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Wenshu Monastery

Situated in the central area of Chengdu, Sichuan Province, Wenshu Monastery is one of the national key monasteries of Chinese Buddhism designated by the State Council. It is rated as top one of the four Buddhist monasteries of Zen tradition in the upper and lower reaches of Yangtze River, and also a key cultural relic protection unit in Sichuan Province. It is a holy land of Buddhism integrating sacred Buddhist relics, beautiful gardens and ancient architecture, pilgrimage and sightseeing, religious studies and practice.

The monastery was first built during Daye Period of Sui Dynasty (605-617 B.C.) with its original name of Xin Xiang Monastery. Having undergone times of thriving and eclipse during the dynasties as Tang, Five Dynasties, Song, Yuan and Ming, it was destroyed in the flames of war at the end of Ming Dynasty. In the 36th year of the Kangxi period of Qing Dynasty (1697 B.C.), the monastery was rebuilt by Zen master Cidu Haiyue, during whose time splendid light was often observed over the monastery. People traced the light to the retreat of Zen master Cidu and believed he was the incarnation of Manjusri Bodhisattva, thus Xin Xiang Monastery was renamed as Wenshu (Manjusri) Monastery. In the 40th year of Kangxi Period in Qing Dynasty (1701 B.C.), Emperor Kangxi granted the Wenshu Monastery a stele “Kong Lin” (literally means “empty woods”, a title usually used to refer to Buddhist monasteries, Zen monasteries in particular); thereby Wenshu Monastery is also called “Kong Lin Hall”.

The floor space of Wenshu Monastery exceeds 200,000 m2. The buildings in it are of complete wooden structure. Six major halls positioned along the central axis of the mountain gate look lofty and magnificent, while the enchased windows of various types and exquisite craftsmanship top all domestic monasteries. Two hundred statues of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas molded with copper, iron, gauze and clay or carved with wood and stone, are impressive with consummate craftsmanship and plumpy shapes. Despite chaos of wars of the past, these statues have been kept intact, a very rare case among all domestic Buddhist monasteries. Large quantity of rare curiosa, cimelia, scriptures, calligraphic works and paintings are housed here, among which, most famous are the skull sarira of great Tripitaka Master Xuan Zhang, Avatamsaka Sutra written with tongue blood, Avalokitesvara embroidered with human hair, palm-leaf scriptures and works by great calligraphers and painters such as Emperor Kangxi, Prince Yunli, Liu Yong, Zhang Daqian, Xie Wuliang, Feng Zikai, Zhao Puchu and Qi Gong.

Entering the millennium ancient Wenshu Monastery, visitors will not only be deeply impressed with its historical and cultural profundity, but also be touched with the purifying vigor and vitality from the rich Buddhist atmosphere inside the monastery.

Address:Wenshu Monastery,WengshuyuanStreet, Chengdu

Religion: Chinese Buddhism

Contact:Tel(028)86952273 86932375

(This information is provided by wenshu monastery)