The Jing’an Temple

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The Jing’an Temple is one of the most famous temple in Shanghai.

At first I was a little bit disappointed because when I got there, they were actually renovating the temple, so there were blue canvas sheets all over the buildings and noisy mechanical diggers right in the central court. The big picture did not seem that attractive…

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Although, the Jing’an temple is situated in one of the most materialistic part of the city, where are all the fancy boutiques and shops. I was pretty surprised about this contrast.

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Then I started looking at all the details around me.

The golden illuminations on the walls, the Chinese wooden artworks, and  the encryptions on the court floor. The pleasing smell of burning incenses, and the thick grey smoke coming from the hot coal. The light sun showing from behind the decorated roofs, and the small breeze passing through my hair.

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I watched the Buddhists burning incenses and praying toward the Buddha. People from all different backgrounds were there: adolescents, mothers with their child, businessmen, elderlies, fancy ladies, tourists…

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Some people were having fun and were laughing while trying to throw coins in the central tower.

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Then I wandered around.

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I took all the photos from outside the rooms in order not to importunate prayers.

I  finished with the Buddha. It is really huge, made of 5 tons of silver.

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Finally, I got back the central court and bought some incenses. I hold it with my two hands and looked toward the Jade Buddha.

As I have been calm and silent during all my visit, I started to make space in my mind.

It was suddenly like it was empty, or not at all. I had at the same time no thought, and all of the thoughts I have ever had, rushing through my head.

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I put my stick back into the coal, looked one last time around me, and left, my heart in peace.

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