Discovering the magic of Taiwan’s temples

For those who journey to Taiwan, you’ll undoubtedly come throughout Mazu. In Taoism, one of many religions practised in Taiwan, she is the goddess of the ocean, and about 400 of the island’s many temples are devoted to her.

However it’s troublesome to select probably the most stunning amongst Taiwan’s temples.

The Lungshan Temple within the Manka district of the capital Taipei is certainly value a go to. It was initially constructed by Chinese language immigrants in 1738 and devoted to the Buddhist goddess Guanyin, however now Mazu is worshipped there.

Within the west of the island, the little city of Lukang awaits, with its little historic alleys and temple complexes. However bear in mind that it’s one of many island’s hottest vacationer locations, which comes with commerce, rickshaw rides and handmade lanterns.

Traditional lanterns in the little town of Lukang.Conventional lanterns within the little city of Lukang.

So if you’re searching for one thing a bit extra secluded, attempt the Solar Moon Lake Wen Wu Temple, situated within the centre of Taiwan. The fashionable, palace-like constructing devoted to Confucius sits on the shore of the Solar Moon Lake, with a panoramic view.

Deep down within the south of Taiwan, in Kaohsiung, an unlimited temple advanced is situated on the shore of the magnificent Lotus Pond, with the seven-storey Dragon and Tiger Pagodas towering over the water. You may enter the 2 towers via the mouth of the dragon and go away via the throat of the tiger.

The Dragon and Tiger Pagodas towering over the water, at the temple complex in Kaohsiung.The Dragon and Tiger Pagodas towering over the water, on the temple advanced in Kaohsiung.

Once you go to a temple, you can be shocked how straightforward it’s. They’re usually free and open to everybody, and you might be welcome to take photos. In keeping with Taiwanese vacationer information Michelle Chiu, no particular clothes is required. Shorts and brief sleeves are advantageous, for each ladies and men.

Nevertheless, it’s best to by no means step on the raised threshold, which brings dangerous luck. Thresholds are knee-high limitations, that are additionally mentioned to keep at bay evil spirits. However this doesn’t imply that the temple is closed – simply step over them.

Once you enter via the Paifang, the archway on the entrance of the temple space, you will have crossed the border between the worldly and the heavenly sphere. Inside, vibrant wooden and stone carvings, curved roofs and symbolic photos await. The colorful sculptures in human form on the roofs symbolise prosperity, happiness and longevity.

The piercing gazes of dragons will observe your each step. They characterize power, creativity and knowledge, and performance as guardians in addition to symbols of enlightenment.

Deep contained in the temple, incense smoke fills the air and choices are draped on tables: bunches of flowers, bananas, oranges, rice, packets of biscuits. What is meant for the representatives of the supernatural world finally advantages the needy.

Offerings of fruit and flowers at the Lungshan Temple. Choices of fruit and flowers on the Lungshan Temple.

Temples are often stuffed by the noise made by a pair of little crimson half-moon formed wood instruments, referred to as jiaobei. Every bit has a flat and a rounded aspect and after posing a query to the divinity, religious guests throw the jiaobei on the ground.

If each items land on the flat aspect, the gods have answered “no”. A spherical and a flat aspect are affirmative, and if each items land on the rounded aspect, it signifies that the query was irrelevant. – dpa/Andreas Drouve

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