Thursday, July 29, 2010

Big Buddha

In another entry for the Hong Kong LEGO contest, Chiukeung built a microscale version of Hong Kong, including the Tian Tan Buddha. This bronze statue, built during the 1990s, stands (well, sits) 34 meters high and weighs 250 metric tons. One of the halls beneath the statue holds a relic of Gautama Buddha, purported to contain some of his cremated remains.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Make a wish!

CREATION K.O. Creation presents the Taipo Lam Tsuen Wishing Trees. Two banyan trees are located outside a temple to the goddess Tin Hau in Lam Tsuen. A supplicant will write their wish on a piece of paper, burn incense, and hang the wish from the branches of one of the trees in hopes of its fulfillment.

This is another entry in the Hong Kong LEGO contest, which has really been a great source for LEGO creations with themes from Eastern faiths.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Now that's a lot of Buddhas

Antony Lau created another entry for the LEGO Hong Kong contest, the Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery. Built in Shat Tin between 1949 and 1957, this Buddhist Temple (not a true monastery), is famed for housing more than 12,000 statues of Buddha, ranging from very small to very large.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wong Tai Sin Temple

The Wong Tai Sin Temple in Hong Kong is a Taoist shrine dedicated to the great immortal Wong. Born in 338, Wong practiced Taoism and became revered as a great man during his life and was later considered a god. It was only around 1900, though, that his influence spread. This temple was built in 1921 and is a popular site in Hong Kong, both for penitents and tourists.

Visitor to the temple offer burning sticks of incense and prayers at the altar to Wong Tai Sin.

One of the traditions practiced at the temple is Kau Cim, a form of an oracle where petitioners ask a question of the gods and then shake a container of bamboo sticks until one falls out. Each stick is numbered, and the number points to a fortune that can be interpreted to answer the question (though often with the help of a temple priest).

Andy Hung's LEGO rendition of the Wong Tai Sin Temple is an entry in a contest featuring various Hong Kong scenes by several AFOLs. Seen via the Brothers-Brick.

Monday, July 19, 2010


Of Mans First Disobedience, and the Fruit
Of that Forbidden Tree, whose mortal tast
Brought Death into the World, and all our woe,
With loss of Eden, till one greater Man
Restore us, and regain the blissful Seat,
Sing Heav'nly Muse.

Thus begins Paradise Lost, the masterpiece of John Milton.

GEEK ASiA rendered a great number of famous figures in LEGO form, including Milton.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Buddha Bracelet

In Buddhism, prayer beads are used as an aid to meditation. The practitioner turns a string of beads in their hand as they repeat a mantra, as a way of counting their repetitions while still being able to focus on the mantra.

Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei created this piece, Buddha Bracelet, as part of Building Asia Brick by Brick, an exhibition of LEGO art and architecture that traveled through China and surrounding locations in 2007 and 2008.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

LEGO blogging

I started a topic on LEGO blogging over on Classic-Castle. I'd like to invite anyone, particularly if you have your own blog, to add your thoughts. If you're not a member of Classic-Castle, it's really easy to sign up, just fill in a few blanks and within a day a friendly site admin :) will approve you.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Shinto Shrine

Around 100,000 Shinto shrines can be found throughout Japan. These structures are built to house kami, or spirits. In some cases these are more personalized deities and in others they are more less defined, like the spirit of the forest, etc. One of the most obvious marks of a shrine is the Torii gate, that marks the entrance into a sacred area.

Andrew Becraft (of the Brothers-Brick) built this tiny shrine as part of a display he will be bringing to the upcoming BrickCon gathering of LEGO builders in Seattle. The theme of this convention is 'Big in Japan', and Andrew wanted to include a series of recognizable sites from around Tokyo.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Let freedom ring

Proclaim liberty throughout all the Land unto all the inhabitants thereof. Leviticus 25:10

That's the inscription on the Liberty Bell, rung in Philadelphia for many public pronouncements, including (at least in tradition - there is some historic question on this) on July 8, 1776, to summon the citizens to a public reading of the Declaration of Independence. This LEGO sculpture sits in the Philadelphia airport.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Fourth of July

The US Constitution, the practical outline of our governmental institutions, is completely secular by design. However, the Declaration of Independence, the philosophical basis for the nation's founding, sets that foundation on the support of an undefined creator God.
...the laws of nature and of nature's God...
...they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights...
...with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence...
Since the Declaration was signed on this date 234 years ago, the interplay between the secular and religious has been a key theme in public and legal life. Arthur Gugick built this great Independence Hall.