Site of Cao'an Manichean Temple and Manichaeism is on Wanshanfeng
Moutainin Sunei Village, Yudian Town, Jinjiang City, 19 kilometers
away from the South Gate of central Quanzhou. In August, 1987, the
First International Manichaeism Colloquium was held in Lund
University, Sweden. The Manichean Buddha statue in Cao'an Temple
was the memorial symbol of the colloquium. In February, 1991, a
"Silk Road of the Sea"delegation from the United Nations
Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization visited Cao'an
Temple and deemed it as the "biggest discovery"of the
Cao'an Temple was built in front of a mountain. It is a stone
temple, in the architecture form of Dan Yan Xie Shan Shi. It is
about 3 Kaijian wide, with four rafters. The special design of the
crossbeam under the eave makes the temple simplistic and antique.
The sitting Manichean Amitabha relief sculpture on the cliff is the
most precious in the Temple. Its shrine is round, with a diameter
of 1.68 meters, and the sitting statue itself is 1.52 meters long.
It is unique that the face of the Buddha's statue is light
greenish-blue while his hands are pink, with greyish-white clothes.
This is because the sculptor took advantage of the three natural
colors in rocks. This is the only existing stone statue of the
Manichean Buddha in the world, so it is a national heritage
conservation site. On the top left corner of the niche for the
Buddha is carved a five-line passage in regular script expressing
the thanks of the founder of the temple, Chen Zhenze.
On the top right corner is a roughly-carved passage remembering
various people's contribution to the temple. These characters are
of great value because this is the only existing stone statue of
Manichean Buddha in the world and the only written evidence of the
construction era of the temple. Also, it is first-hand historical
material essential in studying Zoroastrianism in Quanzhou.
Distinctions: Site of Cao'an Manichean Temple and Manichaeism is the only
well-preserved site of Manichaeism. It is an important spot for
studying the history of world religions and the communication
between east and west. It is also a national heritage conservation
How to Get There:Take the special coach from Quanzhou to Anhai and get off at