All Beijingers have walked through the Second Ring Road, and half of the Chinese people have also walked this road. Anyone who has walked this road knows that there is a Tianning Temple Bridge on the West Second Ring Road, and there is a tall bridge beside the bridge. Pagodas and chimneys. That pagoda is the Liao Pagoda in Tianning Temple, and that chimney is the second hottest place in Beijing. The second thermal power plant is the second thermal power plant in Beijing, and the first thermal power plant is in Bawangfen.

Where there is a pagoda, there must be a temple, so the Tianning Temple must be under the Tianning Temple Pagoda, right? Moreover, it stands to reason that this temple must be older than the tower. Therefore, this Tianning Temple must be in the front and its pagoda in the back. In most cases, the temples are gone, but the towers can still remain. The Liao Pagoda we saw in Chifeng two days ago is also missing the temple and the pagoda is still there. A few years ago, I also saw a Tianning Temple in Zhengding. That temple is gone, but the Lingxiao Pagoda in the temple is still there, and that pagoda is an older Tang Pagoda.

To say that the history of this Tianning Temple in Beijing is quite long, it can be traced back to the era of Emperor Xiaowen of the Northern Wei Dynasty. The Northern Wei Dynasty was the most powerful country in the north during the Southern and Northern Dynasties. At the beginning, Emperor Daowu Tuobagui made his capital in Pingcheng, which is now Datong. Later, Emperor Xiaowen Tuoba Hong moved the capital to Luoyang, which promoted the prosperity of the Northern Wei Dynasty. The Northern Wei Dynasty was the regime of the Xianbei people, and they were also a minority. They had a very cruel system that "the son and mother die". After Tuoba Hong was established as the prince, his biological mother was given to death. During Emperor Xiaowen's time, there was no Beijing city, but Youzhou. Xingfo in the Northern Wei Dynasty built a Guanglin Temple in Youzhou at that time. I didn’t say the specific year, but I said it was the Yanxing period, so it was around 475 AD, and it was also 1,500 years old. In the second year of Renshou (602 A.D.) in the reign of Yang Jian, Emperor Wen of the Sui Dynasty, the Han people became emperor again, and their capital was Daxing City, which is now Xi'an. There is still only Youzhou City in Beijing, and this Guanglin Temple was renamed Hongye Temple by the new monk.

