Tiantai Mountain

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Tiantai Mountain
Sui Dynasty Guoqing Temple Ancient Tower.JPG
A view of Tiantai Mountain and the Guoqing Temple Pagoda, constructed during the Sui Dynasty.
Highest point
Elevation 1,138 m (3,734 ft)
Coordinates 29°10′44″N121°02′32″E / 29.178843°N 121.042213°E / 29.178843; 121.042213
Geography
Location Zhejiang, China
Tiantai Shan
Chinese 天台山
Hanyu Pinyin PRC Standard Mandarin:
Tiāntāi Shān
ROC Standard Mandarin:
Tiāntái Shān
Guoqing Temple on Mount Tiantai, originally built in 598 during the Sui dynasty and renovated during the reign of the Qing Yongzheng Emperor (r. 1722-1735 AD). Guoqingsi005r.jpg
Guoqing Temple on Mount Tiantai, originally built in 598 during the Sui dynasty and renovated during the reign of the Qing Yongzheng Emperor (r. 17221735 AD).

Tiantai Mountain, Mount Tiantai, or Tiantai Shan is a mountain in Tiantai County near the city of Taizhou, Zhejiang, China. [1] Its highest peak, Huading, reaches a height of 1,138 meters (3,734 ft). [1] The mountain was made a national park on 1 August 1988. One of nine remaining wild populations of Seven-Son Flower Heptacodium miconioides is located on Mount Tiantai. [2]

Tiantai County County in Zhejiang, Peoples Republic of China

Tiantai County is located in Taizhou, Zhejiang Province, People's Republic of China.

Taizhou, Zhejiang Prefecture-level city in Zhejiang, Peoples Republic of China

Taizhou, previously known as Taichow, is a city located at the middle of the East China Sea coast of Zhejiang province. It is located 300 km (190 mi) south of Shanghai and 230 km (140 mi) southeast of Hangzhou, the provincial capital. It is bordered by Ningbo to the north, Wenzhou to the south, and Shaoxing, Jinhua, and Lishui to west. In addition to the municipality itself, the prefecture-level city of Taizhou includes 3 districts, 2 county-level cities, and 4 counties. At the 2010 census, its population was 5,968,838 inhabitants whom 3,269,304 lived in the built-up area made of 3 urban Districts and Wenling City now being largely conurbated.

China State in East Asia

China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia and the world's most populous country, with a population of around 1.404 billion. Covering approximately 9,600,000 square kilometers (3,700,000 sq mi), it is the third- or fourth-largest country by total area. Governed by the Communist Party of China, the state exercises jurisdiction over 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four direct-controlled municipalities, and the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau.

Contents

Legends

In Chinese mythology, the creator goddess Nüwa cut the legs off a giant sea turtle (Chinese :; pinyin :áo) and used them to prop up the sky after Gong Gong damaged Mount Buzhou, which had previously supported the heavens. [3] A local myth holds that Mount Tiantai was on the turtle's back before and Nüwa relocated it to its current position when she had to remove the turtle's legs.[ citation needed ]

Nüwa Chinese goddess

Nüwa or Nügua is the mother goddess of Chinese mythology, the sister and wife of Fuxi, the emperor-god. She is credited with creating mankind and repairing the Pillar of Heaven. Her reverential name is Wahuang.

Chinese language family of languages

Chinese is a group of related, but in many cases not mutually intelligible, language varieties, forming the Sinitic branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family. Chinese is spoken by the Han majority and many minority ethnic groups in China. About 1.2 billion people speak some form of Chinese as their first language.

Hanyu Pinyin, often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization system for Standard Chinese in mainland China and to some extent in Taiwan. It is often used to teach Standard Mandarin Chinese, which is normally written using Chinese characters. The system includes four diacritics denoting tones. Pinyin without tone marks is used to spell Chinese names and words in languages written with the Latin alphabet, and also in certain computer input methods to enter Chinese characters.

Guoqing Temple

Guoqing Temple on the mountain is the headquarters of Tiantai Buddhism and also a tourist destination. Tiantai, named for the mountain, focuses on the Lotus Sutra . The most prominent teacher of that school, Zhiyi, was based at Guoqing Temple. Over many years it has been an important destination for pilgrims, especially from Japan. The mountain was visited by Saichō in 805 who went on to found the related Japanese Buddhist school, Tendai.

