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The preserved past – the today’s backing position of Dau Tieng Temple

Update: 16-10-2020 | 10:25:05

Joining the festive atmosphere of Dau Tieng Temple flower offerings on the 15th and 16th of lunar August, we had our opportunities to know more about the history of the temple which was approved as provincial historical and cultural remain in September 2009.

Dau Tieng Temple looks from the gate

The hideout of revolutionary officers

Dau Tieng Temple has the other name of Dinh Thanh Thon Temple (an old-time name of the today’s Dau Tieng). The temple is now located at Quarter 3 of Dau Tieng Township in Dau Tieng District and right next to Saigon River bank, which is very favorable for visitors from road to waterway access.

The temple’s god was actually an officer titled by Tu Duc King in 1853 (the 5th year of Tu Duc king). It was identified that the temple was built before the title was being made. Historical data of the temple showed that the temple was constructed at the site 1km away from the current position at the higher flow of Saigon River. Then, the temple was moved to another location and the French colony constructed a water factory nearby the temple. Because the temple was located at the lower flow of Saigon River, it was flooded in 1952. Therefore, local people chose higher ground to move the temple to the current site.

Records of provincial museum showed that the titling and constructing of Dau Tieng Temple was within Dinh Thanh village of Binh Long district, Tay Ninh Palace, Gia Dinh province. In the time of resistance wars against the US Army and French Colony, the temple was at Dinh Thanh village of Binh Thanh Thuong General Residence, Thu Dau Mot province. The temple was located on a high land of old-age trees of great canopies; thus, in wartimes, the temple became hideouts and gathering for revolutionists. Thus, many times, the temple was bombed and badly damaged along with the trees around.

On national liberation, local people contributed their efforts and materials to repair the temple. In 1978, Tran Van Ky (aka Tu Ky), one of the revolutionists who had hid at the temple for revolutionary activities, the then Chairman of Dinh Thanh commune People’s Committee and other veterans and local people contributed to reconstruct the temple. In 1985, 2002, 2006, and 2008, the temple was repaired and beautified as today.

Preservation of the old-time culture features

As many other Vietnamese temples, Dau Tieng Temple was constructed by locals for their cultural and spiritual activities on their very first days getting to the place to clear the land and set up villages. As the country is liberated, the temples are where other activities are organized by various local agencies and unions. Currently, the parallel banners of Chinese letters embossed of cement are still preserved. The inner and outer decorations of the temple expressed the folklores of allocation of 3 main and 3 secondary worshiping chambers.

Dau Tieng Temple held a meaningful and significant role of establishing and developing the old-time Dinh Thanh and today’s Dau Tieng. Through time, the temple is especially positioned in the soul and spiritual lives of local generations. The temple is not only a place of gratitude expression but also a spiritual relaxation of locals after their days of hardship.

For the historical and cultural value of the temple, on September 10, 2009, Binh Duong provincial People’s Committee so as to preserve and promote such value of Dau Tieng Temple decided to consider Dau Tieng Temple as provincial cultural-historical site. In recent years, Dau Tieng Temple has become a tourist site.

Reported by H. Thuan – P. Vu – Translated by Vi Bao

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