Two hundred years after the Nirvana of Sakyamuni Buddha, Ashoka became the largest king in India. He later converted to Buddha and began to worship Buddha relics. In the first century AD, King Kanishka expanded the Sangchi Pagoda built by Ashoka to become the largest stupa in India. In 2006, the Indian government funded the construction of a Buddhist temple at the White Horse Temple in Luoyang. This Buddhist temple was built in imitation of the Sangchi Pagoda, but there are no Buddhist relics inside. The White Horse Temple was built by Indian monks during the Eastern Han Dynasty when Buddhism spread to the east. Since then, many Buddhist relics have been introduced to China. In the period of Emperor Wen of the Sui Dynasty, Buddhism flourished again, and Emperor Wen of the Sui Dynasty built pagodas to enshrine Buddhist relics everywhere. Some people say that King Ashoka of India sent a batch of Buddhist relics to Emperor Wen of Sui Dynasty, but it is actually impossible, because Emperor Wen of Sui Dynasty was seven or eight hundred years later than King Ashoka, and King Kanishka was five hundred years later. Anyway, Emperor Wen of the Sui Dynasty got a batch of Buddhist relics, and he built pagodas to store these Buddhist relics everywhere. It is said that a total of 30 pagodas were built in various places. Hongye Temple also built a pagoda here, also for the secret collection of Buddhist relics. That is to say, the Tianning Temple Pagoda existed as early as the second year of Renshou in the Sui Dynasty. It is said that this pagoda in the Sui Dynasty was a wooden pagoda, and wooden pagodas are difficult to last. The oldest existing wooden pagoda is Yingxian wooden pagoda in Shuozhou, Shanxi Province, which was built in the second year of Liao Qingning (1056). In the second year of Kaiyuan (713 A.D.) of Tang Xuanzong Li Longji who was close to Yang Yuhuan, an eminent monk came to this Hongye Temple and changed the name of the temple to Tianwang Temple. During the reign of Tang Wuzong Li Yan, the Buddha was destroyed in Huichang, and the Hongye Temple was destroyed enough. The wooden pagoda must have been destroyed. I don’t know if the Buddhist relics inside were also destroyed. Although the wooden pagoda of the Sui Dynasty in Tianning Temple is gone, you can probably make up its appearance. It must be a pavilion-style pagoda similar to the wooden pagoda in Yingxian County. Most of the pavilions were in the Sui and Tang Dynasties.
After the Sui Dynasty came the Tang Dynasty, and after the Tang Dynasty came the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms. At the end of Tang Dynasty, Li Keyong, the chief who suppressed the Huangchao Uprising, rose up and became the governor of Hedong. His son, Li Cunxu, was more radical and proclaimed himself king. This is the Later Tang Dynasty in the Five Dynasties. Later Tang Emperor Li Congke's Hedong Jiedu envoy Shi Jingtang, a member of the Shatuo tribe, raised troops in Taiyuan to overthrow Li Congke, but he couldn't defeat him. He recruited Khitan people from the northern Liao Kingdom to help on the condition that he ceded the sixteen prefectures of Youyun. With the support of the Khitan people, Shi Jingtang established the Later Jin Dynasty and became the son-in-law of the Khitan Liao King. After the Khitan people entered the customs, they established the accompanying capital Nanjing Youdu Mansion, also called Yanjing, on the basis of Youzhou City in Beijing, which is located in the area of ​​Guang'anmen today. Then they will definitely do some urban construction and civil engineering in Yanjing, build houses and build roads. This Tianwang Temple was in Yanjing at that time, and it was also rebuilt and became a large temple. The emperor of the Liao Kingdom usually sent a relative of the emperor to live in Yanjing to guard the southern territory for him. By the time of Emperor Tianzuo, the last emperor of the Liao Kingdom, Emperor Tianzuo's uncle Yeluchun and Xingjun Jiedushi Yelu Dashi were stationed in Yanjing. They continued to engage in urban construction, and one of the projects was to build a tower at Tennoji Temple.
After Jin Taizu Wanyan Aguda conquered Liaozhongjing, Emperor Tianzuo had to flee to the end of the world. After Yanjing lost contact with Emperor Tianzuo, this uncle Yeluchun took over his nephew and became Emperor Liao. In the Central Plains, it was the fourth year of Xuanhe reign of Emperor Huizong of the Northern Song Dynasty. After Emperor Tianxi came to power, he relied on Yelu Dashi to resist the Northern Song Dynasty's attack; at the same time, he continued to build those commemorative projects. The tower of Tianwang Temple has just been completed at this time, but I don't know if there are any Buddha relics in the tower. Not long after the tower was erected, about three to four months, Yeluchun bent back after drinking too much and having a myocardial infarction. Therefore, the pagoda of Tianwang Temple became the only trace left by Yeluchun in history. The Tianning Temple Pagoda we see now was built by Yeluchun. When the pagoda was repaired a few years ago, a stone carving was dug out, which is the monument of building the pagoda. It said that the builder of the pagoda was Kou Shiying and the time was Tianzuo The tenth year of Emperor Tianqing, that is, 1120 AD. After that, the Liao Dynasty perished; the Beiliao Dynasty created by Yeluchun collapsed within a few years. Yelu Dashi was captured and escaped. He traveled westward to build his Xiliao, and lived for more than 80 years. The remnants of the Yelu Khitan people in the Northeast created another Eastern Liao, which did not last for a few years. Therefore, the tower of Tianwang Temple became the last tower of the Liao Dynasty, which is very representative. After Jin