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Donglin Monastery

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Located northwest of Lushan Mountain in Jiujiang City, Donglin Monastery is renowned as the cradle of Chinese Pure Land Buddhism. The monastery has a history of over 1,600 years; it was established by Monk Hui Yuan in the year 384 during the Eastern Jin Dynasty (317 - 420). The monastery with many grand structures and the profound culture of Buddhism attracts many visitors from both home and abroad each year.

The monastery covers an area of about 120,000 square meters (29.7 acres) with a floor area of about 4,500 square meters (1.1 acres). The surrounding mountains make it rather remote and secluded. The monastery was quite prosperous during the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907), and there were more than 300 halls and rooms at that time. Being the major sermon place of Buddhism for a long time, Donglin Monastery established its fame and prestige firmly. Jian Zhen (688 - 763), a dignitary of the Tang Dynasty, rested at the Donglin Monastery after his fifth failure to travel to Japan. During his stay, he and the Donglin monks had a good exchange of thoughts. Then in the year 753, Jian Zhen together with Zhi En, a monk in Donglin, made a sixth trip to Japan and arrived the next year. Thus began the mission of prevailing Buddhism and the Chinese civilization.

Destroyed during the Anti-Japanese War (1973 - 1945), the existing buildings were rebuilt in recent years. Along the central axis visitors can appreciate the gate; the Great Buddha's Hall attached to Arhat Hall, Mile hall, and Shenyun Hall, attached to Sanxiao Hall (Three Laughers Hall), depositary of Buddhist texts and other relics.

There are a great many histories and legends preserved in the monastery and some of the halls. The bridge at the front of the monastery is called Huxi (Tiger Stream) Bridge. Legend has it that the master of the Donglin Monastery, Hui Yuan, had focused on studying Buddhism and vowed not to go across the bridge; one day while seeing two of his friends off he was so preoccupied by conversation that he walked across the bridge, when the trio heard a tiger roaring they realized the cause and burst out in laughter. Thus in Sanxiao Hall (Three Laughers Hall) recorded the beautiful legend and preserved it for your exploration. Visitors will also discover more legends about the Shenyun Hall, and the Smart Spring.

 Entrance Fee: CNY 10 

A. Take Bus No. 7 at Jiujiang Long-distance Bus Station and get off Donglin Monastery.
B. Take Bus No. 102 at Jiujiang Railway Station and get off at Shili Dalou, transfer to the mini bus to Tongyuan or Saiyang and get off at Donglin Village, and then walk for about 1 km (0.6 miles), you will find the monastery.
C. By Taxi: CNY 35 from Jiujiang Railway Station or Jiujiang City; CNY 25 from Lushan Railway Station.

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