The Temple of Heaven is situated 2km southeast of the Forbidden City.
This is a beautiful place to visit with wonderful buildings and parklands.
The Temple of Heaven was constructed in the 15th century around the time the Forbidden City was built. At the centre of the complex is a 3 tier circular building where the Emperor would pray for good harvests.
The roof of the buildings are covered with black, yellow or green colored glazed tiles that represent the heavens, the earth and everything on earth, and golden yellow symbolizing the Emperor and green Buddhism.
The Temple is a United Nations world heritage site. It is set in one of the largest parks in Beijing. The parklands and the Temple are a lovely place to spend some time, especially in the early morning.
The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests is completely wooden and built with no nails. The hall is constructed with 28 pillars, each made from a single tree trunk. The 4 pillars around the inner circle represent the 4 seasons. The 12 posts around the middle circle represent the 12 months. The 12 outer pillars represent 12 ShiChen or 2 hour periods which divide a day.
The white and blue-green snake sisters in the Legend of Madam White Snake are among my favourite Beijing Opera roles. The story is about two snake demons; Madam White Snake [ Bai SuZhen ] and her confidant Blue-Green Snake [ Xiao Qingwho ] who strive to become Goddesses by taking human form and do good deeds.
Me in the role of the Lady White Snake Bai SuZhen
They constantly battle a sorcerer called FaHai who wishes to destroy all demons. Bai SuZhen meets a young scholar [ Xu Xian ] and they fall in love. He is unaware that she is really a white snake and they marry. However the unnatural marriage brings disaster to their village and when Bai SuZhen’s origins are revealed she is imprisoned forever in a deep well under a pagoda. It is a lovely story full of action, romance and great characters.