Chinese photographer, Zhang Wang, has been taking photos of the Buddhist way of life since 1999. While creating his works, Zhang stayed at a temple for years, and lived with the monks.
Lingyin Temple in Hangzhou made an exception for Zhang by allowing him to have contact with the temple monks, and specially assigned a young novice as his assistant.
At 4 o’clock every morning, Zhang Wang got up like the monks, and followed them around, taking photos. At night, he read the Buddhist scriptures, or had conversations with the monks.
In Lingyin Temple, there are more than 150 monks. Many of them are highly educated; some graduated from top universities in China, and some have even returned from studying overseas. Talking with these monks helped the photographer get a deeper understanding of Buddhism.
For three years at Lingyin Temple, Zhang Wang has witnessed the monks meditating, offering salvation, or reaching Parinirvana. And they have all appeared in his lens.