East side of the south of Jiaozi Hutong, Xuanwumenwai, Beijing, China
: Southwest of Tiananmen
: 5.3 km away from the city center Tiananmen
Subway Line 4 at Caishikou Station
Bus No.10 at Huimin Hospital Station
Bus No6, 109 at Jiaozi Hutong Station
As an old temple with the longest history in Beijing, Fayuan Temple is the location of Chinese Buddhist Institute and Museum of Buddhist Books. It is an important place to train young Sangha and study Buddhist culture. In the year 1983, Fayuan Temple was identified as the key temple in Han nation area of China. As the ancient architecture of Qing dynasty, Fayuan Temple was also listed in the fifth National Key Culture Relics Protection Units.
Fayuan Temple covers about 6,700 square meters. It takes the popular symmetric pattern in Ming and Qing dynasties. The main constructions were built in Ming and Qing dynasties. The palace groups in Fayuan Temple were the oldest temple construction groups.
Fayuan Temple has more than 1,300 years of history. It is recorded that Fayuan Temple was first conducted in Tang Dynasty and first named Min Zhong Temple. In the year 645, Tang Taizong Li Shimin wanted built this temple to mourning those killed in the battle of Liaodong. But he did not realize this wish. In the year 696 during the years of Empress Wu Zetian, this project was finished. Later, the temple changed names several times. In 1070, the temple was renovated and called Big Minzhong Temple. Today's size and patterns were formed at that time. In 1734, the temple was set to be Ritsu Temple and officially named Fayuan Temple.
After 1949, this thousand years temple began to be renovated and protected by government. In 1956, Chinese Buddhist Institute was set here. In 1963, the Buddhist meeting of 11 Asian countries was held here. In 1980, China Buddha
books culture house was established in Fayuan Temple, which made the temple one of the Buddhist culture and Buddhist study centers.
At present, the Buddhist Academy of China is located here.
The book Fayuan Temple in Beijing written by Li Ao made this temple well known in the whole world. The novel takes this old temple as the background and represents the related histories.
08:30 - 15:30
Each time I came to Fayuan Temple, I will read the the Buddhism's calligraphy in front of the wall poster. It is not because how much I trust it or how pious I am, but I just want to quiet my busy heart. In the end of Jiaozi Hutong, a not wide path brought me to the temple. There was no swarm of hawkers selling incense or crowed visitors. Everyone came here, they just watched the whole scenery of the temple. Ancient Chinese scholar trees and other green plants stand in the yard. You can see flowers of magnolia and lilac everywhere. In sunny day, you can see the peaceful incense smoke fly up in the air. In rainy day, you can hear the rain touch the green leaves. In snowy day, snow lies everywhere on the brand and top of the temple tower. Each time you come here, you will feel peace in your heart. There is no lack of temple around the city of Beijing. We just need low-key and quiet life attitude.
Fayuan Temple is famous for its lilac, begonia and pinus bungeana.
The best season to visit Fayuan Temple is the end of Spring and beginning of Summer. The lilac there is called lilac sea in this season.
Before you go there, you can read Beijing Fayuan Temple written by Li Ao.
Views from Travelers:
It is a quiet place. The monks there seems professional. If you go on January 15th in of lunar year, there will be vegetarian food. There are also lots of Buddhist literature.
This a a big temple, where China Buddhist Institute lies. On Chinese New Year Day, lots of people come here to burn incense and pray. If you have the conversion card, it is free to get in. There is free vegetarian food on the 1st and 15th each lunar month.
This is a hidden small temple lying in Hutongs. It is said this is the location of Chinese Buddhist books.
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