Visit Tay An Co Tu Temple of Sam mountain to admire the unique ancient architecture
Not only has a very beautiful location, located right in the east of the scenic area of Sam Chau Doc mountain, Tay An Co Tu also has a high value in terms of art and architecture. The ancient temple is also a place to keep many cultural values - good beliefs of An Giang people from the time of reclamation and establishment of hamlets.
Chau Doc in particular and An Giang, in general, are famous for having many beautiful and sacred temples. Anyone who has ever traveled to An Giang or learned about this place has also heard of unique religious works such as Ba Chua Xu Temple of Sam Mountain, Phuoc Dien Tu Cave Pagoda, Huynh Dao Pagoda, and the name cannot fail to mention.
Next is the ancient temple of Tay An. Local people also call the pagoda by the name of ancient Tay An. If you have the opportunity to travel to An Giang and visit Chau Doc, remember to visit the Bac Tong Buddhist temple, located at the junction at the foot of Sam mountain and considered a historical symbol for architectural exchanges between Vietnam. and this famous India.
How to get to Tay An Co Tu Temple?
This long-standing religious building and An Giang tourist attraction are well-known to many tourists, located about 5km from the center of Chau Doc city. The temple belongs to the relic complex – Sam mountain tourist area. This area also has other famous landmarks such as Hang Pagoda, Thoai Ngoc Hau Tomb, and especially Ba Chua Xu Temple on Sam mountain .
Therefore, the way to the temple is quite easy and convenient. After arriving in An Giang, you can, depending on the schedule, depart to Sam Chau Doc mountain and then visit the temple and pray for peace at any time.
Xi’an itself was ranked as a “national architectural art” relic by the Ministry of Culture on July 10, 1980. This religious building was also recognized by the Vietnam Record Book Center as “a temple with architectural works” architecture combining Indian art style and the first ethnic ancient architecture in Vietnam”.
Explaining the name ‘Xian Ancient Temple’
Around the name of the ancient temple of Tay An Co Tu, there are many different opinions. Someone explained that Xi’an is a temple in the west of the ancient An Giang citadel. In addition, some opinions believe that the ancient temple has a name associated with the elements that built the pagoda from materials in Tran Tay, Tay Thanh. There is also a comment that Xi’an means to pray for peace in the southwestern region of the country. Either way, when the ancient people built the temple, they all had the same wish that the area with religious works in particular and the newly discovered land, in general, would from now on be peaceful, long-term presence, and increasingly flourishing.
History of the ancient pagoda of Tay An Chau Doc
According to researchers, Tay An pagoda was built by a Nguyen Dynasty mandarin of the Minh Mang dynasty named Nguyen Nhat An. The specific information about the time to build the pagoda is in 1820. Accordingly, after the official trip sent by the court to Cambodia, the official made a vow that when he returned, he would build a temple to worship Buddha right at the foot of Sam mountain. if the trip goes well.
Legend has it that the trip was successful beyond expectations, so when he returned home, the mandarin built a pagoda and immediately invited the first monk with the name Hai Tinh to be the abbot. Twenty years later, specifically in 1847, the temple was visited by a monk named Phap Tang as the abbot. But the special thing is that the newly arrived monk is also a patriotic scholar, so besides cultivating and taking care of the Tay An Co Tu temple, he has done a lot of things to help people to help other countries, which, respectable. especially setting up many farm camps around the Bay Nui An Giang area with the results of both reclaiming and reclamation of land, production as well as building bases against the French.
In addition, the monk also had the talent to make medicine for people’s diseases and had merit in training many famous disciples such as Tran Van Thanh, Tang Chu, Dinh Tay, Dao Xuyen, etc. All were patriotic scribes. once made the French invaders afraid of the Seven Mountains, not daring to approach. History has recognized the merits of this highly respected Venerable Master and honored him with the title of Buddha Master Tay An as well as worshiping and expressing gratitude after his death.
After many years since it was officially built, until now, until now, until now, the famous ancient temple of An Giang has undergone 7 generations of transmission as well as undergone many renovations. , embellished. Therefore, the architecture of the temple has changed a lot compared to the first time it was built. Currently, the pagoda has its structure according to the reconstruction under the Venerable Buu Tho’s reign in 1958.
The monk was also the one who built 3 more ancient houses along with the temple facade and repaired the main hall. Thereby, adding the imprints of Eastern architecture combined with Indian architecture to make a more distinctive and prominent feature for the ancient temple. Recently, ie from 1993 until now, the pagoda has continued to undergo restoration and new construction organized by Abbot Thich Hue Kinh. Through this time, many buildings have been added to serve the pilgrimage and worship needs of domestic and foreign tourists.
