Xinhua: (Hello Africa) First Shaolin Temple opens in Zambia

Publish Date:2023-01-13

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by Elias Shilangwa

LUSAKA, Dec. 24 (Xinhua) -- In an attempt to inculcate Chinese Kungfu and culture among the Zambian citizens, the first-ever Shaolin Temple has been opened in Lusaka, the Zambian capital.

The establishment of the Shaolin Temple is a collaboration between China's Songshan Shaolin Temple and Hua'an (Zambia), a Chinese-run company in Zambia.

Yan Lun, the headmaster of the temple, said the objectives of the project include teaching Shaolin Kungfu, Chinese culture, helping understand the African culture as well as enhancing the China-Africa friendship.


Photo taken on Dec. 22, 2021 shows a view of Shaolin Temple in Zambia, Lusaka, capital of Zambia. (Photo by Martin Mbangweta/Xinhua)

"The influence of Chinese culture in the world is increasing. People abroad want to know more about Chinese culture and learn Chinese culture," he told Xinhua.

Construction works of the temple started in April 2019 and were completed in July 2021. Four monks from the Songshan Shaolin Temple in China are at the Temple to conduct the teachings.

The headmaster, however, said activities at the temple have not yet commenced at full throttle due to the COVID-19 pandemic but expressed happiness at the interest shown by people who have been frequenting the temple.

The project was targeting not only Chinese nationals in Zambia but nationalities from all countries, especially the local people.


Exterior shot of Shaolin Temple in Zambia, situated in Ngwerere of Lusaka, Zambia's capital, on Dec. 22, 2021. (Xinhua/Martin Mbangweta)

Other activities to be conducted at the temple include Shaolin medical education in which people will be taught the theories and methods of traditional Chinese medicine, Shaolin Kungfu exercises.

Others include Zen education meant to help improve people's moral quality through meditation methods to help cultivate a culture of responsibility to the country, to be self-disciplined and be patriotic citizens.

The temple also intends to help the vulnerable in society through various means. Currently, three orphaned children are being kept at the temple.


Photo taken on Dec. 22, 2021 shows a view of Shaolin Temple in Zambia, Lusaka, capital of Zambia. (Photo by Martin Mbangweta/Xinhua)

Max, the only African monk at the temple whose Chinese name is Yan Ming, said it is important for African people to learn the cultures of other countries in order to blend into the global system.

Max, who is from Cote d'Ivoire, said due to his interest in culture while at the university, he decided to go to China in 2015 in order to learn the Chinese culture.

He said learning the Chinese culture has opened to him many things and that the time spent at the Shaolin Temple taught him the importance of self-discipline and respect for mankind.

"We are here to impart to the Zambian people Chinese culture and we hope this will help to build China-Africa relations," he said.  (Video reporter: Martin Mbangweta) ■


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