As part of the program for the protection of cultural heritage, a database of Mongolian monasteries and temples that existed before the mass political repression of the 1930s is currently being created. Historical documents and books testify that during the repressions about 700 monasteries from 900 operating were destroyed in the territory of Mongolia. In the process of compiling a database, these indicators are refined. The total number of monasteries and temples that existed before the repressions in Mongolia is 1015. The changes were made according to documents stored in the archives of the Main Intelligence Directorate and the National Archives. Destroying monasteries and temples, they were registered, their drawings photos were made. The results of studies of ruins located on the territory of aimaks also helped to update.

At the beginning of the 19th century, about fifty thousand people in Ulan Bator visited about 100 Buddhist temples and monasteries, most of which were destroyed during repression in the late 1930s. Currently, temples and monasteries are gradually being restored.

  1. Monastery Gandantegchenlin in Ulan Bator

In the heart of the capital of Mongolia - Ulan Bator - there is a Buddhist monastery Gandan, which is a whole complex of buildings of different ages. It includes several temples, suburgans, prayer pagodas, a library, and a Buddhist university. The full name of the monastery is Gandantegchenlin or Gandan Tagchinlin Khiid, which means “Big chariot of all-embracing joy” in Mongolian.

Surrounded by residential areas with their low houses and yurts, Gandan makes a charming impression with its walls, beautifully decorated carvings and patterns, and the roof, tiled in different colors. The entrance is guarded by fierce sculptures of gods, and in the courtyard there is a statue of the Buddha himself.

The history of the Gandan Monastery begins in 1809, when a special school for the study of higher Buddhist dogma separated from the Bogd Gegenov Monastery. The school was given the name Gandan, in honor of Gaden, a Tibetan Buddhist monastery. The first wooden structure of Gandan, topped with a golden roof, was erected in 1835 by order of the First Hierarch of Mongolian Buddhists, Bogd Gegen V. A few years later, the monastery acquired the first stone building.

Gradually, the territory of Gandan grew to such an extent that by the end of the 19th century about 14 thousand monks-lamas lived here. At the end of 30 years monasteries were closed everywhere in the 20th century in Mongolia, and Gandan, which was reopened in 1944 and became the only officially functioning Buddhist monastery in socialist Mongolia, was no exception.

Address: Gandan hill

  1. Temple of Maggid-Janraiseg in Ulan Bator

The magnificent white temple of Magjid-Janraiseg is the last Buddhist structure in Mongolia and a magnificent architectural decoration of the city. Towering at 42 m, the temple is the tallest structure in the history of folk architecture. For the believers, Magjid Janrayseg is the temple of worshiping Yanraisig (Megjid Janraisig), in Tibetan Chenresig, the god of compassion, a symbol of independence for the Mongols. Inside it is placed the highest golden statue of Buddha.

Its powerful, whitewashed, trapezoid-shaped building with loopholed windows, with large golden ornamental plaques, noblely standing out on a brown cornice, with a light roof tent, which is crowned, as it should be, a gilded gangier, is remembered as a symbol of the old Ulan Bator.

Address: Gandan hill

  1. Datsan Dechengalpa (Kalachakra Temple) in Ulan Bator

Kalachakra (Skt. Letters "Wheel of time": kala - time, chakra - wheel, circle) - the name of one of the five systems included in the Anuttara yoga tantra.

Originally, the temple was located in the center of Ulan Bator. This datsan was restored in Gandan Monastery in 1992. In the center of the temple there is a portrait of Bogd Khan. The construction of this Datsan began in 1800 after the fourth Jabzun Damba-Khutuhta (Bogda Khan) visited the Tibetan monastery of Baruun Zuua Kalachakra and received an initiation into the Kalachakra Tantra performed by Lhoh Jalsrey Djeguin. Lubsan Tubden Vanchug (the fourth Bogdo Khan) opened the Datsan in 1801, and it functioned until its closure in 1937.

