Posted by: danielfee | October 9, 2012

Travel Photo of the Day 10-09-2012

Punishment in “Hell” – Fengdu, China

Punishment in “Hell”

Punishment in “Hell”

Punishment in “Hell”

Fengdu, known as the “Ghost City”, is located on the Yangtze River. It is a collection of Buddhist and Taoist temples set atop a hill known as Ming Mountain that once overlooked the old town of Fengdu. The old town is now submerged by the Three Gorges Dam reservoir. The residents were relocated to a new and larger Fengdu on the south side of the river across from the temples. The town received its reputation as the “Ghost City” during the Eastern Han Dynasty between 25-220 AD. Two officials from the imperial court left politics and came to Ming Mountain to practice Taoist teachings. Their names were Yin and Wang and when their surnames are combined together it sounds very much like “King of Hell” in Chinese. Hence the people began to call Fengdu the “Ghost City”. It is important to note that “King of Hell” in China does not represent a devil or evil spirit. To the Chinese, the social structure in the underworld is exactly like that in the real world. In “hell” the spirits would go through a whole bureaucracy of underworld officials to receive their final judgments. Those pure of spirit would be rewarded and those sinful spirits would be subject to severe punishments. Different types of punishments would be given for different kinds of sins and a display of the punishing instruments and wild demon images vividly depict the Chinese people’s imagination of Hell.

 

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