|Tzu-ko Shrine is enshrouded in Chung-nan-shan, built in about the early Tang Dynasty, but it was burnt down during the first to the sixth T'ung-ehih years (1862-1867) of the Ch'ing Dynasty because of Moslem uprising. In 1942, in clearing up the site of the ruined Ta-pau-en Temple for the construction of Tao-ho Shrine , the Japanese Army unearthed the skull relics of Hsuan Chuang's cremated body. An examination of the holy relics revealed that a monk called Ko-cheng of Ta-pau-en Temple (later changed to Nanking Chang-kan Temple) had brought them back from Chung-nan-shan; Tzu-ko Shrine. Henceforth, Tzu-ko SIrrine has overspread its name. Tzu-ko Shrine is nestled in the Chung-nan mountain chain, Tzu-ko-shan,which is sublime, towering, and gorgeous. The sacred retreat attracted hosts of high-ranking or learned monks for religious meditation or moral cultivation, including Fa Tsang in the Northern Chou era as well as Tao Hsuan , Chu Chin, Fei Hsi, Hui Chao, etc., during the Tang Dynasty. In addition, many poets saluted the sacred place with laudatory poems, including Li Po, Tu Fu, Wei Ying-Wu, Po Chu-I , Chang Chi, Tao . Ho, Ku Fei-hsiung, Chang Pin, etc.
Up to the opening era of the Sung Dynasty, Tzu-ko Shrine or monastory was little mentioned in the biographical accounts of celebrated monks , but myriads of poets paid tribute to the place, including Lee Tao, Ch'eng Hao, Chang Tun, K'ang Hai, Wang Chiu-kao, Hsiung Tzu-hsiu, Han ch'I-wei, Wang Chiu-feng, Hsueh Ch'ang-chao, Wang Hsin-ching, Chang Sung Chu Shih, Lan Ku, etc.
This paper has explored the Tzu-ko Poetry (since its earlie st beginning), covering all the interrelated historical documents and, therefore, conjuring up a panoramic view of the rising of Tzu-ko Shrine. This study can also shed light on the invaluable Buddhist legacy passed on to us by our supreme mentor-Hsuan Chuang.|