When His Holiness the Dalai Lama performed the Kalachakra rite in Varanasi in India in 1990, he announced that the next Kalachakra ordination would take place in Mongolia at Gandantechenling Monastery. The Mongols immediately began the preparation and reconstruction of the Datsan Dechen Galby. From this time on, a Buddhist ritual of Kalachakra initiation takes place in Datsan every spring.

Address: Gandan hill

  1. Temple of Vazhrakhara in Ulan Bator

This is the first stone church of the Gandan monastery. The main altar in this temple is the statue of Tara Vazdra, created by the great Zanazabar in 1683. Inside this temple it is prohibited to take photographs. A daily service is held in the temple.

Vajrasattva (Skt. - literally “diamond being”, or “having the essence of vajra”) - one of the Buddhas in Vajrayana mythology, the personification of the principle of purification; it is considered the first and main Adibudd's emanation. It is also the personification of all 5 Dhyani Buddhas combined. Vajrasattva is usually depicted in the traditional posture of the Buddhas, with the vajra in the right hand and the bell in the left.

Address: Gandan hill

  1. Dedanprovran temple in Ulaanbaatar

This temple was built in early 1900 of ground and brick. In 1904, the 13th Dalai Lama (Thubdan Jamtsho, 1876-1933) lived in this temple for two years during the invasion of the English into Tibet. Among his teachers, the 13th Dalai Lama called the Buryat Agvan Dorzhiev. While in Mongolia, the 13th Dalai Lama met F. I. Scherbatsky and the Russian geographer and traveler P. K. Kozlov, showed interest in Russia and the prospects for political and economic contacts with it, received the Russian Embassy in Lhasa with A. Dorzhiev, rendered material and moral assistance to the construction of the Buddhist temple in Petrograd.

Address: Gandan hill

  1. The temple museum of Choigin-Lamyn Sume in Ulan Bator

The monastery was built between 1904 and 1908 in honor of the state oracle Luvsanhaydav, brother of the eighth Bogd Khan, and is one of the best monuments of Mongolian architecture of the beginning of the twentieth century. This museum is a complex in which the priceless and unique heritage of history, culture, religion and architecture of Mongolia is preserved.

The temple was built by Mongolian craftsmen and builders under the guidance of the famous architect of the capital of Mongolia - Urgo of the time Ombo. In 1906, Luvsanhaydav sent a letter to the Emperor Guangxu, accompanied by gifts, in which he assured him that they would pray in the new church for its longevity and for the strength of imperial power, and also requested the official name for the temple; as a result, the temple was named the “Church of the Spreading of Mercy” (Mong. Өrshuliyg khgzhulelegch sm). In 1908, the construction of the temple complex was completed. Bogdo Gegen gave it the name "Palace, suppressing all kinds of black demons and creating great unshakable bliss."

The emperor of Manchuria did not give permission for the construction of this temple, since it was intended for religious ceremonies and worship in defense of the Mongolian state, but Choyzhin-lama Luv-sanhaydav managed to persuade him. Services and religious ceremonies were held in this temple, consisting of 5 separate monasteries and 55 rooms, until 1938.

In 1938 the monastery was closed and probably would have been destroyed, but in 1942 it was decided to create a museum in the buildings of the temple in order to demonstrate the 'feudal' ways of the past. The museum was first called "Anti-Religious", then calmer - "Museum of the History of Religion."

The museum contains precious examples of Buddhist art, including paintings by Zanabazar, a famous 17th century religious reformer. You can also see colorful masks for the Tsam dance ceremony embroidered with corals, a bronze statue of gods and many other exhibits.

Address: Genden Street

  1. Batuvlin Monastery in Ulaanbaatar

Betuvlin (Mong. Batuvlin, Batuvdanzhaychoynornlin) is a Buddhist monastery belonging to the Gelug tradition. It is located in the capital of Mongolia, Ulan Bator, in the Chingeltei area. The Batuvlinbyl Monastery was founded in 1999 by Lama Bakula Rinpoche, the former Indian ambassador to Mongolia, who oversaw the restoration of Buddhism in Mongolia after democratic transformations. After his death, his disciple, Lama G. Purevbat, placed his relics in a 2.5 m high stupa made of 110 kg of silver, which is currently located in the monastery.

