Sunday, May 16, 2010

(佛牙寺) Buddha Tooth Relic Temple @ Chinatown, Singapore

I had the opportunity (again) to visit the above mentioned temple today while waiting for Alex to finish gambling his money away at the newest casino in Singapore, the Marina Bay Sands.

To set the record straight, he lost S$1,100!
Please thank him for his contribution to Singapore's economy.

Coming back to this beautiful temple (design was from the Tang Dynasty era), it was my 3rd visit since its inception. Alone with my Nikon D5000, i took my time to walk through the four levels and rooftop.

I am not going to bore you with my naive understanding of Buddhism but i strongly recommend interested individuals to visit the temple for its wide array of Buddhist artifacts, statues, artworks, peaceful surrounding (at least for the upper levels) and attractive architecture.

First Floor
The Front Hall

The Back Hall

Offering for the Bodhisattvas

I saw this in Bangkok before, in Wat Pho.
The kids will love to donate just by hearing the ching-ching-ching.

Lining the walls of the halls were smaller sized Buddha statues. For the supposedly good fortune of yourself or your family, you can sponsor the tiny ones for a token (no idea how much though).

Mezzanine
Overlooking the first floor, this floor had some pretty good information on prominent local and and foreign monks. There was also an ancestral hall with unnamed tablets.

A prayer session was going on at the first floor!

Second Floor
I missed this floor!!!
How to get there ah?!?!?

Third Floor
The Buddhist Cultural Museum relates the life of Buddha and the spread of Buddhism. With a superb collection of artifacts from the Buddhist world, this museum was actually quite impressive.

A baby elephant and a monkey prostrating to a two meters high statue. 

Footprint of Buddha. For its meaning and symbolism, please click here.

Isn't this the highly revered emerald Buddha from Wat Phra Kaew, Bangkok?!?! Must be a replica even though no information was available in the gallery.

My favourite artifact is this.
From far, it looked as if the statue was relaxing mid-air!

At the back, there is a Sacred Buddha Relics (舍利) Chamber. The best i can do was to take a picture of the entrance since no photography is allowed. For pictures, please click here.

Fourth Floor
Again, the strict "no photo taking allowed" policy as this is the main floor housing the most sacred treasure for the temple; the Buddha Tooth. The environment was serene and the floorings at the sides were elevated, allowing devotees to have a quiet time reciting the Buddhist sutras.

The magnificent main chamber was adorned with so many golden items like golden lanterns, pure gold tiles and of course, the pure gold stupa storing the tooth relic.

Seeing is believing!
Go and take a look yourself!

Rooftop
Want a nice place to read your book?
This is it!

In the middle of the rooftop is a Ten Thousand Buddhas Pagoda, housing a huge prayer wheel in the middle. 

The prayer wheel! I saw this when i was in Yunnan two years back, in this Tibetans populated area called Shangri-La. The one there was much bigger and to surround it, you need more than fifteen persons!

Cases of Buddha statue that made up the 10,000 Buddhas for the rooftop! Of course, you can pay for yourself or your family to be part of it.

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Location
288, South Bridge Road
Within Chinatown

Price
Free admission!!
Donations welcome though.

Additional Information

The building is disabled friendly to cater for the pious elderly!

Side track a bit ah. Don't you think this sink (for the toilet) looks like an alms bowl used by the monks?

Last picture!


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