, the ruler of the present world of Saha. This is an imperfect world where people suffer from aging, illness, death and all kinds of hardship. Flanking these three statues are sculptures dedicated to 18 Arhats. The arhat is a rank title of the Buddhist hier-archy.
This piece of ironware weighs 1, 300 jin -(one jin equals half a kilogramme) and was cast during the reign of Emperor Wanli of the Ming Dynasty. It was used as a cooker. Since the temple once boast-ed as many as 2,000 monks, it was not uncommon that such a big pot was used.
The animal bearing the tablet is not a tortoise, but a Chinese mythical animal "bixi", who is said to be one of nine sons of the Dragon King and the one having the greatest strength. So there is no wonder that he is the right one to carry heavy stone tablets. Accord-
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ing to the local tradition that the one who touches the animal will be free of worry and illness.
This structure is known as the Depositary of Buddhist Sutras. Rare books concerning secrets of martial arts were also safely kept here.
This room was a place where the abbots lived. Emperor Qian-long of the Qing Dynasty also lived here for some time in 1750, so this room was also known as the" Dragons's Court". This bronze statue was dedicated to Bodhidharma, the founding father of Zen sect. He traveled extensively before settling down in the temple. It is said he crossed the Yangtze River on a reed, with the help of the Guanyin Bodhisattva.
The Lixue (Standing in the Snow) Pavilion is the only structure that carries great importance. Once upon a time there lived a follow-er of Bodhidharma, Shenguang, who was eager to succeed his mas-ter. On a snowy night, he begged as usual with Bodhidharma out-side, standing in the knee-high snow. The master set forward a pre-requisite: he would not meet his demand unless it would snow in red flakes. Shenguang drew out the sword and cut off his left arm and stained the snowy ground. Bodhidharma was so moved that he passed his mantle, alms bowl and musical instruments on to Shenguang and gave him a Buddhist name of Huike. He was regarded as the second founder of the Zen sect. Emperor Qianlong wrote a phrase on a plaque in commemoration of this story.
Now we are going. into the rearmost structure of the Shaolin Temple, Qianfo (One Thousand Buddhas) Hall. This hall was com-pleted in the Ming Dynasty and the monks used to hone their boxing technique here. Erected there is a bronze statue dedicated to Vairochana, an incarnation of Sakyamuni. There stands on the wall a mural dealing with a scene of five Arhats in audience with Vairochana, a rare piece of folk artwork. This picture is composed of three layers dealing with mountains, clouds and roaring sea. The figures differ from each other and are vividly portrayed. Since lead
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Shaol in Temple (II)
powder was used in the pigment, oxidation occurred and the color of some figures' face turned darker. You might have noticed the deep hollows on the ground. They are 18 in total, which are worn by monks through longtime practice
of standing position. The Shaolin school of Chinese boxing is a comprehensive way of martial arts, which embodies combat-orientated defensive as well as offensive skills. It is especially famous for the
movement of the leg. In addition, this school attaches much impor-t tance to the application of appliances. It also emphasized the cultivation of breathing. Therefore, this school attained fame in China as well as in the world.
This structure we are visiting is known as Liuzu (Six Forerun-ners) Hall, where statues of five eminent Bodhisattvas, i. e., Mahasthamaprapta, Guanyin (Avalokitesvara), Manjusri, Samantab-
hadra and Ksitigarbha are enshrined. They are flanked by statues dedicated to six founders of Zen sect headed by Bodhidharma. Now I'd like to tell you an interesting story which is well known in China's
Buddhist circle. Once upon a time there lived an eminent monk, known as Hongren, who was the fourth successor of the Zen sect. The aging monk was going to pass on his legacy to a follower who is
clever enough. So he ordered his disciples to compose a poem to show their wisdom. His first follower Shenxiu wrote one which goes like this:
My body is like a pipal,
My heart is like the dressing table holding a mirror.
I clean it constantly,
In order to keep the dust away.

A little monk also wanted to have a try. So he dictated one like this:
Pipal itself originally is not a tree,
Selected Tour Commentaries
While the mirror is not a table at all.
Since there is nothing around,
How can the dust fall?

The master appreciated this poem very much and passed on his mantle, alms bowl and belongings to this clever monk, then he be-came the fifth successor and was given the name of Huineng. Later, Huineng taught Zen sect in Nanhua (South China) Temple, Guang-dong Province while his senior, Shenxiu, went on preaching in north China.
Ladies and gentlemen, here is China's largest group of ancient stupas, popularly known as Forest of Stupas, which number more than 240. The total number remains inexact to this day. This area has served as a cemetery which dates back to the Tang Dynasty. The dead monk's ashes used to be buried underground but a pagoda would be erected right above. The difference in shape and height just indi-cates the varying positions, popularity and support of disciples the deceased enjoyed when they were alive. What is more, allĄ 8¤( these pagodas are of one storey, because the Buddhism holds that odd number is the symbol of cleanness and bachelordom.
This is the only contemporary pagoda ever constructed in this area. It was dedicated to the last abbot, Shixingzheng. This one in peculiar shape belongs to Monk Xiaoshan of the Ming Dynasty. As a master of martial arts, he led the imperial army to fend off the Japanese invaders on southeastern coast. This is the tallest pagoda that was completed during the Song Dynasty. It was dedicated to a number of monks who had not attained great achievements or who had no disciples. Unlike other constructions, this pagoda has a door leading into it.
This derelict and cracked pagoda is the oldest of its kind. It was dedicated to Fawan, an eminent monk of the Tang Dynasty. These pagodas provide precious evidences on brick-stone archi-tecture, carving and sculpture, history of arts and religions. Nowev-240
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erybody has 20 minutes to move around at will. Please get on the coach on time.
Ladies and gentlemen, this is the end of our visit to the Shaolin Temple. Thank you for your cooperation. Hope to see you again here. Thank you.