Guoqing Temple

The Guoqing Temple is a Buddhist temple on Mount Tiantai, in Taizhou, Zhejiang Province, China. Originally built in 598 during the Sui Dynasty, and renovated during the reign of the Qing Yongzheng Emperor, the temple is located roughly 220 kilometres (140 mi) from the city of Hangzhou. It was the initial site for the creation of the Tiantai school of Mahayana Buddhism, founded by Zhiyi. The temple covers an area of some 23,000 m2 (250,000 sq ft) and features 600 rooms in a total of 14 different halls, including the Grand Hall of Sakyamuni, the Hall of Five Hundred Arhats and the Hall of Monk Jigong. The exterior of the building features Chinese pagodas such as the Sui Pagoda, the Seven Buddha Pagoda, and the Memorial Pagoda of Monk Yi Xing.

Lotus Sutra sutra

The Lotus Sūtra is one of the most popular and influential Mahayana sutras, and the basis on which the Tiantai, Tendai, Cheontae, and Nichiren schools of Buddhism were established. According to Paul Williams, "For many East Asian Buddhists since early times the Lotus Sutra contains the final teaching of the Buddha, complete and sufficient for salvation."

Zhiyi founder of the Tiantai tradition of Buddhism in China

Zhiyi is traditionally listed as the fourth patriarch, but is generally considered the founder of the Tiantai tradition of Buddhism in China. His standard title was Śramaṇa Zhiyi, linking him to the broad tradition of Indian asceticism. Zhiyi is famous for being the first in the history of Chinese Buddhism to elaborate a complete, critical and systematic classification of the Buddhist teachings. He is also regarded as the first major figure to make a significant break from the Indian tradition, to form an indigenous Chinese system.

Ji Gong Temple

The mountain has a famous temple to the Song-era monk Ji Gong at the Cave of Auspicious Mists that was associated with early modern fuji or "spirit writing" movements. [4]

Song dynasty Chinese historical period

The Song dynasty was an era of Chinese history that began in 960 and lasted until 1279. The dynasty was founded by Emperor Taizu of Song following his usurpation of the throne of the Later Zhou, ending the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. The Song often came into conflict with the contemporary Liao and Western Xia dynasties in the north. It was eventually conquered by the Mongol-led Yuan dynasty. The Song government was the first in world history to issue banknotes or true paper money nationally and the first Chinese government to establish a permanent standing navy. This dynasty also saw the first known use of gunpowder, as well as the first discernment of true north using a compass.

Ji Gong Minor Taoist deity

Ji Gong, born Li Xiuyuan and also known as "Chan Master Daoji" was a Chan Buddhist monk who lived in the Southern Song. He purportedly possessed supernatural powers, which he used to help the poor and stand up to injustice. However, he was also known for his wild and eccentric behaviour, and for violating Buddhist monastic rules by consuming alcohol and meat. By the time of his death, Ji Gong had become a folk hero in Chinese culture and minor deity in Chinese folk religion. He is mentioned by Buddhists in folktales and kōans, and sometimes invoked by oracles to assist in worldly affairs.

Fuji is a method of "planchette writing", or "spirit writing", that uses a suspended sieve or tray to guide a stick which writes Chinese characters in sand or incense ashes.

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References

  1. 1 2 "Tiantai Mountain Scenic Area" . Retrieved March 8, 2011.
  2. Lu, H. P.; Cai, Y. W.; Chen, X. Y.; Zhang, X.; Gu, Y. J.; Zhang, G. F. (2006). "High RAPD but no cpDNA sequence variation in the endemic and endangered plant, Heptacodium miconioides Rehd. (Caprifoliaceae)". Genetica. 128 (1–3): 409–417. doi:10.1007/s10709-006-7542-x. PMID   17028968.
  3. Yang, Lihui; An, Deming; Jessica Anderson Turner (2008). Handbook of Chinese Mythology. Oxford University Press. p. 182. ISBN   978-0-19-533263-6.
  4. Katz, Paul R. (1 April 2014). Religion in China and Its Modern Fate. Brandeis University Press. p. 145. ISBN   978-1-61168-543-5.