Wutaishan Buddhist Music

Home Culture 2019-06-29

Wutaishan Buddhist Music

Wutai Mountain Buddhist music refers to the traditional Buddhist music that has been circulating for a long time in the temples of Wutai Mountain, the top four famous mountains of Chinese Buddhism. Wutai Mountain Buddhist music includes both Han Buddhism (called Qingmiao) and Tibetan Buddhism (called Huangmiao). Wutaishan Buddhist music, which began in the Northern Wei Dynasty, has been circulating in Wutaishan area, especially in Qingmiao Buddhist music. It is also circulated in Wuzhai, Zuoquan, Hongdong, Xiangfen, Fanshi, Daixian, Yuanping, Taiyuan and other places in Shanxi Province.

On December 18, 2006, the first batch of provincial intangible cultural heritage lists and the first batch of national intangible cultural heritage lists in Shanxi Province, Fole, Wutaishan.

Historical Evolution

Wutai Mountain Buddhist music refers to the traditional Buddhist music that has been circulating for a long time in the temples of Wutai Mountain, one of the four famous Buddhist mountains in China and a Buddhist resort in Shanxi Province. Five stations

Buddhist music originated from Indian Buddhist music and absorbed the elements of traditional Chinese music, and became the representative of northern Buddhist music.

Wutai Mountain, located in the northeast of Shanxi Province, is a branch of Taihang Mountains. It is named for its five peaks with platforms. It is the first of the four famous mountains of Chinese Buddhism. It is a famous Buddhist holy place both at home and abroad. It is the only Buddhist holy place in China that has both Han Buddhism (Qingmiao) and Tibetan Buddhism (Huangmiao). Buddhist music accompanied Wutai Mountain Buddhism, which began in the Northern Wei Dynasty between 386 and 557, and became an important part of Wutai Mountain Buddhism. "The flute, the pipa, the zither, the snail, the drum, the hubbub, the sleeve, the song, the dust, the support at any time..." This short poem describing the grand occasion of Buddhist music in Wutaishan during the Northern Wei and Northern Qi Dynasties has confirmed the importance and popularity of Buddhist music at that time. Wutai Mountain Buddhist music and Wutai Mountain Buddhism co-exist and co-prosper.

In the Tang Dynasty from 618 to 907, due to the increasingly collectivized and standardized Buddhist rituals, Buddhist music in Wutaishan flourished, forming various forms of singing, such as solo singing, chorus singing, and rotation singing. By the middle of the 14th century, at the turn of Yuan and Ming Dynasty, musical instruments were introduced into Wutai Mountain Buddhism, which greatly enhanced the artistry of Wutai Mountain Buddhist rituals. Chengguan, a monk in Wutai Mountain, is a master of Huayan Jingshu. He has also completed the systematic arrangement of the praise music, that is, the 18-year-old volume of The Grand Buddha's Huayan Sutra: "Ten admirers, the music is praised, the bitterness is lamented..." The Tathagata is sixty voices..." Zan music is the representative of Huayanzong music and Buddhist Zan music in Tang Dynasty. The Stone Sutra Building in front of the Manjushu Hall of the Buddhist Temple was carved in 877. There are eight musical geishas playing with different musical instruments on each side of Xumi seats, which illustrates the development of Buddhist music at that time.

By the Ming Dynasty, which began in the late 14th century, the Buddhist music in Wutaishan had a new development. It further absorbed the opera cards of Tang and Song Dynasties, Yuan Dynasty Opera, folk songs and folk music.

From 1662 to 1722 (the reign of Emperor Kangxi of Qing Dynasty), Huang religion appeared again in the Buddhist music of Wutai Mountain because of the excellent Tibetan Buddhism-Lamaism of the rulers. Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty believed in Buddhist Dharma. He had built temples from six to five platforms. He also stipulated that the annual June Dharma Congress should be held for one month, which was called the Puritatory Dao Chang. By the beginning of the 21st century, a few temples, such as Bodhisattva Top, Nanshan Temple and Shuxiang Temple, still retained this tradition.

