October 26, 2011

SINGAPURA: Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum

Art, culture, history and religion, all in one roof! The Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum is hard to
miss when taking a stroll in Chinatown. Its striking red colour 4 storey building with architectural styles
based on the Tang Dynasty just calls out to you no matter how tired you are from all that walking and
shopping.


There are two entrances to the temple, we entered through the South Bridge gate and were greeted
by two giant warrior statues that is supposed to protect the holy places inside. There is no admission
fee but it is a place of worship so dress appropriately - no bear backs, no off the shoulders and no mini-
skirts.




The temple is dedicated to Maiterya Buddha or “the compassionate one”. Its main worship area or the
Maiterya Hall also called the 100 Dragons Hall has warm and calming colours and is filled with Buddha
statues. Entering the hall is like entering a different world altogether, so serene and peaceful despite
the tourist with their cameras, so removed from the frenzied alleys Chinatown.






Behind the Maiterya Hall is the Universal Wisdom Hall where the goddess of mercy Bodhissattva
Avalokitesvara sits on an elaborate lotus throne, the sides of the hall are surrounded by Zodiac
Protectors.



Unfortunately, we were already beyond beat at this point that we could no longer check out the other
remaining floors, but here’s what you can expect: the mezzanine floor contains wax replicas of famous
monks; the 2nd floor for art exhibitions like calligraphy and paintings, there is also a tea house on the
same floor; the 3rd floor is a museum and contains a vast collection of Buddha artefacts; the 4th holds
the controversial tooth relics of the Buddha (some dental experts say that the relics were actually those
of an animal).

Oh well, another reason to go back.

HOW TO GET THERE: the temple is located at 288 South Bridge Road, take the MRT North East Line to Chinatown station.  



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6 comments:

  1. Hayan na naman nakakainggit.. Wish ko talaga makakita ng ganito in person. SA MAcho Temple in La Union parang ganto na rin, un na ang pinakamalapit na nakita ko pero not so contented. May kulang.

    I really admire the influence of Chinese architecture and it's "clarity" and "identity". Once you saw a building like this, you know it is linked to Chinese influence... Grabe. tnx for sharing such fascinating journal.

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  2. Awesome new header you guys! Anyways, so this is the Tooth Relic Temple in Singapore. I've seen Sri Lanka's so I wanna visit this one in SG as well. And maybe the ones in Taiwan, Japan and China someday in the distant future.

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  3. I remember this was the first temple I visited overseas, after my visit here, I thought ok that's enough for the day and it's time to move to other religion, sensory overload lang :)

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  4. Hi Ed! Yes, distinctly Chinese! Our pleasure to share, thanks!:-D

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  5. Hi Gay! That would be awesome! We wish to do that as well. Hay so many things to see and do, so little time and travel dollars haha!

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  6. Hi Claire! I know what you mean, haha! And we only get to visit the first floor at that! This temple/slash museum is indeed packed:-D

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