Thean Hou Temple, Kuala Lumpur

When E came to visit, I took him to Thean Hou Temple along Jalan Bellamy in KL. I was worried I’d miss the road because it’s up a hill, but thanks to Waze we made it there just fine.  天后宫 or Thean Hou Goong is a sprawling Chinese temple overlooking the city, dedicated to the Goddess Thean Hou or the Heavenly Mother. Built in the 1980s for a cost of over RM7mil, it is a popular tourist attraction today and is managed by the local Hainanese association. Just outside are figurines of the 12 Chinese zodiac animals.

Like a lot of Chinese temples in Malaysia, Thean Hou Temple has a mix of influences from Buddhism, Confucianism and Taoism. The tiled roofs are orange and red, with intricate dragon and phoenix motifs adorning the pillars and edges. During Chinese New Year, the entire courtyard will be covered with a sea of red lanterns. A thick smell of incense and smoke hung around the air as devotees burned offerings to the gods.

Prayer lights, forming several tall pillars in the prayer hall.

Thean Hou Mo, the Heavenly Mother.She is flanked by two other deities, the Goddess of Mercy (Kwan Yin) and The Waterfront Goddess (Swei Mei).

We donated a small sum and lit some joss sticks as offerings. We also had our fortune told 😛 You know in Hong Kong movies where they predict your fortune by shaking a wooden container until one of the long wooden sticks with numbers fall out? Those are called ‘cheem’ in Cantonese, and a fortuneteller would usually forecast your love, prosperity and health for you. These days, it’s just a rotating device where you bunch the cheem together and wait til one sticks out, then take a ready made ‘fortune’ paper based on the number. Kind of like fortune cookies meets traditional fortune telling.

Next to the main temple is a small courtyard with a statue of the Goddess of Mercy.

We then went to the foodcourt/souvenir centre downstairs where E got overpriced amulets and other stuff to bring back lol.

Til next post!

 

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Author: Luna

Bibliophile/foodie. Drop me a line at erisgoesto@gmail.com

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