Impressions of Yangon's Chinatown

Upon arrival in Yangon, the urgent need to get a SIM card and exchange currency was resolved in Chinatown, as recommended by the hotel front desk. The next morning, I did indeed solve these problems in Chinatown, but the businesses I consulted and traded with were not Chinese-owned. Walking around the streets, there are elements of Chinese culture, but not many. Perhaps I didn't go to the right place, or perhaps this is the current state of Yangon's Chinatown. The biggest Chinese cultural landscape I saw was the Qingfu View and Guanyin Ancient Temple. Neither of these were part of the tour guide's itinerary, I requested to go myself. This Qingfu View is very interesting, with several unique features. First, as soon as you enter the gate, the platform of the Emperor of Heaven, with sugarcane on both sides, is too 'flavorful' - using sugarcane as a flagpole, not only saves material, but also looks vibrant, absolutely unique, never seen before. Second, a sign reads 'Heavenly Holy Mother', which should refer to Mazu. Since this view was built by Fujianese in the 19th century and is located by the Yangon River, it is undoubtedly dedicated to Mazu. But strangely, the main niche does not say Mazu, but Guanyin. Third, the right-hand side niche is dedicated to the Emperor of Heaven, with a statue of Guan Gong in front of it? It's already a bit strange not to have a Guan Gong niche. Fourth, the statue of the Laughing Public, I've never heard of the Laughing Public. Of course, it's not strange for any deity to appear in a Taoist temple. Fifth, the Four Heavenly Kings are in front of the door, which is usually guarding the Buddhist temple, and it's rare to see them placed outside like this. The Guanyin Ancient Temple is also a blend of Buddhism and Taoism. In the niches on both sides of Guanyin, there are Taoist deities such as the God of Literature and Wealth, which is not surprising. Finally, what's the deal with this Mixue Bingcheng? Counterfeit? Why is there no little snowman?
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*Created by local travelers and translated by AI.
Posted: Feb 20, 2024
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Yangon Chinatown

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