• Busan

    Haeunjeongsa Temple – 해운정사 (Haeundae-gu, Busan)

    Temple History Hyanggok-seonsa (1912-1978), who was the founding monk of Haeunjeongsa Temple, was wandering all over Korea in an attempt to find a perfect place to build a temple. And the reason that Hyanggok-seonsa wanted to build a temple is that he wanted to help rescue people’s souls. Eventually, he arrived in Haeundae, Busan. More specifically, he found the perfect place for a temple at the base of Mt. Jangsan (634 m) to the south and east of the diminutive Mt. Bongdaesan (147.7 m). The reason that Hyanggok-seonsa decided to build Haeungjeongsa Temple where it’s located is that he believed that Mt. Jangsan looked like a seated female lion. And…

  • Ulsan

    Munsusa Temple – 문수사 (Ulju-gun, Ulsan)

    Temple History This Munsusa Temple, which shouldn’t be confused with the dozens of other temples and hermitages with the same name on the Korean peninsula, is located in Ulju-gun, Ulsan on Mt. Munsusan (600.1 m). Originally, this mountain was called Mt. Yeongchuisan and Mt. Cheongnyangsan during the Silla Dynasty (57 B.C. – 935 A.D.) and the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392), but later it was changed to Mt. Munsusan because people believed that Munsu-bosal (The Bodhisattva of Wisdom) lived in this beautiful location. And much like the mountain, Munsusa Temple gets its name from Munsu-bosal. Munsusa Temple is said to have been founded in 646 A.D. by the famed monk Jajang-yulsa (590-658…

  • Ulsan

    Sinbulsa Temple – 신불사 (Ulju-gun, Ulsan)

    Temple Layout Sinbulsa Temple is located in western Ulsan in Ulju-gun to the east of Mt. Yeongchuksan (1082.2 m). In fact, the famed Tongdosa Temple isn’t all that far away to the south, as well. When you first arrive at the temple grounds, after having wandered around the outskirts of the Samsung factory, you’ll first be greeted by a stone sign that says the temple’s name in Korean: 신불사. Down at the fork in the road, head right towards the temple grounds. Straight ahead of you, and to the right, is the temple’s Jong-ru (Bell Pavilion). The Jong-ru houses a rather large Brahma Bell, especially when you consider that the…

  • Busan

    Haegwangsa Temple – 해광사 (Gijang-gun, Busan)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking on an advertising link at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support!  Temple History and Myth Haegwangsa Temple is a seaside temple located in Gijang-gun, Busan. The temple was first built about one hundred years ago by the monk Kim Mokam-sunim. As for the myth surrounding the creation of the temple, originally Kim Mokam-sunim was a farmer. In fact, the land used for the creation of Haegwangsa Temple used to be his farmland. One day after finishing up his work, Kim took…

  • Artwork

    Ggotsalmun – Flower Latticework Door: 꽃살문

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking on an advertising link at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support!  Introduction Throughout Korea, and at the various Buddhist temples and hermitages that dot the Korean peninsula, you’ll find a countless amount of beautiful latticework adorning the entryways to temple shrine halls. This latticework is typically floral or geometric in design. And while these designs are usually rather stunning in appearance, the exact meaning behind them may be less clear. So what does this latticework look like? Where can you find…

  • Busan

    Hongbeopsa Temple – 홍법사 (Geumjeong-gu, Busan)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking on an advertising link at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support!  Temple History Hongbeopsa Temple is located in the very northern part of Busan in Geumjeong-gu to the west of Mt. Cheolmasan (605.3 m). The name of the temple means “Spreading the Word of Buddhism” in English. Hongbeopsa Temple was first built in 2003. Hongbeopsa Temple was converted from farmland into the temple we see today. And this modern temple has a very modern design, which will be made plain by…

  • Gyeongsangnam-do

    Cheonggoksa Temple – 청곡사 (Jinju, Gyeongsangnam-do)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking on an advertising link at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Cheonggoksa Temple is located in Jinju, Gyeongsangnam-do on the southern slopes of Mt. Wolasan (468.9 m). Cheonggoksa Temple was first built in 879 A.D. by the famed monk Doseon-guksa (826-898 A.D.). Doseon-guksa is perhaps best known for his geomancy methods, or “Pungsu-jiri” in Korean. And the location of Cheonggoksa Temple was chosen according to Pungsu-jiri. After watching a blue crane fly from the banks of the Nam River…

  • Jeollabuk-do

    Geumdangsa Temple – 금당사 (Jinan, Jeollabuk-do)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking on an advertising link at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Geumdangsa Temple is located in Jinan, Jeollabuk-do near the entrance of Maisan Provincial Park. In fact, just a little up the paved pathway about six hundred metres past Geumdangsa Temple, you’ll come to the famed Tapsa Temple. Both temples are housed within the park grounds of Maisan Provincial Park. Geumdangsa Temple means “Golden Hall Temple” in English, and it has two differing stories as to when it was…

  • Artwork

    Poroe – The Dragon that Adorns the Top of the Temple Bell: 포뢰

    Introduction One of the most common things that you’ll see at a Korean Buddhist temple outside a pagoda or temple shrine hall is the Brahma Bell, which is a large, decorative bronze bell. The Brahma Bell, which is known as a “Beomjong – 범종” in Korean, is well-crafted and is usually several hundred years old. Typically, the exterior walls of the bell are adorned with various Buddhist figures like Bicheon (Flying Heavenly Deities), Bodhisattvas, and Buddhas. Joining these bell reliefs is a decorative metal hook that holds the bell to the rafter’s of the bell pavilion. The decorative metal hook that crowns the top of the bell is designed like…

  • Jeollanam-do

    Gwaneumsa Temple – 관음사 (Gokseong, Jeollanam-do)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking on an advertising link at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Gwaneumsa Temple in Gokseong, Jeollanam-do, not to be confused with the Gwaneumsa Temple on Jeju-do, is one of the more obscure major temples that you’ll find in Korea. Gwaneumsa Temple is named after the Bodhisattva of Compassion, Gwanseeum-bosal, and it’s located on the western foot of Mt. Seongdeoksan (646.6 m), which is named after a girl related to the origins of the temple (more on that soon). Gwaneumsa…