White Cloud Temple
Located in southwestern Beijing, White Cloud Temple,
the headquarters of the Quanzhen Daoist Sect, was founded in the
8th century. Tang dynasty emperor Xuanzong ordered its construction
to house a stone seated statue of Laozi, the founder of Daoism.
The original temple burned down in 1202 and the only article that
survived was the stone statue which is on display in the exhibition
Kublai Khan had the temple rebuilt and in 1224,
invited the famous Daoist monk Qiu Chuji to live there. At his passing,
Qiu was buried in the temple complex and there is now a Hall of
the Patriach Qiu devoted to his worship.
There is also a stele with calligraphy by Qing
emperor Qianlong recording in detail the history of the temple and
the life of Qiu Chuji. Further renovations were made to the temple
in the Qing dynasty and it is a good example of Daoist architecture
from the period.