Tin Hau Temple, Yau Ma Tei

Wonderful Hong Kong always delights - my partner is rather addicted to the place, and spends his days buying clothes while I potter about, going to the movies or visiting temples.

When I am there I visit the gorgeous Tin Hau Temple, almost every day. The temple is a Kowloon institution and a great place to do some people watching. The main temple hall is a mysterious collection of almost unidentifiable deities, but to be on the safe side I always make offerings to all of them.
 The temple appears to be participating in some sort of community service program, because the attendants and cleaners always seem to be heavily muscled and tattooed young men who look like they are on day release. Actually, at the right time of day (and night) the courtyard outside showcases the most wonderful collection of outcasts, addicts, petty criminals and other people of ill-repute. I love to while away an hour or two on a bench there.

Outside the temple is also one of the world's most insane Kwan Yin shrines - a spontaneous collection of donated statues barely kept in order and balancing on an improbable worship cabinet intended for a suburban home.

I love the disorder and fervour of it, and feel its powerful energy each time I pause at it and offer up a prayer or two.


Popular Posts