GLOBAL TREASURES: China (Puning Si, Temple of Universal Peace)

GLOBAL TREASURES: China (Puning Si, Temple of Universal Peace)


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Global Treasures: Puning Si, Temple of Universal Peace
Ullman, Frank - Television Director

Catalogue Number: GTR-DVD-1082
UPC: 879061006814

Global Treasures - History's Most Protected Monuments - Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration. Places as unique and diverse as the wilds of East Africa's Serengeti, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Baroque cathedrals of Latin America make up our world's heritage. Join us as we explore one of these protected monuments.

Puning Si is one of eight splendid monasteries and temples that are located northeast of the emperor's summer residence of Chengde, in the Chinese province of Hebei. During the 18th century, Manshu Emperor Kangxi ordered the construction of the Great Palace and its surrounding Eight Outer Temples.

Puning Si, the "Temple of Universal Peace," was built between 1755 and 1758. The area was divided into two architecturally-different sections, and because the temple was constructed during the time of an important military event, its façade conformed to traditional Chinese Han design. Its architecture was meant to symbolise China's power over the feared Mongolian Dshungars.

The Mahayana Pavilion represents the centre of Buddhist religious belief, namely Sumeru Mountain. Thus, the five-story building is located in the middle of an architectural mandala. Several small halls and terraces surround the impressive pavilion that is one of the greatest examples of its kind. Each one of the architectural elements that are located close to the Pavilion adhere to the disciplined structure of the Buddhist universe.

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