Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sun Temple (太陽宫) @ Bedok, Singapore

Sun Temple (太陽宫)
@ Bedok, Singapore

Conversation as of Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Mom: Free to bring me somewhere this Saturday?
Me: Where?

Mom: Tai Yang Gong (Sun Temple)
Me: But you went there last week leh.

Mom: The horoscope column in Wanbao recommends that people born in the horse year visit any temple that worships the sun.

I don't dare to declare how filial i am although i tried to satisfy my mom's requests to the best i can since i have only one mother and all of us know that time is not unlimited.

My first impression of this particular sun temple (太陽宫) in Bedok was how unglamourous, how unassuming, how basic it is. There isn't the grandeur found in most temples with towering statues, big manicured gardens and roofs that bounced off radiant colorful tiles.

Don't be deceived by the outlook as this temple that worships the tai yang gong gong (or grandfather sun; an affectionate term for the sun used by many Singaporeans of Chinese descent) has a somewhat fasinating beginning! And it used to be stationed in Pulau Tekong; an island any Singaporean men know!

According to the big donation plaque, it was said that a lady living in Pulau Tekong by the name of Madam Dai the Sixth (戴六娘) was afflicted with a weird ailment when she was 50 years old and no one can cure her.

A miracle happened one day when she was apparently possessed by the Guan Yin goddess. Besides passing her two types of medication and three talismans, Madam Dai was also asked by the deity to perform duties on behalf of tai yang gong gong and help the world.

I am not a researcher and i am not interested to comment how true or untrue the story is. People who know me personally know i am a skeptical person by heart.

Without further ado, here come the pictures!

Unlike most temples, this has only one altar area and it is quite big with minimal decoration and furnishing.

The patron of the sun temple (known as Tian Kong Buddhist Temple on streetdirectory.com); Tai Yang Gong Gong! Though i mentioned that this is a "basic" temple, the statue was adorned with many gold necklaces!

Resident hound for the temple! It is a people's dog and even though it was supposedly tick infested, most of us could not resist the temptation to continue playing with it. 

All the statues are arranged nicely in a glass enclosure and as you can see from the picture, they are not humongous statues favoured by many temples.

Buddhist books that touch on scriptures, karma and the way of life.

A hand-drawn map of the old Pulau Tekong! Gosh, this is such an unexpected find!

Mom was praying and i know exactly what she is praying for; well-being for the family. And constant winnings of lottery every week!

This is an unusual statue as it is a clearly a man wearing the traditional Malay attire. This is most likely the Grandfather Datuk (Na Tuk Kong).

Chrysanthemum flowers with an illuminating yellow tinge to brighten up the otherwise really boring hall!

Thicker, longer incense sticks are favoured here; reason unknown! I should have asked since the temple caretakers are really nice and helpful.  

Pictures of Pulau Tekong before the government eviction! I expected villages on stilts but the pictures reflected a little town instead! Thankfully we still have Pulau Ubin!

=====

True to its origins, the temple opens when the sun is up!

My mom just told me that accordingly to the horoscope column, she has to pray at the sun temple EVERY WEEK!!! And the temple is super near to Singapore Expo!!!

Argh!!!! I need more $$$$$$$$$$!




9 comments:

  1. Hi,

    May I know how to get to this temple?

    Thanks & Regards
    Ell

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Ell,

    The temple is registered under Tian Kong Buddhist Temple and its precise location is 51 Bedok North Avenue 4!

    Driving is the best way to get there. For public transport,it is bus no 17 that stops pretty near.

    Nearest MRT station should be tanah merah, simei or expo.

    Enjoy! :)

    Regards,
    Cavin

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you, Cavin.

    ReplyDelete
  4. My mum asked me to pray to the tai yang xing jun but I don't know how. How's your mum did it? Just go there and pray? Nothing special to prepare?

    ReplyDelete
  5. Yes, she purchased the fruits, incense sticks and papers from the caretaker and that's it.

    You may want to ask the caretakers there; very friendly chaps. They should be in a better position to advise you. :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Noted with thanks. Xie Xie Ni, Cavin

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sorry guys. The Sun god is not (tai yang xin jun) it 大日如来 Vairocana, Buddha of supreme enlightenment, refer to the wood signage infront of the idol.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. eh, is there a signage in front of the idols now? i don't think the 6th photo on this post is 大日如来.

      Delete

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