Bādàchù Xīshān


 
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The Badachu are Eight Great Buddhist Temples on the eastern edge of the West Mountains, about 25km west of Tiananmen in Beijiing. the eight temples are: 靈光寺 Língguāngsì, 三山庵 Sānshānān, 大悲寺 Dàbēisì, 龍泉庵 Lóngquánān, 龍王堂 Lóngwángtáng, 香界寺 Xiāngjièsì, 寶珠洞寺 Bǎozhūdòngsì, 証果寺 Zhèngguǒsì.

Today in early June, 2006, they are mainly tourist sites. Only one or two monks were seen on a hike up the mountain. All the attendants are ordinary workers. Most of the temples seem to have taken on a carnival atmosphere with bell targets hanging. Tourists and pilgrims, hard to tell which is which here, buy copper tokens and fling them at the bells, getting good luck with hits. Like throwing baseballs at bottles.

Only at the Lingguangsi, whose pagoda perches on a tooth of the Buddha, are there signs of reverance. Here one pilgrim prostrates himself repeatedly on a mat and another site still as a stature in meditation.

 
 
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