Interfaith Event: Introduction to Buddhism, Wollongong, Australia


Intro to Buddhism

Nan Tien Temple, 19 – 22 February 2013

Nan Tien Temple is the largest Buddhist Temple in the Southern Hemisphere and is located in the suburb of Berkeley, on the southern outskirts of the Australian city of Wollongong –approximately 80 km south of Sydney. Nan Tien is one of the branch temples of Fo Guang Shan, founded in 1967 by Venerable Master Hsing Yun, which has over 120 branches worldwide, and more than 1.5 million members. Nan Tien is a Chinese term which means ‘southern paradise. Fo Guang Shan Buddhism is from the Mahayana tradition which emphasises that Buddhahood is within everyone’s potential reach. Fo Guang Shan followers strive to bring Buddhism into daily life and describe their philosophy as ‘Humanistic Buddhism.’

The Temple was completed in 1995. The site of the Australian branch’s temple was reputedly chosen by Hsing Yun due to its proximity to Mount Kembla, which is said to have an auspicious resemblance to a recumbent lion. It overlooks both Mount Keira and Mount Kembla. The Nan Tien complex was built using traditional techniques and materials by Chinese craftsmen, but with numerous modern features. Occupying a semi-rural hillside site several square kilometres in size, it is set amidst beautiful landscaped gardens.

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