• Jeollanam-do

    Dogapsa Temple – 도갑사 (Yeongam, Jeollanam-do)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Dogapsa Temple is located in Yeongam, Jeollanam-do in Wolchulsan National Park. The temple was established in 880 A.D. by Doseon-guksa (827-898 A.D.). Originally, the temple site was home to a temple called Munsusa Temple, which was named after the Bodhisattva of Wisdom, Munsu-bosal. In fact, during a recent excavation that took place in 1999, there were roof tiles that date back to the Baekje Kingdom (18 B.C. to 660 A.D.) that were…

  • Artwork

    Shinjung Taenghwa – The Guardian Mural: 신중 탱화

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Introduction The Shinjung Taenghwa is one of the most popular murals that you’ll find at a Korean Buddhist temple. In English, the Shinjung Taenghwa means “Altar Painting of Guardian Deities,” or the “Guardian Mural” for short. This mural is highly intricate. So what exactly does a Shinjung Taenghwa look like? Where can you find it? And what does it all mean? Shinjung Taenghwa Design The Shinjung Taenghwa is a relatively large sized mural. It…

  • Beomeosa,  Busan

    Cheongryeonam Hermitage – 청련암 (Geumjeong-gu, Busan)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Hermitage History Cheongryeonam Hermitage, which means “Blue Lotus Hermitage” in English, is located on the Beomeosa Temple grounds in Geumjeong-gu, Busan. Of the eleven hermitages on the expansive Beomeosa Temple grounds, Cheongryeonam Hermitage is the closest to the main temple. It’s unknown as to when Cheongryeonam Hermitage was first built; however, records indicated that the hermitage was rebuilt in 1709 by the monk Shinju-daesa. It’s believed that Cheongryeonam Hermitage was rebuilt around the same…

  • Jeollanam-do

    Borimsa Temple – 보림사 (Jangheung, Jeollanam-do)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Borimsa Temple, which means “Treasure Forest Temple” in English, is located in Jangheung, Jeollanam-do. Located just south of Mt. Gajisan (509.9 m), Borimsa Temple was first established in 759 A.D. by the monk Wonpyo-daedeok. At this time, the temple was nothing more than a hermitage, and it was called Gajisansa Temple. Like all great temples in Korea, Borimsa Temple has an interesting creation myth. One day, after returning to the Korean peninsula…

  • Busan

    Seonamsa Temple – 선암사 (Busanjin-gu, Busan)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Seonamsa Temple is located in Busanjin-gu, Busan on Mt. Baekyangsan (642 m). There is some dispute as to when Seonamsa Temple was first built, but it’s estimated to have first been built during Later Silla (668-935 A.D.). According to one legend, Baekyangsa Temple was first established by the famed monk Wonhyo-daesa (617-686 A.D.) in 675 A.D. Originally, the temple was called Gyeongangsa Temple. Before the 15th century, the temple was relocated to…

  • Artwork

    Gamno-do – The Sweet Dew Mural: 감로도

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Introduction One of the more difficult Buddhist murals to find at a Korean Buddhist temple is the Gamno-do, or “Sweet Dew Mural” in English. In fact, I’ve only ever seen this mural at a handful of temples and hermitages in all of my travels. So what is a Gamno-do? What does it look like? And what is it supposed to mean? Gamno-do Design A Gamno-do depicts the Ullambana Sutra. Other names for this type…

  • Gyeongsangnam-do

    Hongryongsa Temple – 홍룡사 (Yangsan, Gyeongsangnam-do)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Hongryongsa Temple, which means “Rainbow Dragon Temple” in English, is located on Mt. Cheonseongsan (920.1 m) in Yangsan, Gyeongsangnam-do. The name of the temple comes from the waterfall, Hongryong-pokpo Waterfall, which is at the centre of the temple and stands fourteen metres in height. According to legend, there was a dragon that once lived inside this waterfall. Afterwards, it rode off on a rainbow up into the sky and disappeared. The temple…

  • Artwork

    Budo – Stupa: 부도

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Introduction When you first enter a Korean temple or hermitage, or even their grounds, you might see a row of strangely designed stone monuments that somewhat resemble headstones. In Korean, these are known as “budo,” or “stupa,” in English. Officially, they are known as “seung-tap,” or a “monk’s pagoda,” in English. So what exactly does a Korean Buddhist stupa look like? What are they for? And what are their symbolic meaning? History In Buddhism,…

  • Jeollabuk-do

    Silsangsa Temple – 실상사 (Namwon, Jeollabuk-do)

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! Temple History Silsangsa Temple, which means “True Nature Temple,” in English, is surprisingly located near farmer’s fields alongside the meandering Mansucheon River in Namwon, Jeollabuk-do. Silsangsa Temple is situated in the centre of a cauldron of mountains that make up the northern part of the famed Mt. Jirisan (1915.4 m). Silsangsa Temple was established by the monk Hongcheok (also known as Jeunggak) in 828 A.D. Hongcheok traveled to Tang Dynasty China with the monk…

  • Artwork

    Biseok – Stele: 비석

    This posts contains affiliate links. I receive a percentage of sales, if you purchase the item after clicking at no expense to you. This will help keep the website running. Thanks, as always, for your support! History and Design A biseok, or stele, in English, is a rectangular piece of stone that stands as a monument for a deceased monk. The tradition of creating biseok started during the Three Kingdoms of Korea (57 B.C. – 668 A.D.). Stylistically, they are typically made up of three parts: the turtle base, dragon cap, and body with writing. The turtle is thought to be the longest living animal, which is meant as a…