Tay Ninh, in the Northwest of Saigon, is the Holy city of Caodaism, probably Vietnam’s most curious indigenous religion. Caodaism, founded in 1926 by Ngo Minh Chieu, is an attempt at an ideal religion, using religious and philosophical traditions from the West and the east, including Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Hinduism, native Vietnamese spiritism, Christianity and Islam.
The eclectism of the religion is reflected in the Great Temple. Built between 1933 and 1955, it combines architectural elements of a church, a pagoda in a extravagant rocco style.
The ceremony at the Great Cao Da temple has a visually beautiful ritual, with the ordinary clergy in white robes and only the high priest wearing color. Traditional music is sung and played as well.