(A Collection of Frescoes of Buddhist Music in Wutaishan Temple )

artistic characteristics

Buddhist music in China is divided into two schools: the South and the north. The South Buddhist music is characterized by euphemism and elegance, and the south of the Yangtze River is full of charm. The North Buddhist music is deeply influenced by the ancient Indian music and has the characteristics of simplicity, elegance, solemnity and solemnity. Wutaishan Buddhist music belongs to northern Buddhist music. Although various Buddhist music in Wutai Mountain are different, they all embody the common characteristics of northern religious music, that is, they are more magnificent and different from southern Buddhist music. The performances of Buddhist bands have not only rich national folk music charm, but also distinct Buddhist music characteristics. The musical instruments of Buddhist music in Wutai Mountains are basically the same in Qinghuang temples. They are all composed of percussion instruments and wind instruments.

Buddhist music in Wutai Mountain can be divided into two categories: Qingmiao music (Han Chuan) and Huangmiao music (Tibetan Chuan).

Music of Qingmiao

The music of Dharma in Buddhist temples of Han Dynasty is the music of Qingmiao. Generally, it includes four parts: Yoga Yankou, chanting, blowing and Sanqu. There are 47 pieces of music cards handed down, which are composed of five parts: Yoga Yankou, chanting at Zen Gate, Buddhist Sanqu, three-day and night book, etc.

Qingmiao music emphasizes "entering the law", that is, rules. Elegant style, quiet, elegant melody, far-reaching artistic conception, with far-reaching, empty, light, quiet characteristics. Qingmiao music from Wutai Mountain has an impact in China.

The main musical instruments of Qingmiao are: hand drum Xin, Dangzi, Zhongmuyu, square gong, drum, cymbal, bell, Xingxin, pipe, Sheng, plum and so on. Among them Sheng is the main, Guan Mei helps. The band usually consists of 14 people.

The blowing tune in the music of Qingmiao is pure instrumental music of the Fashiren. The main repertoire includes more than 40 pieces, such as Shangjingtai, Mimoyan, Pu'an Mantra, Birds in the Cloud and Jinlanfang. Some of them come from Buddhist music, some from classical music and some from folk songs.

Huangmiao Music

The music in Lama Temple of Tibetan Buddhism is called Huangmiao music, which generally includes chanting, blowing and ritual music. There are 40 pieces of music cards left, which are mainly composed of three parts: the chanting part, the blowing part and the ritual part.

Under the influence of national culture, Huangmiao music is not very strict, but more folk. The melody is gorgeous, the rhythm is active, the melody is clear, and there are many melodies of feather and business modes. It has not only the mountain wind of the Mongolian and Tibetan plateau, but also the elegant and tranquil charm of Buddhist music. Only in Mt. Wutai multiplied and developed.

The main instruments of Huangmiao are: big drums, Tibetan bell tubes, Sheng, Damuyu, trumpet, Belly, conch, cymbal, suona and sea flute. Among them, pipes are the main ones and Shengmei helps. (Leda, Suona, Conch, Belly, etc. are used to greet the sun in the morning and evening.) The band usually consists of 10 people.

Blowing tunes in Huangmiao music are used for various temple ceremonies and Buddhist activities in Huangmiao. Some of the music comes from temple music such as "Mimoyan", "Shangzi Cuihuanghua", "Six Words True Words". Others come from classical music such as "Ruyi Song", "Four Characters Monthly Higher", and some from folk music.

These two kinds of music not only praise the chanting of scriptures, but also pure instrumental music without scriptures. Regardless of chanting or blowing tunes, from the repertoire, in order to attract audiences and widely preach the doctrine, they have absorbed a lot of Chinese classical music and folk music besides Buddhist tunes with strong national style. Among the Huangmiao music cards, many were introduced from Tibet to the mainland, and most of them were transliterated into Tibetan. But it also absorbs some ancient songs and folk songs of the Han nationality.

The spectrum used in the temples of Qing and Huang is the traditional ruler spectrum, and all transpositions are also the traditional five-degree transposition method. But the music style of Qingmiao is different from that of Huangmiao. Qingmiao music pays attention to rules, but Huangmiao is not strict. The use of the two temples is different. Huangmiao uses the original tone, that is, the regulation. The use of gauge spectrum, that is, modern E-tone. Qingmiao is one key lower than Huangmiao, that is, angular tone, and tenor is equivalent to modern D tone. In addition, Qingmiao is mainly composed of Han music, while Huangmiao inherits many ancient Tibetan songs. Therefore, the style of Qingmiao is characterized by solemnity, elegance and quietness, while the music of Huangmiao is strong and bright, rugged and superfluous.

