Modern China's modern overlays - a curious amalgam of communism, epic traffic jams and Yves Saint Laurent - cannot disguise the nation's compelling spiritual seam. From the esoteric mysteries of Tibetan Buddhism to the palpable magic of its Taoist shrines, China's sacred realm is the point at which the supernatural and natural worlds converge. With their sequence of halls and buildings interspersed with breezy open-air courtyards, Chinese temples are a joy to visit. The roofless courtyards allow the weather to permeate within the temple and permits qi (气) to circulate, dispersing stale air and allowing incense to be burned. They also find themselves deposited in the loveliest corners of China: clinging to cliff sides, capping foggy mountain summits, overlooking scenic river panoramas or littering the epic Silk Road.