Taizu Wanyan Aguda defeated the Liao Kingdom, he took over Yanjing City, and built his own capital here, which is Jinzhongdu. The rise of the Wanyan Tribe is entirely due to the inappropriate advance and retreat of Emperor Tianzuo at the end of the Liao Dynasty, and the involvement of a big bird. There is a very powerful eagle called Haidongqing in the Jurchen area. Emperor Tianzuo asked the Wanyan tribe to pay a tribute to several Haidongqings every year. Later, Haidongqing became less and less, and Emperor Tianzuo was still greedy, forcing Wanyan Aguda to lead his tribe to fight at night, no, it should be a rebellion. Two years ago, when we went to Jilin to enjoy the rime, we saw that most of the local Manchus had a Costinopsis on their arms. This Emperor Tianzuo's subjugation was really a bloody case caused by a bird. Jin Taizu Wanyan Aguda finally took Yanjing and returned to the west in the second year. It was not until the fourth emperor Hailing Wang Yanliang that he moved the capital from Shangjing Huining Mansion (now Acheng, a suburb of Harbin) to Yanjing, and Yanjing became Jinzhongdu. During the Jin Dynasty, Tianwang Temple was the first temple in the city. The Jin emperors of all generations cared for and managed it painstakingly, and the temple reached its peak. Moreover, another eminent monk followed King Hailing to the central capital and lived in Tianwang Temple to pray for Buddha. He changed the name of the temple to Dawan'an Temple by the way. After King Hailing, Jin Shizong built a Xiangshan Temple in Xiangshan, and Jin Zhangzong later named Xiangshan Temple "Dayong'an Temple". These are two famous "An" series temples in the central capital of the Jin Dynasty.
The incense of this Great Wan'an Temple continued in the Jin Dynasty and the Yuan Dynasty until the end of the Yuan Dynasty, but in the Yuan Dynasty, Tianwang Temple was no longer within the city walls of the Yuan Dynasty. During the period of Emperor Huizong at the end of the Yuan Dynasty, conflicts from all walks of life intensified one after another, causing people everywhere to stand up one after another. Among them, the Red Turban Army led by Guo Zixing was very powerful. Guo Zixing had no emperor's order, and he lay down again due to illness shortly after standing up. At this time, Zhu Yuanzhang stepped forward one after another, and took over the pistol inherited from Guo Zixing. He was destined to wear yellow clothes. Zhu Yuanzhang led the generals and his minions to lay down Jiqing Road, which is now Nanjing, and then he changed the name of Jiqing Road to Yingtianfu. The first year of Hongwu, that is, 1368 AD. Next, the Ming army captured Yuan Dadu in one go. Yuan Dadu was the capital of Yuan Huizong at that time, and of course he was going to resist desperately. In this city sat a last emperor shouting soldiers to guard the city, and outside the city was the founding emperor's army waving flags and shouting. Look, these two groups The emperor's army fought in the dark. In the end, the last emperor had never beaten the first emperor, and escaped from Dadu to Shangdu. Zhu Yuanzhang said that this Yuan Huizong ran well, and he was in accordance with the weather, so he named him "Yuan Shun Emperor" and changed the name of Yuan Dadu to Beiping. The marshals of the Ming army who attacked Dadu were Xu Da, commander of the first group army, and Chang Yuchun, chief of staff. They must celebrate their victory. There is no record of setting fire to slaughter the city in history, but the Tianwang Temple outside the city is obviously at this time It was destroyed, and only one tower remained, which was built of bricks and could not be burned.
In the thirty-first year of Ming Hongwu, Taizu Zhu Yuanzhang let go of the hand holding the seal. Zhu Di, the king of Yan, and Yao Guangxiao, the counselor, came and went in Guqiu, and lost Emperor Jianwen to Guqiu. Zhu Di, King of Yan, got his wish and sat on the unheated dragon chair of Emperor Jianwen, and grasped the hot seal handle. He ascended the foundation in Yingtian Mansion, and then changed his name to Yongle. After Emperor Yongle ascended the throne, he changed Beiping Mansion into Shuntian Mansion and began to build the capital, which was called Beijing. It didn't take long for the Ming capital to be moved from Yingtian Mansion to Beijing. One more thing that Emperor Yongle did after he ascended the throne was to rebuild Tianwang Temple. He not only rebuilt the temple, but also rebuilt the Liao Pagoda. In the tenth year of Xuande (1435 A.D.) of Emperor Xuanzong Zhu Zhanji of the Ming Dynasty, the temple was renamed again, which is the current name "Tianning Temple". The origin of Tianning Temple was built by decree. At the end of the Ming Dynasty, Tianning Temple was destroyed by war again; it was rebuilt during the Qianlong period of the Qing Dynasty, and became a famous temple at that time. This Tianning Temple has never entered the city since it was framed outside the city wall in the Yuan Dynasty. In the early Ming Dynasty, Beijing only had the inner city wall, and the south side was the front three gates; On the line of You'anmen, from the west of the outer city to Guang'anmen, there is a west gate with the inner city. Tianning Temple is neither in the inner city nor in the outer city, but it is close to the outer city wall.
In the twenty-sixth year of the Republic of China (1937), the center of Tianning Temple was still the Liao Pagoda. Part of the building in front of the pagoda was demolished and the mountain gate was rebuilt; but all the buildings behind the pagoda were abandoned. What we see now is the revised appearance during the Republic of China. The most recent renovation was in 2007, and it was often painted and plastered, so it still looks brand new now.

