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Old August 5th, 2008, 03:11 AM   #1
brisavoine
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European Buddhist temples

Since we have a thread about European mosques, what about a thread about European Buddhist temples? Show us the Buddhist temples in your city, if there are any.

I'll start with Paris. Paris has several Buddhist temples, which is not surprising considering it has the largest Eastern Asian community in Europe. I don't know all the Buddhist temples in Greater Paris, so I'm only showing those I know here (one Cambodian/Laotian, one Tibetan, one Chinese, and one Vietnamese).

The most famous is the Buddhist pagoda in the Bois de Vincennes. It was originally the Pavillion of Cameroon during the International Colonial Exhibition of 1931, but it has been converted into a Buddhist temple. It caters mainly to the South-East Asian community, particularly the Cambodians and the Laotians. It contains the largest statue of Buddha in Europe, measuring 9 meters, and entirely covered with gold leaves.



image hosted on flickr




The back of the temple as seen from the Daumesnil Lake (one of my favorite places in Paris; the lake is much larger than what you can see on the picture):


During a Khmer festival staged by the Cambodian community at the temple:
image hosted on flickr


Next to the Cameroon pavillion turned pagoda is the Tibetan temple of Kagyu-Dzong.



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In the high-rise Chinatown of the 13th arrondissement is a Buddhist temple that caters more specifically to the Chinese community:

image hosted on flickr


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Last but not least, in the southern suburbs the Vietnamese community is building the Khanh-Anh pagoda, the largest Buddhist pagoda in Europe. The tiles come from traditional craftsmen in southern China, the golden statue of Buddha (4 meters high and weighing 5 tonnes, 5 tonnes of bronze that is (!), covered with gold leaves) was made in Thailand. Thai workers are now on site doing roofing and tiling, after much problems obtaining visas from the French government. Finally the Daila Lama will tour the pagoda on August 12 this year, and give his blessing to the building. So as you can see it's very international, even though it will cater especially to the Vietnamese community.

Work is due to completed by 2010.

In May 2007:






In May 2008, Vesak holiday, with South Vietnamese flags:






In June 2008:


In July 2008:






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Old August 5th, 2008, 03:57 AM   #2
PedroGabriel
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really cool. never though paris was so cosmopolitan to include stuff like this.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 04:06 AM   #3
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As the story goes, the first Buddhist temple of in all of Europe, was built in Belgrade.

Various political upheavels at the beginning of 20th century led to mass migrations of people - hundreds of thousands fled Russia during & imeddiately after the October Revolution, with as many as ~100.000 deciding to settle in Yugoslavia.

After leaving their homeland of Kalmykia, close to the shores of Caspian Sea, a small group of Kalmyk people built their new lives in Belgrade.

Pretty soon, in 1929, a new temple was built...



Unfortunately, during the fighting for liberation of Belgrade in 1944, the temple's roof was damaged - later the lower structure was used by the union of socialist workers and in the end, everything was demolished to make way for a two-storey development .

It'd be nice if it was rebuilt
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Old August 5th, 2008, 04:20 AM   #4
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When will we see scientology temples in Europe?
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Old August 5th, 2008, 04:56 AM   #5
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Scientology centres are certainly easier to build then mosques.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 05:08 AM   #6
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Elista, Republic of Kalmykia, Russian Federation.


Geden Sheddup Choikorling Monastery:



Burkhan Bakshin Altan Sume:

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Old August 5th, 2008, 05:57 AM   #7
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Nice!
Kalmykia, Russian Federation is the only indigenous buddhist territory in Europe.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 06:24 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dstary View Post
Nice!
Kalmykia, Russian Federation is the only indigenous buddhist territory in Europe.
Yep, that's right. Almost (there should be another indigenous Buddhist territories in a various parts of surroundings regions like Stavropol Krai and so on).
But most of the Buddhist temples in Kalmykia has been constructed only in last 15 years.
This two from above is 1996 and 2005 respectively.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 10:10 AM   #9
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This is a photo that I took of a Buddhist Stupa in the suburbs of Birmingham, UK. I'm not an expert but it looks like the Thai style to me.

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I'll dig out some other UK temple photos later
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Old August 5th, 2008, 10:46 AM   #10
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London Fo Guang Shan Temple

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Old August 5th, 2008, 12:51 PM   #11
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Buddhapadipa temple in Wimbledon, London, UK.

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Manchester Buddhist centre, combines a temple with book store, cafe, education centre etc. There are similar buddhist centres in other UK cities.

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Japanese style temple near Milton Keynes

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Old August 5th, 2008, 12:53 PM   #12
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"The Republic of Kalmykia is a federal subject of the Russian Federation. The direct romanization of the republic's Russian name is Respublika Kalmykiya, and that of the Kalmyk name is Xal'mg Tanghch. It is remarkable for being the only state of Europe in which the dominant religion is Buddhism. It has also become famous because its current government has made it the chess center of the world."
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Old August 5th, 2008, 12:57 PM   #13
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Amavarati Buddhist temple, near Hemel Hempstead, UK

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Old August 5th, 2008, 04:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonesy55 View Post
This is a photo that I took of a Buddhist Stupa in the suburbs of Birmingham, UK. I'm not an expert but it looks like the Thai style to me.
No, that's Burmese style.
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Originally Posted by Jonesy55 View Post
Buddhapadipa temple in Wimbledon, London, UK.
THAT's Thai style.
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Originally Posted by CrazySerb View Post
As the story goes, the first Buddhist temple of in all of Europe, was built in Belgrade.
Hm, I'm afraid not.

Doing a quick search online, I see the oldest Buddhist temple in Europe (excl. Kalmykia) appears to be the Datsan Gunzechoinei (Дацан Гунзэчойнэй) in Saint Petersbourg, built by the Russian Bouryat community between 1909 and 1915. The temple suffered a lot after 1917. In 1919 it was vandalized by the Red Army. In 1927 public worship in the temple was resumed but for a short time only. In 1935 -1937 lamas were arrested and the Buddhist community ceased to exist. In 1938 the temple buildings were municipalized and then used as youth physical training centre. In 1941 - 1960 the temple housed a radio station, and some laboratories of Zoology Institute later. Apparently they've been restoring it in recent years.

This is in 1915:







And this is today:













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Old August 5th, 2008, 04:36 PM   #15
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In western Europe the oldest Buddhist temple is apparently the Vietnamese pagoda of Fréjus, southern France, which was built there in 1917 for the Vietnamese soldiers fighting for France in WW1 who trained at the Fréjus military camp.

It was greatly enlarged after 1954 when many Vietnamese refugees arrived in France.





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Old August 5th, 2008, 04:38 PM   #16
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Town Varnsdorf, NW of Liberec:
:-P
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Old August 5th, 2008, 04:48 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brisavoine View Post
No, that's Burmese style.

THAT's Thai style.
Yes, that's right, sorry!

I've just found this (Tibetan style?) Buddhist temple near to Lockerbie on the Scottish-English border.

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Old October 18th, 2008, 05:44 PM   #18
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Elista, Kalmykia

http://www.fotokalmykia.ru/
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