The Lingyin Temple, also known as the Lingyin Monastery, in English Temple of the Soul’s Retreat, is a zen-Buddhist monastery northwest of Hangzhou. It is also known as the Temple of the Seelenzuflucht, the Temple of the Hidden Immortals or the Temple of the Miraculous World. It is one of the largest and most prosperous monasteries in China.
The monastery is located in a long narrow valley at the foot of the 168 m high Feilai Feng about four kilometers west of the West Lake between the North Summit and the mountain Beigao Feng in the middle of the Feilai Park. A little further, the Yongfu Monastery is idyllically situated on the mountain.
The monastery was founded in 328, during the period of the Eastern Jin Dynasty by monk Huili, one of the first Buddhist missionaries from India. Within the monastery, five large halls determine the image of the monastery complex. Especially the hall of the 500 Arhats is worth mentioning. Here are 500 life-size Arhat statues, all of which are different.