CCP-designated “red education base” to worship communist leaders was razed to the ground day after the news appeared, to rid of this oddity and avoid humiliation.
On May 11, the Chinese site of Bitter Winter reported about the “Chairman Mao Buddha Temple” – a place of worship whose owner was unable to get a permit and, thus, came with an idea to turn it into a temple worshiping China’s revolutionary leaders (the news on the English site appeared a few days later). Located in Ruzhou city of the central province of Henan, the temple received numerous visitors, including CCP officials, coming to pay tribute to Chairman Mao and his comrades, kowtowing and burning incense on traditional Chinese holidays.
The spread of information about such oddity abroad must have disturbed the Chinese authorities, so, at around 9 p.m. on May 12, local officials dispatched more than 100 police officers and brought two excavators to demolish all the buildings inside the “Chairman Mao Buddha Temple.” Except for the six-meter-tall statue of Mao Zedong in the courtyard, which was wrapped in colored plastic, all the other statues on the premises were torn down and hauled away. The entrance to the courtyard was sealed off with a mound of dirt and sheets of galvanized iron. To prevent information about the demolition from being exposed, the government specially hired two people to watch over the ruins of the temple.
According to a source who requested anonymity fearing retaliation from the CCP, the order for this forced demolition was given directly by the Henan provincial government. To prevent any leaks, mobile phones of all personnel participating in the temple’s destruction were confiscated that night, and all roads within three kilometers of the site were cordoned off.
According to the source, “Chairman Mao Buddha Temple” was forcibly demolished overnight mainly because of the controversy that communist leaders are being deified and worshiped while the current regime is going all out to crack down on religion. The designated “red education base” had named Mao Zedong “Celestial Deity Buddha,” while other revolutionary leaders were called “Heaven-Piercing Giant Buddha,” “Meridian Giant Buddha,” and alike. Verses, like “Lord Mao is the new Jade Emperor, who controls the heavens, the earth, and the human world;” “Taoism and Buddhism will be attributed to the teachings of Mao Zedong;” and “Communism is to be realized, and red five-star flags to be all over the world” have also been displayed in the temple.
“The Communist Party is atheist. Now, they have turned Mao Zedong into Buddha; this is in total conflict with Marxist doctrine,” the source further explained. “The exposure of this matter is tantamount to the Communist Party slapping itself in the face, so the government gave orders to demolish it quickly. It was done to cover up their embarrassment.”