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ARC Home > Projects > China projects :
Buddhist Mountains | Mountain of Five Peaks | Sacred Mountain of Emei Shan | Two major eco-agreements from Chinese Buddhists | ARC's work with sacred mountains - in Chinese

Mountain of Five Peaks

One of the many monasteries that have survived on Wu Tai Shan

Wu Tai Shan is the best established of the four Buddhist mountains. Here development has been controlled, and the monasteries and their environment are better protected than on the other three sacred mountains. Indeed ARC has recommended that Wu Tai Shan should be seen as a model of how all sacred mountains in China can be managed.

‘Wu Tai’ means ‘five terrace’ and describes the five flat peaks of this sacred area in Shanxi province in northern China. It is a huge site, and very spread out – meaning that the impact of pilgrims and tourists is dispersed across the landscape. The area is remote, and because it is associated with Mongolian rather than Chinese Buddhism it has been better protected, even during the worst Cultural Revolution purges, under the Ethnic Minority Policy.

The first temples were built here 2000 years ago, and today 58 temples and monasteries survive relatively unscathed in the area. All are dedicated to Manjushri, the Bodhisattva of wisdom and virtue.

An important part of ARC’s work is not only to find ways of solving problems but also to find successful models that can be used on other projects: Wu Tai Shan will be one of them.

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