Hanoi, Viet Nam
This picture was taken of Tran Quoc pagoda, located on a small island near the southeastern shore of Hanoi’s West Lake. This temple dates back to the sixth century, making it one of the oldest in the city. The main tower consists of eleven octagonal floors representing the various stages of of Buddha’s life. On the grounds of Tran Quoc, you’ll find a bodhi tree, supposedly grown from the cutting taken from the original tree where Buddha sat and achieved enlightenment.
Standing on the shore, you can see the pagoda clearly reflected on the surface of West Lake. Even though it’s in the middle of a noisy bustling city, there is a sense of calm and tranquility when you step onto the island. People speak in hushed tones in deference to the religious silence observed throughout the temple. Like many people over the years, we had gone there to pray and pay homage to Buddha when we visited Vietnam a few years ago.
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