As one of the important relics of Xishuangbanna, the Jung Zhen Octagonal Pavilion is named after where it is located. The octagonal pavilion, called "Wo Su" in the Dai language, is where the senior Buddhist monks practice sutras, repent, hold meetings, and memorize Buddha scriptures. During its history of almost 300 years, the pavilion acted as the hall of precept when it was built in 1704AD, while now it is a national relic protection unit. With a smart and magnificent shape, the octagonal pavilion is called marvelous in Hinayana Buddhism and is an example of Dai minority architecture in ancient Xishuangbanna.
Constructed from brick and stone, the octagonal pavilion consists of five parts, the base, the body, the eave, the plane, and the roof. The architectural distribution is as follows: a 亚 shaped house (the house has a shape like the Chinese character "亚") 21 meters high and 10 meters in diameter at the bottom, with eight large planes, 31 small planes, 32 corners, and 24 walls that form the pavilion room; the pavilion has four doors to the north, south, east, and west, respectively, which are drawn with minority patterns.
The front gate is shaped in an arch, above which is a niche with a Buddha sculpture. The doors are made from Red Chinese toon trees and are covered with Dai-style sunflowers and playing double dragons. A wooden ladder connects the stone step in front of the gate, where stands a fierce lion sculpture on one side and a holy dragon sculpture on the other side. The roof of the pavilion is made of wood and depicts a multiple-layered architecture in the shape of a cone. The ten-layered pavilion, supported by 12 10-meter-long beams, is covered by tiles in the shape of eaves, just like fish scales. What's more, the beauty of the octagonal is enhanced with the ancient green Bodhi tree located between it and the Jung Zhen Temple. The tree is so large that six or seven people are needed to hold the trunk, around which is unique scenery.
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I updated this article on November 6, 2012
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