18 Day – China Discovery Tour
Day 07 | Luoyang | Friday, 03 Jan 2020
Activity – White Horse Temple Luoyang
White Horse Temple (Chinese: 白马寺) is Buddhist temple in Luoyang, Henan that, according to tradition, is the first Buddhist temple in China, having been first established in 68 AD under the patronage of Emperor Ming in the Eastern Han dynasty.
The site is just outside the walls of the ancient Eastern Han capital, some 12–13 kilometres (7.5–8.1 mi) east of Luoyang in Henan Province. It is approximately 40 minutes by bus No. 56 from Luoyang railway station. The temple, although small in comparison to many others in China, is considered by most believers as “the cradle of Chinese Buddhism”. The geographical landmarks to the south are Manghan mountain and Lucoche River.
More about White Horse Temple:
Highlights of the White Horse Temple Complex:
Hall of Heavenly Kings – has a statue of the Maitreya, known in China as the Laughing Buddha
Hall of the Great Buddha – the main hall in White Horse Temple (built in the Ming Dynasty 1368-1644) and known for its elegant architecture. In the middle of the hall stands a statue of the Buddhist patriarch Sakyamuni along with two of his disciples – Kasyapa and Ananda standing on each side.
Hall of Guidance – The smallest hall at the White Horse Temple, here you will find the Amitabha Buddha (also known as the Buddha of Guidance). To his left and right are the Bodhisattva of Moonlight and the Goddess of Mercy. These sculptures produced during the Qing Dynasty (1644 to 1912).
Hall of Mahavira – the largest and most impressive hall in White Horse Temple. In the center stands a two story Buddhist shrine that showcases hand carved birds and giant dragons. Also included are three saints Sakyamuni, Amitabha and the Buddha of Medicine look with the eighteen arhats (followers) all made from hemp, silk, and clay. These items still retain their colorful appearance even though they were made in the Yuan Dynasty (1279–1368).
Foreign Temple Complex – As you exit out of the White Horse Temple complex (at back on left side of complex you will enter into the Foreign Temple Complex. We did not realize about this section so it came as a surprise when we spotted a Thai Temple. In this section you will find Temples from Thailand, Myanmar and India. I will cover the Thailand Temple in its own post here https://time2mosey.com/thai-temple-at-white-horse-temple/