This Shanmen Temple is similar to other temples in Beijing, such as the Zhusong Temple we saw on Shatan North Street last time, with stone arches and stone arch windows, gray tiles and a single eaves hard mountain top, and the lower part of the roof is a beam frame without bucket arches. Go in and take a look, this is the combination of Shanmen Hall and Tianwang Hall. In the middle sits Maitreya Buddha with a big belly. There is no niche or backlight, and Wei Tuo stands back to back behind him. There are no statues of the four heavenly kings on both sides, but colorful portraits painted on the walls. The plaque on the door is neither Zhu Di's nor Qianlong's, but the calligraphy of modern calligraphers when it was rebuilt in recent years.

After entering the mountain gate, you can have a panoramic view of everything. The Bell and Drum Towers, the East and West Side Halls and the main hall are all in the same courtyard. You can also see the Liao Pagoda and Erre's chimney behind.

The bell tower is in the shade, look at the Drum Tower, it is freshly painted, it should be the one rebuilt in the Republic of China, with a well-regulated Qing Dynasty construction style.

The west side hall has a hard mountain top with a rolling shed, and one ridge is missing.

Standing at the entrance of the Xibei Hall, you can see all the protagonists behind. During the Qianlong period, there is no courtyard wall between the front and back stage of the merit monument, the main hall and the tower behind. It is now a cultural relic protection unit. Although you can worship Buddha, you can only burn incense in the yard. The car in the shade should belong to the director of the management unit or the chief of staff.

Look at the main hall, not the Daxiong Hall, but the Jieying Hall.

This Jieyin Hall is the second only ancient building in the temple after the Liao Pagoda, and it should have been rebuilt in the 21st year of Qianlong (1756). Sitting in the middle of the hall is a golden nanmu connecting Buddha statue, that is, Amitabha Buddha. On the west gable wall is a statue of Mahasthama Bodhisattva, and on the east gable wall is a statue of Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva. These three Buddhas and Bodhisattvas are called the Three Saints of the West. The Jieyin hall is usually in the backyard of the temple. There must have been another hall in front of this hall, and it should be for the statue of Sakyamuni Buddha. I asked the volunteers in the hall, and said that there was a Sakyamuni Hall in front of the earliest, but it was gone when Qianlong rebuilt it. Ordinarily, there is Maitreya Buddha in the mountain gate, and Sakyamuni Buddha in the middle, so this apse should be the Lantern Buddha; the Western Amitabha Buddha should be on the right hand side of Sakyamuni in the middle hall, and the Eastern Medicine Buddha Buddha is on the left hand side. This temple has been built and destroyed several times, and the Buddhist hall and statues may have been messed up.

The size of this hall is not very high, five rooms wide and three rooms deep, with green glazed tiles and a single eaves hard hilltop, without bucket arches and beams. When I went in, I found that all the exposed beams, columns, ridges, and rafters on the roof were all old. I didn't find any reconstruction records, but they should also be from the Qianlong period. I guess the frame of this hall is in the past, and the walls may be new, or new skins have been pasted on them. Looking at the hall from inside, it is still very beautiful. What beauty can be done without brackets, it is really amazing.

There is no courtyard wall behind Jieyin hall, it is directly the pagoda courtyard, and the one standing inside is the famous Tianning Temple pagoda.

There is a piece of white jade carving in this courtyard. I went up and looked at it carefully. It is a statue of Avalokitesvara, and it must have been a tribute paid by pilgrims who have made a fortune in recent years.

There is also a white marble xumizuo in front of the pagoda. This should be an altar, a modern product. There are no incense burners and vases on the table.

