Hong Kong is a World City of 7 million people. It has flourished because of many reasons and one is that it is truly cosmopolitan. You will find a harmonious coexistence of different races, religions, believes and faiths in the crowded metropolis where 70% of its people profess to believe in one faith or another. To discover this side of Hong Kong one has to embark on a “pilgrimage”. It would not be an arduous one like visiting religious holy places. It is a journey to feel and reflect about spirituality through an experience of diversity and tolerance. A “pilgrimage” that can be taken with ease and is within easy reach.

Hong Kong Urban Pilgrimage is divided into two parts. The first part was included in the Tin Hau/Tai Hang Guide (published in the 14 February issue of HK Dollarsaver). You are to find six places of religious worship, one religious institute, one Indian spiritual centre and one totem of local secular faith. To make Part One complete, there are two more places to go.

After the stop at Christ the King Chapel, walk to the end of Cotton  Path and turn left at Caroline Hill Rd. The Confucius Hall was built in 1935 by Kong Sing Tong, an organization established in 1928 with the purpose of propagating Confucius teachings. The auditorium has been a venue for holding cultural events and can accommodate an audience of over 1,000 people.

Walking down the slope to the end will reach Leighton Rd. The Zoroastrian Building is directly opposite at No. 101. It replaced the Zoroastrian Chapel that was torn down in 1991. The modern commercial building still houses a place of worship and the office of “The Incorporated Zoroastrian Charity Funds of Hong Kong, Canton and Macao”.

Zoroastrianism is an ancient Persian religion with a history of over 3,000 years. The rise of Islam after the 7th century drove many believers to other parts of the world. Those who settled in Bombay (Mumbai), India are called Parsee and some came to Hong Kong in the 19th century. Being both astute merchants and charitable at heart because of their religion, they have made great contributions to the society of Hong Kong. There are streets and hospital bearing names of prominent Parsee figures like Mody, Kotewall, Bisney and Ruttonjee. For those who wish to learn more about the religion, their priest (Ervad) Homyo can be reached at 2882 3227.

The first part of the "pilgrimage" ends in Causeway Bay, where glass and steel high rises, fine food dining venues and large brand name signs compete for your attention. Welcome back to the “real” World City.

Faravahar is the symbol of Zoroastrianism. The human figure, or the soul, stands in the circle of wisdom and points one hand upward to connect with the higher power. The other hand holds the ring of faithfulness. The three main rows of feathers are representative of the basic ethics of the religion – good thoughts, good words and good deeds. The three rows of tail feathers represent the opposite – bad thoughts, bad words and bad deeds. The two streamers represent the spirits of good and evil, of which every person in their life has to strive to choose the former.

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