" Pagoda Forest is a graveyard actually from Buddhist masters whose ash buried in the basement under pagoda. There are 228 stone and brick pagodas of different dynasties from Tang to today, different pagodas have different levels, the number must be odd 1 to 7 based on how much achievement they did and how high position they were in before passing away. Different pagoda from different dynasties have different shapes and sizes, six or four sides, square or round, such as the oldest pagoda built in 791 AD of Tang dynasty the group pagoda with an open door built in 1121 AD of Song dynasty. Master Chongguo pagoda built 1209 AD, master Yugong's pagoda built in 1312 AD of Yuan dynasty. Master Jugong pagoda inscribed by a Japanese monk named Shaoyuan and built in 1339 AD of Yuan dynasty, Master Tanran's pagoda built in 1580AD of Ming dynasty and so on. The pagoda is believed to be the biggest pagoda forest in China and the treasure house of pagoda architecture and caving was approved as nation-level scenic spot in 1996. "
Note from signboard.
In Chinese: 塔林 , ta lin
Other places in Shaolin Temple including:
3) Great Treasure Hall ( 大雄宝殿，da xiong bao dian)
4) Wenshu Hall ( 文殊殿，wen shu dian ): In this hall is enshrined the statue of Bodhisattva Wenshu (Manjusri). Bodhisattva Wenshu was renowned as the wisest among the numerous buddhist bodhisattva. He always showed extraordinary talents and convincing eloquence in discussion and argument at Bodhisattva meetings. There fore he is also known as " Bodhisattva the Great Master of Wisdom". At the north end of the hall is enshrined the famous , " Image Stone of Dhama Facing the wall". It was believed that this image was the result of his shadow having been impressed on the stone wall while sitting in meditation.
5) Pilu Pavilion ( 西方圣人殿，xi fang sheng ren dian )
6) Chan Medicine ( 上药堂，shang yao tang)
The building with lotus on top is really catching my eyes during day and night time. This is a government building dealing with national aircraft matters, not open to the public. You can see the building closer from Zhong Zhou Zhong Road, nearby Wangfujing Department Store.
In Chinese: 航空大厦，hang kong da sha.
Fengxian Temple is the largest and most impressive craved Buddha Statues in Longmen Grottoes. They are constructed during the reign of Empress Wu Zetian Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD). The main Buddha Statue is Buddha Vairocana , 17.15 meter height, 4 meters head, and 1.9 meters ears. This statue has the typical Tang features including plump face, dropping ears, perfe ct configurations, sedated airs and benignant attitude. The entire piece really shows great virtues, rich sentiments, the generous mind and elegant appearances of the Buddha.
Disciples and Bodhisattvas are standing beside Vairocana Buddha with kind or devout expression. The array comprises nine statues:the Vairocana Buddha in the center, two disciples, two Bodhisattvas, two guardians and two warriors.
Don't miss this... perfect place to take pictures.
In Chinese: 奉先寺，feng xian si
" Bai Yuan , the graveyard for the great poet Bai Ju-Ji of the Tang Dynasty (772-846 AD), was labeled by the State Council in 1961 as one of China's first key cultural relics for protection. In 1982, the municipal government of Luoyang City allocated funds to renovate the graveyard, which was open to public in the following years. The yard covers 50 mu (about 33,000 square meters) and consists of three areas: Green Vally Area, Grave Area and Poem Corridor Area. The Tang-style constructions such as Tingyi Pavilion, Letian House, Bai Ju-Ji Pavilion and Songfeng Pavilion look elegant and unsophisticated, all embodying the poet's character, grace of Tang Dynasty and harmony with nature. Walking in the yard, you may enjoy the beautiful scenery as well as appreciate " Winding paths lead to quiet and secluded places" and " View vary with your steps". Bai Yuan is now an important tourist attraction in Longmen Grottoes. "
Note From Signboard
In Chinese: 白园 , bai yuan
" In the Hall, there are four Heavenly Kings, who are separately in charge of the four large regions in a Buddhist legend. The four regions are mountains, rivers, forests and land. And the four Heavenly kings are also called " Four Heavenly Guarding Kings", They are standing two Heavenly Kings and two warriors in the Hall. The Heavenly Kings and Warriors in the hall are made of bronze."
Note From Signboard.
In Chinese: 天王殿，tian wang dian
" Arhat is a disciple of Buddha's with great achievements. And Arhat is the highest grade aquired in the rank, lower than Buddha. Eighteen Arhat, who defend and elevate Buddhism, not necessarily returning to the normal world after their death, are worshiped in this Hall. Eighteen Arhats are all made of bronze. "
Note From Signboard
In Chinese: 罗汉殿，luo han dian
"In the autumn of the 15th year of Qianlong during Qing Dynasty (1750 AD), Emperor Qianlong (Gaozong) visited Longmen Grottoes. As his interest increased, the emperor ascended the stone stalls to Xiangshan Temple. Deeply impressed and charmed by its smallness, delicateness, freshness and quietness, the emperor enthusiastically wrote a poem entitled Two Verses for Xiangshan Temple, in which the very first line compliments the temple as follows of the ten temples in Longmen, Xiangshan Temple ranks the first. The poem sings praise of the temple and the beautiful scenery of Yique. In the last line the emperor expresses his admiration for Bai Ju-yi. Bai is more talented than I , his poems inspire me to work harder, which demonstrates the modesty of the great emperor. The poem on the stele not only enable us to appreciate the artistic calligraphy of Xiangcao, but to further understand the modest personality of Qianlong, which is also a spur for us all. "
Note From Signboard.