Or watch the tower. This is a typical octagonal brick pagoda with dense eaves in the Liao Dynasty. This style of pagoda was popular in the Liao and Jin Dynasties. Look at the lower part first.

At the bottom there is a three-foot-high green brick platform, and then there is a double-layer Xumizuo base. The Xumizuo on the upper floor is a common style. There are Buddha statues in the Buddhist altar at the pot gate, and Vajra warriors on the pillars outside the altar. The Xumizuo on the lower floor is very interesting. Instead of Buddha statues in the altar of the pot gate, there are lion heads protruding outward; There is actually a layer of brick-carved railings on the Xumizuo, which is really advanced! This has never been seen in other Liao towers. Above the hook rail are three layers of lotus petals, which is the lotus seat. It is said that in the past, on important days, such as Buddha's birthday, the monks in the temple would fill these lotus petals with lamp oil and insert a lamp grass, and all of them would be lit after dark. I thought that scene must be very magical, I just wanted to see how much lamp oil each lotus petal could hold, and I jumped my feet hard, no, I couldn't reach it.

Starting from the lowest floor of Xumizuo, it shrinks a circle every time it goes up. The lotus seat is the smallest, but the lotus seat is still two circles larger than the tower body. Visually, the lotus seat is the same size as the first floor eaves of the tower body. On the whole, the tower has a very solid foundation, so the tower will appear particularly stable, giving people a particularly solid feeling. On the lotus pedestal is the brick pagoda with eight sides. Look at the brick carvings on the south side of the pagoda.

So beautiful! In the middle is an arched gate, with two Vajra warriors standing on both sides of the gate. The statues of Vajra warriors on the brick pagoda of the Liao Dynasty are all muscular, and they all look very tense. The French realist sculptor Rodin's statues also look like this. If you look at his "Bronze Age", it is a replica of the statue of King Kong here. I guess Rodin must have traveled to Beijing back then, and sighed under this tower, and when he went back, he made a statue of a "Bronze Age" warrior. Think back to the male actors in the bodybuilding competition, are they all in the pose of King Kong wrestlers here? Of course, they have to practice those bumps on their bodies first. On the top of the Vajra Warriors are two flying Bodhisattvas flying through the clouds and fog, and on the top is a canopy with curtains. Looking at the door frame again, there are two dragons playing with beads on the arch coupon. This door has a frame, a lintel, a fan, and a hairpin, which is not uncommon. I have seen such brick-carved coupon doors in Yinshan Tallinn. What surprised me the most is that there are three crosses and six bowls of lattice flowers in the lattice core of this door leaf. This kind of lattice flowers is only used in the imperial palace. It is only found in the Forbidden City of the Ming Dynasty palace, and there are at most four crosses and four bowls outside the palace. Would the Khitan people of the Liao Dynasty have mastered the top-level construction style of the Han people and used it in temples? There is a statue of Sakyamuni Buddha outside this door, which is still of full specifications: the Sumeru seat, lotus seat and backlight are all complete. In the lintel of the arched coupon above is a statue of Vairocana Buddha. His left hand is Kassapa and his right hand is Ananda. The brick carving on the front is really shocking, extremely fine, dignified Buddha statue and King Kong with claws and teeth. Looking at the degree of damage of the Vajra Warrior statue and the integrity of those Buddha statues, I guess the Vajra is an original work from the Liao Dynasty, and the Buddha statue may be a new work from the Qing Dynasty or modern times.

On the side is a mullion window, and there are also brick statues. The portraits on both sides of the window are no longer recognizable.

The eastern front is basically the same as the southern one. There is no statue of Sakyamuni Buddha in front of the door, and there is also a statue of Vairocana Buddha in the lintel, which is Dainichi Tathagata. The gestures are different from the one in the south.

The brick carvings on the north facade are badly damaged, and only the Thousand-Handed Avalokitesvara statue in the lintel can be seen.

The brick carving on this side window is Manjushri Bodhisattva riding a green-haired lion and heading south.

