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Everyday China_Ang_16.08.12

Yu Garden, Shanghai
Yu Garden_Buddha Temple
Temple Courtyard


Yu yuan Garden ‘Garden of Contentment’ was built and completed in 1577 by Pan Yunduan, an officer of finance during the Ming Dynasty, 1368-1644. He created the garden for his parents to enjoy the later part of their life. A tradition extant in current Chinese culture – to respect your elders and care for your parents. The temple was constructed in the Song Dynasty (960-1279 AD), with the design elements of ascending eaves and ceramic roofs.

Yu Garden Prayer Courtyard
Prayer and Dedication


Today the bright sun was sharing its wealth at 35 c. When I entered the main gate, I was in awe seeing this intricately designed structure. It formed a 30 feet/9 meter backdrop for the incense filled air in the center of the courtyard. People were observing, praying and sending thoughts to their loved ones, well, that was my assumption. The Buddha Temple had several statues of deities, paintings and scrolls of calligraphy as a place of worship and a reminder of the history, philosophy and ones purpose in life.




As I meandered through the six main areas of the garden,  this interior was most intriguing. The symmetrically designed environment allowed for the warm summer air to easily move through the carved rosewood screens, and with minimal seating it allowed for introspection or private conversation. The stone walkways, rock formations, ornamental ponds and flower walls all have design elements that intersect with foliage and organic forms and are enhanced by interior lanterns.

Yu Garden Courtyard

Yu Garden Landscape

another inspiring day in China – Stephen

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