(Wutaishan Buddhist Music Performance Atlas )


Inheritance Significance

Wutaishan Buddhist music belongs to the northern system, but it is independent of the East and west, and has its own system and elegant melody. It is the product of the combination of music art and religion, a special cultural phenomenon in social development, and an important component of Buddhist culture in Wutai Mountain. It is considered to be the representative of Buddhist music in the north of China. Besides Wutai Mountain, it has a great influence in the whole north of China and the whole country. In Chinese music culture, Wutaishan Buddhist music also occupies an important position. Therefore, it is of great significance to inherit and protect the "Wutai Mountain Buddhist Music".

Historically, the Qingmiao and Huangmiao temples in Wutaishan have their own bands. In addition to the daily chanting and playing of Sutras in the palace, orchestras play in all kinds of congregations. Later, temple music was left to the people, and monks and Lamas were invited to recite sutras and play music for birthday celebrations and funeral ceremonies. However, since it takes several years or even more to train a monk who can play musical instruments and sing sutras, and the monks in the training class are highly mobile, most of the music can not be played completely. Traveling around the world is a way of life that many monks are willing to choose, but inheriting the cultural heritage of Buddhism and music in Mount Wutai for thousands of years requires endurance and perseverance. At the same time, with the reduction of traditional Dharma in Wutai Mountain, the Buddhist music used is also less useful, and some traditional songs are gradually lost.

protective measures

In 1958, 18 monks from Qinghuang Temple and Qinghuang Temple in Wutai Mountain formed a band to play temple music in Taiyuan, the provincial capital, and won the award.

In 1986, in order to solve the problem of inheritance of the repertoire, Nanshan Temple, Shuxiang Temple and Pusading Temple in Wutai Mountains set up Buddhist music training courses respectively, which took on the task of digging, sorting out the materials of Wutai Mountains Buddhist music and teaching Wutai Mountains Buddhist music.

In March 1989, the Wutaishan Buddhist Orchestra first arrived in Hong Kong to perform large-scale Buddhist music, causing a sensation and great repercussions.

The state attaches great importance to the protection of intangible cultural heritage. On May 20, 2006, Wutaishan Buddhist music was approved by the State Council and listed in the first batch of national intangible cultural heritage list.

On November 20, 2003, the Chinese Buddhist Music and Taoist Music Exhibition was performed in Beijing. The Wutaishan Buddhist Orchestra gathered with Beijing Buddhist Orchestra, Jiangsu Gusu Xian Orchestra, Beijing Baiyun Guandao Orchestra, Qinghai Labrang Temple Buddhist Orchestra and Taiwan Foguangshan Fanjiao Praise Orchestra in Zhongshan Concert Hall.

Nanshan Temple holds a land-and-water Congress every year, and is often invited to do various Buddhist activities and Buddhist music performances at home and abroad. When there are large-scale activities in provinces, cities and counties, the government and relevant departments actively recommend them to participate, which creates an excellent opportunity for the Buddhist orchestra to exhibit.

On March 19, 2011, a Buddhist orchestra composed of monks from Nanshan Temple and Shuxiang Temple led by Master Huiguang won applause for its performance at the Shanghai Grand Theatre with the "Three Jin Dynasty - Shanxi Culture and Art Exhibition Month".

(Wutaishan Buddhist Music Inheritance Activities and Character Atlas )


1. Master Huiguang

Master Huiguang was born in 1966. Fanshi County, at the foot of Mount Wutai, one of the five peaks of Mount Wutai, is also known as Wang Huansheng. Near and far, most villagers are devoted to Buddhism and Dharma. The royal family has been doing good deeds for generations, devoting themselves to Buddhism, and every generation has a monk. Parents are also devout Buddhists and have been influenced by Buddhism since childhood.

In youth, in order to alleviate the burden of the family, he went out to work and became a coal worker. Faced with the continuous mine collapse accidents, in many rescues, life and death have been another understanding. For this reason, he resigned resolutely and asked for the consent of his parents. In 1991, Master Huiguang tapped into Nanshan Temple and worshiped Wanfu monk as a teacher. The monk Jingdu of Tayuan Temple taught him the precepts personally. He practiced Buddhist rites and disciplines, and learned the skills of reciting scriptures and playing musical instruments.

