Guidelines elevate grotto temple studies
Scanning equipment uses a 3D laser scanner to record data on Yungang in Datong, Shanxi Province, on Oct 19. PU FENG / IN CHINA DAILY

The State Council issued a series of guidelines to improve the protection and studies of the cave temples of the nation.

according to the guidelines, all "major threat" to the security of the cave temples must be resolved before 2022, and should take security measures to cover all those sites throughout China by then . The guide, developed in late October, was unveiled on Wednesday.

In the next five years, a dynamic protection system is to be established to ensure close cooperation between the departments of the central and local government, with the active participation of the public.

Grotto temples excavated sites in the mountains or rocks frequently visited by pilgrims and religious-were introduced in China in the ancient Silk Road in the third century. . They became a pillar of Chinese Buddhist art

Prominent examples became the sites of World Heritage of UNESCO between 1987 and 2014, including the Mogao Caves in Dunhuang, Gansu Province; Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang, Henan Province; Datong Yungang Grottoes in Shanxi Province; and some other Buddhist grottoes along the Silk Road in Gansu and Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

President Xi Jinping, after visiting Yungang on May 11, called for the protection of the temples of grottoes to be given priority and urged a better presentation of their cultural legacies that make exchanges between different ethnic groups in order to enrich the sense of a shared community of the Chinese nation.

"Grotto temples are widely distributed in China on a large scale with a complete line of development," the guideline of the State Council said. "Mingle architecture, frescoes, sculptures and calligraphy and fully reflect the aesthetics, values ​​and spirit of the Chinese people."

Emphasis was placed on the preservation of the sites, which touch on the heritage of cultural property, traditions and values ​​of the belt and the initiative Sheet highlighting communication and mutual learning among different civilizations.

"This is the first strategic direction at national level the country for the protection of the cave temples since the founding of New China, and as a manifesto to strengthen the cultural our trust through relics" Lu said Jiwen, deputy director of the Yungang grottoes Research Academy.

"A seeing the caves in depth, will also help people better understand Chinese philosophy and humanities from a historical perspective," he said.

Lu said the aging cave temples are fragile and face geological hazards aggravated by bad weather and unstable rock foundations. This makes consolidation and preservation of an urgent matter said.

The technological advances to handle these issues are still missing, said Liu Yuzhu, director of the National Administration of Cultural Heritage. "The timely guidance responds to the need to overcome bottlenecks in the protection," Liu, who answered questions from journalists through written statements said Friday.

A special national fund will be allocated over the next two years to finance projects for the development of materials and techniques for restoration.

Since 2012, about 1.04 billion yuan ($ 157 million) has been allocated in spending national tax to help the cave temples of protection.

But Liu said that scientific preservation of statues and frescoes in the caves had just begun in earnest, and many medium and small caves have not been adequately preserved despite some key sites being consolidated and regularly maintained.

national research in the state throughout the country's ancient grottoes-defined as those carved before 1911, started in September and will continue until June, Liu said. Work is used to compile a national directory of grottoes and prepare a list of renovations to the measure.

A regular assessment system is also planned to establish a national Databa

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