Temple Of Heaven


By admin - Posted on 28 March 2008

At first light on the winter solstice, after a night of fasting and ritual cleansing, the emperor would offer ritual sacrifices and make a report to heaven. He would also visit on the 15th day of the first lunar month to pray for a good harvest. Teh temple was vitally important to the imperial universe as it was the link between the emperor and Heaven. Temple of Heaven include a large verdant part that's worth visiting on its own, especially in the early morning when limber septuagenarians practice calisthenics. The Temple of Heaven incorporates several religious structures, the crown jewel of which is the Hall for the Prayer of Good Harvests(祈年殿). The layout of the compound reflects its religious purpose and so adheres to geomantic precepts. For instance, the northern end of the park is curved while the southern end is suqare, reflecting the traditional Chinese conception of heaven as round and the earth as square. Likewise, the park gates are located at the four cardinal points.

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