A professor has visited the abbot of the world-famous Shaolin Temple in northern China and said “everything was as normal” days after the authorities announced they were investigating the affairs of the Buddhist cleric. Professor Shi Pu, who works at Henan University of Economic and Law , went to see Abbot Shi Yongxin on Sunday evening, the Beijing Youth Daily reported. The two posed for a picture that was posted online, showing the abbot sitting, while the professor stands beside him with his palms placed together. The State Administration for Religious Affairs said on Thursday that it had instructed its bureau in northern Henan province to investigate allegations against the abbot, the state-run news agency Xinhua reported. The Buddhist Association of China said the accusations “had affected the image and reputation of Chinese Buddhism”. The allegations, posted online last month by a man who claimed to be a former disciple at the temple, alleged that Yongxin had been kicked out of the Shaolin Temple in the late 1980s, held double identities, had sexual relations with several women and even fathered their children. The temple issued a statement last week denying all the accusations against the abbot, describing them as “groundless, vicious and libellous”. The abbot has given a three-page statement to the police after he filed an official complaint that he has been defamed by his former disciple, the news website reported, citing an unnamed senior monk. The abbot was due to head a delegation to a martial arts exhibition in Thailand over the weekend, but did not go. Yongxin became the abbot of the Shaolin Temple in 1999 and is no stranger to controversy. He frequently makes headlines, with some critics accusing him of turning the temple, known as one of the earliest centres of Zen Buddhism and Chinese martial arts, into a cash cow. He has a master’s degree in business administration and has promoted a strategy of opening Shaolin institutions overseas and investing abroad.