In Chinese: 乾隆街碑亭，qian long jie bei ting
" In 1936, China was facing great domestic problems and external challenges, and the war was about to break out. Luoyang, which has been a place of great importance to both sides during war time, was also the significant political and military headquarter at that time. To supervise the enforcement of the policy of "internal pacification before resisting external invasion" , Chiang Kai Shek, head of the Central Military Committee of kuo min tang, came to Luoyang to make military preparation. However, he told people that the reason for him to go to Luoyang was to celebrate his 50th birthday, which was an excuse.
At that time, Zhu Shao Zhou was the director of Luoyang College of the Central Military Academy for the Ground Force, and also commander of Luoyang Garrson Headquarters. In order to receive the visit of Chiang Kai Shek and his wife Song Mei Ling and their attendants, and to show his loyalty to his boss, he started to construct some buildings in Luoyang and its outskirt. To please Chiang and Soong, Zhu Shao zhou joined the effort with Henan Provincial Government and built the villa, which was named ChiangSoong Villa. The villa had both Chinese and Western architectural features.
The ChiangSoong Villa is located in an area of over 650 square meters, and has Bald architecture, arcade and cockloft. It has more than 20 rooms, and its floor space is 816 square meters. It must be the best and most fancy piece of architecture of that in the middle of China at that time. In addition, it also witness political events that took place in more than 50 years in that century. "
Note from Signboard.
In Chinese: 蒋宋别墅，jiang song bie shu
This Thousand-Hand-And-Eye Buddha Guanyin has been destroyed during the revolution. As you can see the remaining Guanyin statuehas no face, and the thousand-hand-and eyes have not existence anymore. That could be the reason why this part of the cave has been gated with grilled door.
In Chinese: 千手千眼观音，qian shou qian yan guan yin
Lotus Flower Cave is located north of Fengxian Temple, the main Buddha Statues in Longmen. It was completed during late Northern Wei Dynasty, named after a beautiful plant, Lotus. A big Lotus was carved on the ceiling of the cave, a Sakyamuni Buddha 5.10 meter high standing under the lotus. The Buddha dressed as Monk, like traveled all the way from India to China.
In Chinese: 莲花洞，lian hua dong
Ten Thousand Buddha Cave is called " Wanfo Dong" in Chinese. It was completed first year of Tang Dynasty by Wing Lung during 680 AD. It has 15,000 carved Buddha statues on the North and South wall. The main wall has five statues including a main Buddha Amitabha, two disciples, and two Bodhisattvas. The cave is 500 meters deep, four meters high Buddha sitting in the Octagonal waist to sumeru lotus seat and looked serene and solemn.
In Chinese: 万佛洞，wan fo dong
Moya-Three-Buddha Niche was craved by Wu Zhou Zheng around 690 AD. Later, he was promoted by Zhang Jian in political office. The work of these statues were done by others during Zhou Dynasty. That's why the craved works look rough with no much details.
It consists of seven status, three of them are seated Buddhas and four of them are standing Buddhas. The Buddha seated in the middle is the main Buddha of all, Buddha Maitreya. Buddha Maitreya sits on a square pedestal, with damaged head, carved of a profile, and unpolished. According to Buddhist Sutras, Buddha Maitreya is the future Buddha, and is now successors of the Buddha Sakyamuni.
In Chinese: 摩崖三佛龛， mo ya san fo kan
Binyang Caves consists of three caves with giant Buddha Statues.They are completed during Sui and Tang dynasties, but statues here all display the benevolent expressions that characterised Northern Wei style. Northern Wei style of Buddhist sculptures including:
1) Buddha's monk's robe covering both shoulder with thin underrobe and knotted cross-tie, flowing in patterned folds over his throne.
2) General elongated bodies with squarish heads.
3) Buddha's distinctive " archaic smile" that ia a naive upward-facing crescent.
Middle Cave :They are built by Emperor Xuanwun to commemorate his father Emperor Xiaowen and mother Empress Wenzhao. It was constructed by more than 800,000 workers during the period of 500 to 523. There are 5 large Buddhist statues are carved in Northern Wei style. I found this Buddha Statues is rather friendly with smiling expression.
South Cave: This Buddhist statues craved by Li Tai, the fourth son of Li Shimin, the first Emperor of Tang Dynasty. It was craved them in 641 AD to memory his mother Empress Zhangsun. The art is the bend between Northern Wei Style and Tang dynasty styles.
North Cave: It began construction in the Northern Wei Dynasty by Xuanwun to commemorate his parents and completed in the Tang Dynasty. Amida's right-hand mudra is Kapitthaka ("removing fear"). Guanyin carries a small vase in her left hand and a lotus in her right.
In Chinese: 宾阳三洞 (Bin Yang San Dong)
Qianxi Temple cave is the first impressive Buddha carving you will see from the East Entrance. This piece of art work was carved during Emperor Gaozong in the Tang Dynasty. The main statue in the middle is Buddha Amitabha, and two Buddha on the sides are Avalokitesvara on the left and Mahasthamaprapta on the right. This cave was established by a monk named Shandao in the early Tang Dynasty, who taught people to practice Buddhism so that they can go to Sukhavati after death. The master of the land is Buddha Amitabha.
I had this picture in black and white due to the reflextion of the sun, I can't take the picture of the actual color.
In Chinese: 潜溪寺， Qian Xi Si