  1. Dashchoylin Monastery in Ulan Bator

The monastery Dashchoyulin originates from one of the two largest monastic complexes of the old Urga - Gandantegchenlin and East Khure, and is built on the place where there were two temples belonging to the latter - Erhem and Wangai. In 1737, after ten years, the third son of dzasak-noyon Tushatu Khan aimag Zembaldorzh Rampildorzh inherited the title of father, due to illness he left and became a monk under the name of Danzarrimpil. Due to the fact that he founded the temple with the constant administration of services, in which he placed all the relics he inherited from his ancestors, Bogd Gegen II bestowed upon him the title Erham-Toyn (“Hon. Monk”), and this temple became known for this title. The main Yidam of Vajravarahi, the main Dharmapala is the Zambashadag. At the beginning of the last century there were over 400 llamas in the temple. In 1740, Dzasak Tushatu Khan aimag Sunzaydorzh founded a temple in Ikh-Khure, which in 1757 presented Bogd Gegenu II. A monastic aimak (monastic dormitory) was assigned to it, which was originally founded by a person with the title of Junwan. This aimak became known as the Van-Guai aimak, and this naming eventually became “Wangai”. The main yidam of the temple was Vajrapani, the dharmapala guardian was the six-armed Mahakala; the aimag at the temple numbered up to 400 people. The buildings of these temples, like all other buildings of Eastern Khure, were destroyed during the repression of the 1930s.

The modern monastery Dashchoylin, also called Dzun-khure (Eastern Khure), today is the second largest in the capital of Mongolia and includes three temples - the cathedral (former Wangai), the temple Dharmapal (former Erkham-Toyna-Aymag) and the temple Gandanchoinhorlin (founded in 2000), as well as an elementary Buddhist school and library. After the democratic transformations in the country, three concrete yurts, originally built for the structures of the State Circus on the site of the old monastery, were given under the monastery.

Address: N.Sodnomyn Gudamzh

  1. Dechinravzhalin Monastery (Mong. Dechinravzhalin) in Ulan Bator

Dechinravzhalin (Mong. Dechinravzhalin) is a Buddhist temple belonging to the Gelug tradition. It is located in the capital of Mongolia, Ulan Bator, in the Bayanzurkh area.

Dachinravzhalin Monastery was founded in 2003 by a lama from the aimag Zavhan M. Huretsand, who later became his prior. It is located in the Bayanzurkh area near the Narantuul market, on the site of an old temple that was destroyed during the years of repression, and is a two-story brick building surrounded by a fence and yurts. The temple holds daily, monthly and annual hurals. Under Dechinravjalain, an astrologer and a shop of religious goods operate.

Address: 14th Horon, Narn Highway

  1.  Dulmalin (also Dary Ehijn, Dolmaling) in Ulaanbaatar

Dulmalin is a female Buddhist monastery in Ulaanbaatar, associated with FPMT and belonging to the Gelug school.

Initially, the monastery was built near Urga as a gift from the Manchu emperor. In the 1930s, during the repression was almost completely destroyed. Since the beginning of the 1990s, the lama from Gandantegchenlina O. Sodny, together with his student Badamkhand, began work on the restoration of the monastery and in 2001 transferred him to the care of the international Foundation for the Support of the Mahayana Tradition. 16 young nuns settled in the monastery, two nuns of theirs, Sir Je, were invited as mentors. Sopa Rinpoche came to Dulmalin several times; in 2004, the construction of the stupa, which was consecrated by Choden Rinpoche, was completed.

Currently, about 10 nuns live in Dulmalin; Initial Buddhist studies are conducted, after which young Mongolians continue their education in Kopan.