The circle of brick carvings on the pagoda is really great. The Daming Pagoda we just saw in Chifeng is also an octagonal brick pagoda with dense eaves in the Liao Dynasty, but it is far less exquisite than this one. The tower body of this Tianning Temple has thirteen layers of dense eaves, and each layer is decorated with brick-carved wood-like beams, rafters, ridges and bucket arches. The most amazing thing is that each layer of eaves is covered with green glazed tiles and glazed ridge Beasts and immortals ride chickens, and they even have a complete set of beasts, which is too precise! There are wind chimes hanging under the ridge of the roof. I think it should have been rebuilt in recent years. The Tasha on the top of the pagoda is a brick orb on a double-layered lotus seat. It should be the Moon Orb. There are still many brick pagodas with dense eaves from the Liao Dynasty preserved in northern China, all of which have basically the same style, but this Tianning Temple pagoda is the last of all Liao pagodas, so it can be made so delicate. When the pagoda was built, the Liao Kingdom had come to a dead end because of the extravagance of Emperor Tianzuo. Since then, the fineness of the pagoda can also reflect the luxurious atmosphere of the world at that time. Some people say that the Linglong Pagoda on Linglong Road was built after the Tianning Temple Pagoda. In fact, Linglong Pagoda is closer to other brick pagodas with dense eaves in the Liao Dynasty, such as those in Yinshan Pagoda Forest. The biggest difference between the Tianning Temple Pagoda and other brick pagodas with dense eaves in the Liao Dynasty is that its base is larger than the body of the tower, and the other is the outline of the thirteen-storey dense eaves above. Other Liao towers are conventionally straight lines; Only the tower of Tianning Temple is an arc that shrinks inward from the top, which was called "shousha" in the Tang Dynasty. Therefore, the Tianning Temple Pagoda is a special case in the Liao Pagoda, and the Linglong Pagoda imitates the practice of the Liao Pagoda.

A courtyard has been rebuilt behind the pagoda, and there is a vertical flower gate that has just been painted with oil. The workers at the gate say that it is the place where the master lives, and they are not allowed to enter. But apart from volunteers in plain clothes, I didn't see a monk in uniform in the entire courtyard.

There is also a small wishful door on the northwest corner. I probed inside and saw that there is a narrow road inside and a row of houses on the east. It is said that Yao Guangxiao, the military adviser of Emperor Yongle, lived in the monk's house in the northwest corner of Tianning Temple after his retirement. I guess it should not be here. The northwest corner of the Ming Dynasty is no longer there.

Standing in the shadow of the pagoda, take a look at its outline.

I have walked countless times on the Second Ring Road and seen this pagoda countless times. This time I finally took a closer look at it personally. It is truly the best of the Liao Pagodas. The proportions of its parts are very coordinated, and the shape of the tower can be felt from a distance. It is not as fat as Chifeng Daming Tower, nor is it too small and top-heavy like Yinshan Tower Linliao Tower. In addition to this kind of dense eaves tower, the brick towers of the Liao Dynasty also have imitation wood pavilion towers. I have seen two Liao Dynasty brick towers in Zhuozhou, both of which are imitation wood pavilion towers. At that time, Zhuozhou was the southernmost of the sixteen prefectures of Youyun, close to the Northern Song Dynasty, and learned to imitate the Song-style pavilions over the years. In the north, although there are many brick pagodas with dense eaves, many finer Han tower-building styles have been incorporated, gradually reducing the rough style of nomads. Therefore, this Tianning Temple Pagoda is the pinnacle of the architectural art of brick pagodas with dense eaves in the Liao Dynasty.

I recall seeing a unique Liao pagoda, which is different from all Liao pagodas. It has elements of Han Chinese pavilions, Indian bowl-covered elements, and Nepalese bowl-covered tower elements. They are mixed together and are unique. This particular brick pagoda of the Liao Dynasty is the White Pagoda in Jizhou, Tianjin, in the Guanyin Hall in the south of Dule Temple. There are pictures in my short article "Walk to Jizhou, the Sound of Drums in Yuyang Has Died", which can be found online.

When looking at the Liao Pagoda, you must see this Tianning Temple Pagoda last, not only because it is the last pagoda in the Liao Dynasty; but most importantly, because it is the most exquisite Liao Pagoda. There is a saying that "you don't look at the mountain when you come back from Huangshan Mountain", and it also means to look at the Tianning Temple Pagoda.

Finally, take another look back at this exquisite Tianning Pagoda before leaving.