The land of flying phoenix

Update: 10:35 | 10/02/2019

(BGO)- I went to Yen Dung, a countryside in the northern province of Bac Giang which is referred as the land of dragon and phoenix located at the root of Nham Bien Mountain Range to enjoy the special taste of fragrant rice grown from precious silt of Cau and Thuong rivers. This area is deserved to be called “the sacred land with extraordinary people”, a land of legends of flying flocks of phoenixes from the very first days of the establishment of this nation.   

Legend has it that once upon a time, King Hung wanted to move the kingdom to the large delta area for the farm work of his people. He asked his men to follow the flight of 100 phoenixes to seek the land for building the imperial city.

The flock of sacred birds flew across Nham Bien Mountain. They hovered around hundreds of times and saw a lot of holy spirit at the land on Luc Dau river then they perched. 99 phoenixes perched on 99 peaks of mountains but the leading bird could not find the 100th peak in the spectacular Nham Bien Mountain Range.

Bac Giang province, Yen Dung district, land of flying phoenix, dragon and phoenix,  Nham Bien Mountain Range, fragrant rice,  King Hung, imperial city

The fragrant rice growing area at Thang Cuong commune (Yen Dung district).

The 99 other phoenixes followed their leader to fly away to Bach Hac in Viet Tri, Phu Tho province, so this land became the capital city of ancient Van Lang Kingdom. Although Yen Dung could not become the land of the King, this sacred land is home to extraordinary people who seemed to be born from the holy spirit of the sacred rivers and mountains from generation to generation.

In this holy land of Yen Dung, the traditional values and modern achievements have been intertwined. Particularly, the brilliant achievements of current life seemed to reflect the glory of the past. The current values have been inherited from the ancestors such as the woodblocks of Vinh Nghiem pagoda, the historical and cultural heritage recognized by UNESCO as the World Documentary Heritage in Pacific Asia.

Yen Dung is becoming one of the 4 key districts in the economic development of the province with dramatic achievements i.e. the total production value hit nearly 10.2 trillion VND (439.5 million USD) while the growth rate of production value reached 15.72 percent in 2018. The economy of Yen Dung district has been developing based on 4 “pillars” including industry, tourism (cultural, spiritual, eco-resort and sports tourism), hi-tech agriculture and urban development.

Like other localities, the program of building new-style rural areas has been paid due attention in Yen Dung district. Building new-style rural areas is not just fulfilling the criteria on infrastructure but more important is to build the people of the new-style rural area. Renovating rural areas is not only to provide electricity, roads, markets and cultural constructions but the core is to make every local person live a happy life.

To date, only 9 communes of Yen Dung district meet the standards of new-style rural areas while other 2 communes are waiting for appraisal by the provincial people’s committee. Besides, 4 communes have fulfilled from 12 to 14 criteria and the rest 4 communes have met from 10 to 11 criteria. Neo town, a simple name is developing to deserve the position as the heart of Yen Dung, the “the sacred land with extraordinary people”. About 1,000 workers are working for 3 foreign-invested companies including France, Taiwan (China) and the Republic of Korea at this town.

According to Vu Ngoc Hoan, Chairman of the People’s Committee of Neo town, agricultural production accounts for 30 percent in the economic structure while the poverty rate is only 0.3 percent, good news for the local. In line with agricultural production applied high technology, calling for investment in industrial development and labor export, Neo town pays due attention to spiritual tourism with the roads connecting to the tourist sites including Truc Lam Phuong Hoang Zen Monastery, Vua (king) Mountain and Vinh Nghiem pagoda.

Although this land could not become the imperial city as legend has it, it has converged the holy spirit to create a “sacred land with extraordinary people”. As visiting Yen Dung, I likely heard the sound of legendary phoenixes flapping their wings in the air, the cloud and mountains.

The warm sunlight in early winter seems to illuminate the road to Xuan Phu commune, an outstanding example in building new-style rural areas since 2015. As a mountainous and agricultural commune, Xuan Phu has fulfilled land consolidation to establish the larger specialized fields to grow the potato, zucchini and watermelon at the hamlets of Dinh Phu, Nam Phu, Xuan Dong or the concentrated aquaculture area at Xuan Dong, Xuan Trung and Xuan Thuong.

Xuan Phu is really a highlight in the movement of building new-style rural areas with concreted and asphalted roads and colorful beds of flowers beautifying the village roads. Besides, the villagers keep warm and happy neighborhoods.

We visited Truc Lam Phuong Hoang Zen Monastery on a fine day. Viewing from the gate of the Monastery, we saw a picturesque landscape with majestic mountains and hills, the fields in the villages and industrial zones beside the urban areas. Although life has seen many changes, the holy spirit of the land is everlasting. The good values have been carefully preserved and enriched by the descendants in this land.

Personal health records created for Yen Dung’s residents
(BGO) – Implementing the public health record, the Medical Center in Yen Dung district, Bac Giang province has organized the health checkups and profile management for over 80,000 people in the first group (kids under 6 year-olds without attending the kindergarten, the elderly, retired people and free labors) at 21 communes and towns in the district, accounting for 86 percent of the group since May 2018.
Yen Dung works to fully tap tourism, culture potential
(BGO) – Possessing Vinh Nghiem pagoda’s valuable woodblocks, Yen Dung is the only district in Bac Giang province that owns the World Documentary Heritage as part of the Memory of the World Programme. The district also has many relic sites like Vinh Nghiem pagoda, Memorial Site of Uncle Ho in Tan An, Phuong Hoang Zen Monastery and Kem pagoda. In the past years, the district has paid due attention to tapping advantages of the relic sites for tourism development.
Yen Dung develops safe vegetable brand
(BGO) – Meticulous selection of seedlings, strict cultivation process, product labeling and close connection between production and consumption have been put in the first line of the Yen Dung clean vegetables cooperative’s measures to develop the collective brand.
Yen Dung accelerates making dossier of residents’ health record
(BGO) – Recently, the localities in Yen Dung district (Bac Giang province) have focused on propagandizing and checking to list the groups of the subject to organize the medical examination and make the dossier of health record for all residents.

Nguyen Huu Quy

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