Address: 12 Horon, Janjin Street

  1.  Urzhinshadduvlin in Ulaanbaatar

Urzhinshadduvlin is a Buddhist temple belonging to the Nyingma tradition and dedicated to Dogshin-noyon-hutuhte V Danzanravdzhe. It is located in the capital of Mongolia, Ulan Bator, in the Bayanzurkh area.

Urzhinshadduvlin was founded in Ulaanbaatar on the site of the temple, which stood here before the period of repression, in 2000 at the initiative of Lama O. Tagarva by his two students. Beginning from November 26, 2000, in the temple under the leadership of Lopon Lama M. Purevsuren, unzad-lama T. Odbayar, gebkuya Nasanbuyan, the departure of services began. Currently, 32 llamas in the temple maintain a cycle of services corresponding to the Nyingma tradition, with particular attention being paid to the practice of chod. Beginning in September 2008, a charitable foundation has been operating at the church to help the poor, the elderly, and the handicapped.

Address: 16th Horon

  1.  Orthodox Holy Trinity Parish in Ulaanbaatar

The Trinity Church is the only Orthodox church in Ulan Bator, the capital of Mongolia; located in the Bayanzurkh area (Zhukova Street, 55-a). The current pseudo-Russian building was erected in 2009.

In 1860, as a result of the signing of the Beijing Treaty, the Russian side was granted the right to open a consulate in the capital of Outer Mongolia - Urga.

In 1863, consulate staff arrived in Urga with an escort of 20 Cossacks; they built the consulate building, as well as the Orthodox Church directly adjacent to it in honor of the Holy Trinity, in which on March 22, 1864, the Trans-Baikal priest John Nikolsky performed the first service, which is considered the birthday of the Trinity Parish.

Since 1996, priests of the Russian Orthodox Church began to arrive in Ulan Bator. The reviving Orthodox community of Ulan Bator was served by the Chita Diocese. On January 19, 1998, Archpriest Anatoly Fesechko, the newly appointed superior of the Holy Trinity Parish, arrived in Ulan Bator; on the eve of his arrival on December 29, 1997, the Russian company Vneshintorg transferred the building on the territory of its sales office, located opposite the old church, to the Russian Orthodox Church.

On July 8, 2001, Metropolitan Kirill (Gundyaev) consecrated the foundation stone of the new Temple in honor of the Holy Trinity.

Address: Zhukov Street, 55-a

  1.  Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul in Ulan Bator

The Cathedral of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul is the Catholic Church, located near Bayanzurh. The Cathedral of the Apostolic Prefecture of Ulan Bator.

In 1996, the Philippine missionary from the monastic congregation of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Venceslao Selga Padilla built in Ulaanbaatar the first in the history of Mongolia Catholic Church of Saints Peter and Paul, which on May 27 of the same year on the Day of the Descent of the Holy Spirit was consecrated by the Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop of Bulaitis.

The construction of the modern Cathedral of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul in Ulaanbaatar on the site of the previous church of the same name began shortly after the Pope in 2002 established the Apostolic Prefecture of Ulan Bator (previously called the Apostolic Prefecture of Urgi, founded in 1922). The church was built by the architect Serbian Predak Stupar. The architectural structure of the temple resembles a traditional Mongolian round dwelling yurt. In 2005, on a dome resembling the round top of a yurt, 36 semicircular stained glass windows were added to the design of a brother from the Taizé community. He also, in collaboration with South Korean artist Cho, decorated the temple with four stained glass windows depicting a snow leopard, an eagle, an angel and a yak, which, he said, symbolize the four Evangelists.

The church accommodates about 500 people. The building has three wings that house various administrative and charitable organizations of the Apostolic Prefecture of Ulan Bator. Currently, there are administrative premises in the west wing, a library and a charity pharmacy are located in the east wing, and a kindergarten and a rehabilitation center are located in the south wing.

Address: Bayanzurkh district

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