On June 11, 2009, Master Huiguang, as the sole representative of Buddhist music from Han Dynasty (Qingmiao) in Wutai Mountain, was designated as the third batch of national intangible cultural heritage protection successors.

2. Zhang Sample Moran

Zhang Sample Moran, born in September 1969 in Xigou Village, Wutai County, commonly known as Liang Linhu, became a monk at the top of Bodhisattva in 1982 and studied Buddhist music at Huangmiao from Rosandan. In the autumn of 1984, Hamur, president of the Buddhist Association of Chengde City, gave Lin Hu a canopy according to the rules of the Yellow Religion, and gave the Biqiu precepts, taking the name of Molan as a statute. Member of Shanxi CPPCC, Standing Committee of Xinzhou CPPCC, Vice-President of Shanxi Buddhist Association and Standing Vice-President of Wutaishan Buddhist Association. In 2009, as the only representative of Buddhist music Tibetan (Huangmiao) music in Wutai Mountain, it was identified as the third batch of national intangible cultural heritage project protection successors.

3. Good Wizard

Yang Jianguo, a good-faith mage, was born in 1958 in Gujiazhuang Village, Xingyuan Township, Fanshi County, Shanxi Province. Since childhood, he liked meditation and Buddha recitation. He was very talented in music. In 1983, he was appointed as a musician by the County Yangko Opera Troupe. In 1986, he became a monk at the Wuming Buddhist College in Sedalarong, Sichuan. In April of the following year, he began to visit Mount Wutai and Myrmo Rock for undercover study. Then he went to Jile Temple. He graduated from the Chinese Buddhist College in 1991. Goodwill Master began to study Buddhist music in Wutai Mountain in 1986. In 1997, for the purpose of promoting Farison and inheriting the ancient Buddhist music cultural heritage, he founded a training course on Buddhist music in Wutai Mountain at Shifo Temple, Fanshi County, Shanxi Province, and served as a lecturer. In 1998, Jile Temple, Daixian County, Shanxi Province, founded the Northern Buddhist Academy in Wutai Mountain, China. In September 2000, the Chinese Wutaishan Buddhist Orchestra was invited to Beijing to attend the Kaiguang Society of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas held by Guanghua Temple. The excellent performance of Buddhist orchestra was praised by both monks and secular people. Professor Tian Qing, a Buddhist music expert and researcher of Music Research Institute of China Academy of Art, highly praised and appreciated the performance of Buddhist music. In 2004, he participated in the Buddhist music activities of the Water and Land Law Society of Guanghua Temple in Beijing for the second time. On October 16, 2000, the delegation was invited to attend the Kaiguang Fair of Buddha and Bodhisattva at Tianning Temple in Guashan, Jiaocheng County. It was appreciated by the vice-president of Shanxi Buddhist Association, the abbot of Xuanzhong Temple, Gentong Da monk and the elders of Zhushan and the good faith of the meeting. In 2001, the delegation was invited to attend the Kaiguang Buddhist activities of 100 Buddhist statues at Bishan Temple in Wutai Mountain. In 2001, he was invited to perform temple Buddhist music and foreign music at Gulin Quan Temple in Ezhou City, Hubei Province. On August 1, 2005, at the invitation of the great monk Miaojiang of Bishan Temple in Wutai Mountain, he attended the Buddhist music performance of the Land and Water Law Society. From 1997 to 2005, Buddhist music classes were held for six sessions. They were distributed in Guangdong, Henan, Zhejiang, Shanxi and other places for Buddhist activities. Goodwill Master compiled music for Tibetan Confessions, and compiled nearly 100 Buddhist songs, 20 Sheng, pipes and flute music scores. He also compiled 1-2 volumes of "Chinese Wutai Mountain Buddhist Music Complete-Song Collection", "Chinese Wutai Mountain Buddhist Music Complete-Two Times Class Recitation Music Complete", "Chinese Wutai Mountain Buddhist Music Complete-Pure Land Buddhist Practice Collection" 1-6 volumes, and "Chinese Wutai Mountain Buddhist Music Complete-Buddhist Music Complete-Pure Land Buddhist Studies Collection-1-6 volumes". Taishan Buddhist Music Complete Buddhist Music Zanju Text Spectrum


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