• Gyeongsangnam-do

    Ilbungsa Temple – 일붕사 (Uiryeong, Gyeongsangnam-do)

    Temple History Ilbungsa Temple is located in the rural and remote Uiryeong, Gyeongsangnam-do. And just to the south-west, you’ll find Mt. Seonamsan (528 m). For a Korean Buddhist temple, Ilbungsa Temple is uniquely situated next to the Yugok-cheon River in front of a sheer rock cliff wall. In 727 A.D., the monk Hyecho returned to the Silla Kingdom (57 B.C. – 935 A.D.) from a Buddhist pilgrimage to both China and India. During his travels, Hyecho had a dream in which Jijang-bosal (The Bodhisattva of the Afterlife) appeared. Jijang-bosal appeared in the Buddhist monk’s dream, while smiling peacefully on a cliff surrounded by rocks of fantastic shapes and sizes. In…

  • Busan

    Anjeoksa Temple – 안적사 (Gijang-gun, Busan)

    Temple History Anjeoksa Temple was founded by Wonhyo-daesa (617-686 A.D.) in the first year of King Munmu of Silla’s reign in 661 A.D. to the west of Mt. Gamdimsan (308.4 m) in Gijang-gun, Busan. There is no early documented history about Anjeoksa Temple besides who founded it. With that being said, there is writing indicating that the temple was once named Unbongsa Temple. Also, there is architectural evidence at Anjeoksa Temple of a stone pagoda, roof tiles, earthenware, and more on the grounds, which points to the fact that Anjeoksa Temple existed at the end of the Silla Dynasty (57 B.C. – 935 A.D.) and/or the start of the Goryeo…

  • Beomeosa,  Busan

    Geumgangam Hermitage – 금강암 (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!  Hermitage History Geumgangam Hermitage, which means “Diamond Hermitage” in English, is one of the more popular hermitages on the Beomeosa Temple grounds in Geumjeong-gu, Busan. Although there is no way to confirm whether Geumgangam Hermitage existed before the late Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910), there are records that show that it was constructed in 1803 by the monk Chuigyu-seonsa. Since its foundation, Geumgangam Hermitage has been reconstructed twice; first in 1863 and…

  • Jeollanam-do

    Simhyangsa Temple – 심향사 (Naju, Jeollanam-do)

    Temple History Simhyangsa Temple is located in Naju, Jeollanam-do at the foot of Mt. Geumseonsan. The temple looks out towards the Yeongsan River. It’s believed that Simhyangsa Temple was first established by the famed monk Wonhyo-daesa (617-686 A.D.). Originally, the temple was called Mireukwon after Mireuk-bul (The Future Buddha). The temple is also said to have been the place where King Hyeonjong of Goryeo (r. 1009-1031 A.D.) prayed for peace as he fled the royal palace. The Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392) was being invaded at this time by the Tungusic people of Manchuria in 1011. The temple was later repaired in 1358. And it was reconstructed by the monk Mongsu in…

  • Jeollanam-do

    Dabosa Temple – 다보사 (Naju, Jeollanam-do)

    Temple History Dabosa Temple is located on Mt. Geumseongsan (453.3 m) in Naju, Jeollanam-do. It’s believed that Dabosa Temple was first built in 661 A.D. by the famed monk Wonhyo-daesa (617-686 A.D.). However, another legend states that Dabosa Temple was in fact founded by a monk who was meditating on Mt. Geumseongsan after he had a dream that a large pagoda decorated with the seven treasures rose from the ground and Daboyeorae-bul (Abundant Treasures Buddha), or Prabhutaratna in Sanskrit, appeared from the pagoda. Dabosa Temple means “Abundant Treasures Temple” in English. The temple is believed to have been rebuilt in 1184 during the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392) by another famed monk,…

  • Gyeongsangnam-do

    Seonjisa Temple – 선지사 (Gimhae, Gyeongsangnam-do)

    Temple History Seonjisa Temple is located in the western part of Gimhae, Gyeongsangnam-do to the south of Mt. Gyeongunsan (377.2 m). Seonjisa Temple was officially registered as a temple with the Korean government in 2007. The name of Seonjisa Temple is in reference to the local town, Seonji. It is also the name of a local pond called Seonji, as well. Before 2007, it’s believed by some that there had been a temple on the Seonjisa Temple grounds until it fell into disrepair and disappeared altogether. For nearly thirty years, this temple was nothing more than a tent that the head monk lived in. Two lay women, or “bosal” in…

  • Jeollanam-do

    Bulhoesa Temple – 불회사 (Naju, Jeollanam-do)

    Temple History Bulhoesa Temple is located in Naju, Jeollanam-do to the south of Mt. Deongnyongsan (376.4 m), and it’s said to have been established in the late 4th century, although the exact date is uncertain. One legend states that it was founded in 384 A.D. by the famed Indian monk Marananta, who introduced Buddhism to the Baekje Kingdom (18 B.C. – 660 A.D.). Another legend states that the temple was founded in 367 A.D. and rebuilt in 713 A.D. The temple was renamed to Bulhosa Temple in 1530, according to documents. Later, in 1798, a fire completely destroyed the temple, which was then rebuilt in 1808. It’s also said that…

  • Gyeongsangnam-do

    Seoamjeongsa Temple – 서암정사 (Hamyang, Gyeongsangnam-do)

    Temple History Seoamjeongsa Temple is located in Hamyang, Gyeongsangnam-do in the northern part of Jirisan National Park. Seoamjeongsa Temple was built over a thirty year period starting in 1989. The temple is most famous for the cave Geukrak-jeon Hall. The cave was built by the monk Woneung to appease the spirits of those that were killed during the Korean War (1950-1953). Purportedly, this part of Mt. Jirisan (1,915 m) has a horrible history of death and misery related to the Korean War. When the monk Woneung was travelling around this part of the mountain, he heard the cries of numerous dead spirits that had lost their lives during the Korean…

  • Jeollanam-do

    Daewonsa Temple – 대원사 (Boseong, Jeollanam-do)

    Temple History Daewonsa Temple is located in Boseong, Jeollanam-do to the north of Mt. Cheonbongsan (611.7 m), which means “Phoenix Mountain” in English. Purportedly, the temple was built by the monk Ado in 503 A.D. in the Baekje Kingdom (18 B.C. – 660 A.D.). During Later Silla (668-935 A.D.), Daewonsa Temple was one of eight major temples in the Nirvana Order. Also, it makes the claim that it was one of the Five Gyo (doctrinal) and Nine Seon (meditative) temples. During the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392), Jajin Wono-guksa, who helped finish the Koreana Tripitaka engravings at Seonwonsa Temple on Ganghwa-do Island, then traveled down to Daewonsa Tepmle to help re-build shrine…

  • Jeollabuk-do

    Mireuksa-ji Temple Site – 미륵사지 (Iksan, Jeollabuk-do)

    Temple Site Legend The site for Mireuksa Temple, like so many other famed temples on the Korean peninsula, has an entry about it in the Samguk Yusa (Memorabilia of the Three Kingdoms). According to the Samguk Yusa, King Mu of Baekje (r. 600 – 641 A.D.) and his queen were on their way to Sajasa Temple when they saw a triad of Mireuk-bul (The Future Buddha) appearing above a pond near Mt. Yonghwasan (Dragon Flower Mountain). Later, at the request of the queen, King Mu of Baekje had the pond filled in with land, and a temple was built on the site where the royal couple saw the Mireuk-bul triad.…