Travelogue

Temples and Churches @ Hanoi

Buddhism and Taoism are popular in Hanoi. That could be seen by the number of temples in the city.

The lady was praying at the entrance to the Den Noc Son (Jade Mound Temple), which was situated on a island on the Hoan Kiem Lake. There temple was connected to the main land by the Rising Sun Bridge.

Rising Sun Bridge

You will be greeted by this candelier and a large (mock-up) tortoise in the temple.

Actually mostly of the interior deco inside temples were similar, mostly painted with red color, with gold coating.

But then, we are in Hanoi, so there must be something that could be different.

One of the interesting idol honored by the devotees are ‘horses’. The most famous temple Den Bech Ma (White Horse Temple. 1010) on Hang Buom Street, was named after this white horse. In every other temple, you can often see giant horse statue placed on each side of the temple. Another interesting deco is the color flag written with the Chinese character ‘god’.

Another interesting experience was the visit to Quan Su Pagoda on Quan Su Street. While walking towards the temple, I thought that the best business to do this in commuity might be selling hair shampoo. We shall many passerby having white flakes on their heads and shoulders. I thought dandruff must be a common problem here, and I swear I never saw some much and such big flakes on some many people.

After arriving at the temple, my dreamed business plan was shattered. The sky was filled with falling ashes resulted from the burning of the offerings. You could see some of the flakes drifting in the air in the picture below.

Local Hanoi folks were devoted to their belief and religion.

We could notice the influence of Chinese culture in Vietnam.

There were plenty of Chinese characters. The most obvious influence of Chinese culture onto Vietname could be see from the Museum of Literature.

There were plenty of temples that exceed 1,000 years old. Quan Thanh Temple was built in 1010, over seeing West Lake in Hanoi.

I like the greenery maintained in most of the temple. I provide good shades for devotees even during mid day hot weather.

Catholic and Christian churches were commonly seen in the community too. The St Joseph’s Cathedral (1886) was the landmark in French Quarter.

We walked pass another Church on Hai Ba Trung street, and the kind sister invited us to take photo inside the church. I always enjoy  the serenity inside any church (except once we were inside a Greek Church in France).

I wish religion can continue to provide the peace of mind and blessing the devotees are seeking for.

And provide the guiding lights to the lost soul (like me :))

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