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HOMETEMPLESBUDDHISMHONOR ROLLPILGRIMAGE


 

Dedicated to one late-Song general and one complete unknown

A Tu Di (the "earth god")

B Yang Hao

C Chen Hao

D Tian Hou (the "Sea Goddess")

E Bell

Name: Chen Yang Hao Miao
Main figures: Chen Hao and Yang Hao.  Chen Hao is an otherwise-unknown hero "from the Tang Dynasty," and Yang Hao was an attendant to the boy popularly called "the last Song emperor."
Other figures: Tu Di, Tian Hou; numerous popular Buddhist and Taoist figures in the neighboring park (see below)
"History":   The temple is said to date back to the Ming Dynasty.  It is known that the extremely wealthy village of Xia Sha, within modern Shenzhen, is indeed that old, and there is a photo from the early 1990s of a quite dilapidated temple standing there (along with the equally hoary Huang Ancestral Hall next door).  However, the current structure, like the Huang Hall, was "renovated"--almost certainly completely rebuilt--in 1994, and there is nothing to indicate that the main figures are of any great age.  The best one can say is that veneration of Chen Hao and Yang Hao has been going on here for a very long time, but no real antiquity can be ascribed to the fabric of the temple.

Chen Hao was "someone from the Tang" who "helped the people," according to the temple keeper.  This is the first time I encountered the phenomenon described by Keith Stevens in his book, Chinese Gods:

"Temples keepers generally...refer to their particular deities or heroes as having lived 'a thousand years ago' or 'during the T'ang dynasty.' Both mean, 'I don't know when they lived, but it was a long time ago.'" 

The temple keeper could tell me nothing else: what he did, where he lived, and even the date of "Tang Dynasty" came only after several inquiries--clearly meant to appease.

With Yang Hao we are on more solid ground.  He was Yang Liang Jie, a maternal uncle of the Last Song Emperor.  You can read more of Yang Hao's story here.

Description:   This is a simple two hall, one courtyard temple; the courtyard is covered.  The entry hall has enclosed rooms on either side of the door; the main hall has the two figures of Yang Hao (B) and Chen Hao (C) in the central bay; Tu Di in the left bay (A); and Tian Hou in the right bay (D).  A bell E)
Festival/s:   Unknown, but the feast day of Yang Hao may be held in either the sixth or the eighth month of the lunar calendar. 
Getting there:   The main gate to Xia Sha village is plainly visible on the south side of Binhe Road in Futian, across from the B&Q Hardware.  All buses to the village itself are circuitous; it might be best to take the Shenzhen Metro to Che Gong Miao Station (named after another, no-longer-extant temple).  From there, walk south on Xiangmihu Road for about 10 minutes, to Binhe, from which crossing you can see the gateway.  Cross Binhe, enter the gate, and follow the road to the heart of the village.  OR from Che Gong Miao Station take a cab, likely to be only a minimum (12.50 yuan) ride.  Say "Shya sha tsoon" (almost like "cha cha soon") to the cabbie.
Also in the area: The temple is located in the center of Xia Sha Village. It is in a park/plaza which also contains statues of various popular Buddhist and Taoist figures.  Next door is the Huang Ancestral Hall, said to be of the same vintage as the temple.  The streets of the plaza are lined with lampposts representing various popular characters from Chinese literature.
About the photos: All photos on this page are copyright 2005 by James Baquet

Gallery

click pictures to enlarge

The Exterior

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The front The doorway The two-hall structure
 can be seen in this side
view

The Interior

IMG_2776.JPG (106498 bytes)

The main figures
with offerings

 

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Tu Di (A)

Yang Hao (B) and 
Chen Hao (
C)

Tian Hou (D)

The Area

IMG_2768.JPG (104237 bytes)

An overview of the center of Xia Sha Village.
The temple is at left rear, the Huang Ancestral Hall at right

 

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