The Nan Hua Buddhist Temple, which is actually a village, takes up almost an entire suburb. Peace prevails and you could be mistaken for thinking you were in China except the countryside is definitely Highveld. The seminary attracts novices from all over Africa and the varied interns commit to a three-year period of study at the temple. The annual head-shaving ceremony is a symbolic demonstration of the devotees’ willingness to start a new life, promoting love, kindness, tolerance and peace. A visit to the temple is an interesting aesthetic treat. It is the biggest in Africa. The large scale of the front gates, the buildings and the steps to the temple are impressive. On special days like Buddha’s birthday the grounds are festively decorated. The elaborate architecture and large statues of Buddha are reminiscent of those seen in temples overseas and unexpected in the farmlands of Bronkhorstspruit.

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