Artistic architecture of Xi’an pagoda
In general, Xi’an Ancient Temple was built on a high ground with an area of 15,000m2, the campus is large and airy. The temple has an architectural style bearing the familiar ancient oriental imprints of many Vietnamese Buddhist works in harmony with the unique architecture of India, with a hint of Southern style.
Visitors to An Giang , to Chau Doc, will admire the Tay An pagoda with the typical structure of the Southwest region. Accordingly, the center is the main hall, the right is the tower area, the smokehouse is on the left. If you observe from above, you can admire the panoramic view of the ruins of Tay An pagoda. Many people also compare the shape of the pagoda to a phoenix bird flapping its wings in the western sky.
Although it has been restored and repaired many times as well as solidly rebuilt with brick, stone and cement materials, the temple still retains its beauty from the first days. It is most evident in the prime location of the project. That’s where the temple rests its back – Sam mountain (284m above sea level). So when viewed from afar, the pagoda appears as a colorful brushstroke against the dark green background of the mountain. That beauty is further enhanced by the three ancient buildings in the temple grounds with onion-shaped round roofs, which are colorful but harmonious. In addition, the space in the temple is also very cool and quiet, with a total area of up to 15,000m2, making it an ideal destination for those who love silence and fresh air.
In general, the entire area of Tay An pagoda gives the impression of a harmonious and balanced architecture to visitors. The temple is located in the central area, surrounded by a large lobby area. Like most religious architectures in Vietnam, the first part that appears in the ancient temple of Tay An is the three-way gate.
This area has a two-level roof, roofed with tiles. Particularly, the roof is decorated with a lion statue, a picture of a dragon with a picture of a pearl, and patterns of apricot flowers, lotus flowers, chrysanthemums … often found in ancient temples. Tam Quan Gate is also divided into three gates with the middle part being the place to worship the statue of Quan Am Thi Kinh carrying Thi Mau’s child, on the left and right sides there is a signboard with the name of the pagoda as ” Xian ancient pagoda “.
If the three-way gate has a familiar traditional architecture, the main hall of Tay An pagoda has a different architecture from other temples in the area. In particular, the main floor is 2 floors high to worship Buddha located in the middle of the campus with a soaring dome design and has a round shape symbolizing the universe. The upper floor is the area where the Buddha Shakyamuni statue is located with an octagonal mold.
Particularly, the lower floor has 4 columns, with two guardians guarding. In addition, in front, there are statues of white elephants and black elephants guarding. The area of the bell tower and the empty floor has a quadrangular shape, symmetrically located on both sides, but at a lower position than the main floor. On the top is also decorated with statues of the four spirits including dragon, unicorn, qui, and phoenix.
The main hall of the ancient Xi’an temple worshiping Buddha in the Lam Te lineage with a very large statue of Shakyamuni Buddha in the middle and more than 200 statues of Buddha, Bodhisattvas, Arhats, Bat Bo Vajrayana, Jade Emperor, Huynh De, God Farms… big and small lying around. Most of the statues are made of wood, elaborately decorated and carved. All represent the unique features of Vietnamese sculpture art in the 19th century.
The next special feature in the decoration of the ancient temple is that there are many diaphragms and couplets here. Each of them is intricately carved with a history of more than a hundred years. All contribute to creating a unique religious work of An Giang land, worthy of the national architectural and artistic relic title and recognized by the Vietnam Record Book Center.
A small note is that you can choose the time to visit Tay An pagoda as well as make a pilgrimage to the Buddha in the evening to avoid being crowded and hot. Especially when traveling to Sam mountain in the right hot season. Besides, when coming to the temple, do not miss the opportunity to learn about the special architecture, different from other temples of Tay An. Another interesting information is that recently, the temple management board has installed more yellow lights for both lighting and decoration, making the temple scene become more majestic and magnificent. You can take pictures to check in here because of the beautiful scenery, like splendid castles in the night.
Not only is it a famous ancient temple, but Tay An ancient temple is also listed in the list of famous Chau Doc tourist destinations that any visitor to An Giang wants to visit, admire the scene of the temple as well as the bridge. peace, pray for fortune. Don’t miss the unique and poetic ancient pagoda scene in Tay An Sam mountain when you have the opportunity to come to the West.
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