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Buddha statue from China gets head reattached in Taiwan

Buddha statue from China gets head reattached in Taiwan

Kaohsiung, May 23 (CNA) A Chinese Buddha statue which lost its head 20 years ago, had its head reattached in Taiwan on Saturday, thanks to an anonymous Taiwanese art collector. In a ceremony held at Fo Guang Shan monastery in Kaohsiung, thousands of Buddhists celebrated the reunion of the body of the 1,600-year-old statue from Hebei Province in northern China, and its head in Taiwan, over a thousand miles away from its Hebei home Youju Temple. Presiding over the ceremony, Master Hsing Yun, the founder of Fo Guang Shan, lauded the reunion of the body and head of the statue in Taiwan and protecting the Chinese historical treasure as a milestone in the cooperation between Taiwan and China. He said it bore witness to the close relationship between the Buddhists in Taiwan and China. According to Fo Guang Shan, the statue of Youju Temple had its head cut off and stolen 20 years ago, and it was never found. Last year, however, the monastery was given the head of a Buddha statue and after painstaking inquiries and verification, it was found to be the head of the statue of Youju Temple. To reunite the statue's head and body, Fo Guang Shan first had to get the Taiwanese donor's consent to return the head to Youju Temple free of charge and then get Chinese authorities to transport the headless statue to Kaohsiung for the reunion ceremony. Hsing Yun said the donor of the head was one of the members of the audience at the ceremony but preferred to have his name withheld, and he described the donor's good deed while staying anonymous as an example of "giving without expecting anything in return." Li Xiaojie, China's deputy culture minister and the president of the China-based Chinese Cultural Heritage Exchange Association, said at the ceremony that the statue was not only a religious and artistic work, but also a testament to a marvelous deed.
He said it will go down in history as evidence of the bright side of Buddhists on both sides of the Taiwan Strait. The reunited statue and head will be on display at Fo Guang Shan until the spring of next year when it will be returned to Yuoju Temple. (By Wang Shu-feng and Maubo Chang)


Updated : 2021-09-25 07:59 GMT+08:00