Yingxian Mu Ta, Datong, Shanxi
(August 23, 2012)

(1) As I jumped out of my bus, this was the view of the pagoda at Fogong Temple in Yingxian County, Shanxi. It's so well-known that it's just called Muta--The Wooden Pagoda. It's over 220 feet (67+ meters) high, nearly a thousand years old, and is entirely made of wood--no metal fasteners, all joinery. Awesome.

(2) The pagoda is actually inside a temple; this is the gate to the shopping area in front.

(3) This new concrete Guanyin makes a nice touch, as most of the statues inside are gaudy.

(4) A full frontal view of the pagoda.

(5) This is the Buddha inside--not too bad.

(6) Another view of that Buddha.

(7) The rest of the statues look like those plaster craft things you buy and paint yourself.

(8) There are three halls on a terrace behind the pagoda: one directly behind, and two on either side of that one. These are probably some of the judges of Hell--although they flank Di Zang Bodhisattva, there are twelve of them.

(9) Some of the Eighteen Arhats. Compare them to the ones I shot at Huayan Si (above) and you'll see the difference. It's like someone's roadside attraction of Biblical characters.

(10) The Five Buddhas. Again, compare them to the ones at Huayan Si.

(11) This gigantic new hall lies behind the hall behind the pagoda. An old lady told me it will open next year.

(12) As I walked to the bus station, I saw this piece of the old city wall of Yingxian (previously called Yingzhou).

(13) I also saw this beauty. I have seen a couple dozen donkey carts in operation in Shanxi, perhaps because they've been used in coal mining operations here.

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Last Updated August 21, 2019

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