• Gyeongsangbuk-do

    Daeunam Hermitage – 대운암 (Cheongdo, Gyeongsangbuk-do)

    Hermitage History Daeunam Hermitage is located on the southern part of the Mt. Yonggaksan (696.8 m) mountain range on Mt. Oryesan in northeastern Cheongdo, Gyeongsangbuk-do. Daeunam Hermitage was first established in 1868 near the end of the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910). Daeunam Hermitage was eventually destroyed in the 1900s by fire, and it would be rebuilt by Buam-seonsa in 1930. More recently, Daeunam Hermitage has grown in size with the additions of the Sanshin-gak Hall in 1996, the dorms in 1998, and the Gwaneum-jeon Hall in 2000. Daeunam Hermitage is also home to Gyeongsangbuk-do Cultural Property Material #309, which is the Seated Wooden Gwaneum-bosal Statue and Accompanying Relics of Daeunam Hermitage.…

  • North Korea

    Pyohunsa Temple – 표훈사 (Kumgang, Kangwon-to, North Korea)

    Temple History Pyohunsa Temple is located in Kumgang [Geumgang], Kangwon-to [Gangwon-do], North Korea near Mt. Kumgangsan [Mt. Geumgangsan] (1638 m). And for some of this article, it should be noted, that the spelling of North Korean places will use the North Korean style of spelling. Pyohunsa Temple was first founded in 670 A.D. just two years after the unification of the Korean Peninsula under Unified Silla (668-935 A.D.) rule. The temple was established by disciples of Uisang-daesa (625-702 A.D.). These monks were Neungin, Sillim, and Pyohun; and originally, the temple was called Sillimsa Temple. However, the temple changed its name to Pyohunsa Temple some three years after it was first…

  • Busan

    Bokcheonsa Temple – 복천사 (Yeongdo-gu, Busan)

    Temple History Bokcheonsa Temple is located in Yeongdo-gu, Busan on the west side of Mt. Bongraesan (396.2 m). According to tradition, it’s believed that Bokcheonsa Temple was founded by the monk Naong Hyegeun (1320-1376) at the end of the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392). However, the exact date of the temple’s founding remains unknown. At the time of its founding, Bokcheonsa Temple was known as Haeunam Hermitage. During the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910), Yeong-do Island was known as Jeolyeong-do Island. It was at this time that the island was closed off to the general public for a couple of reasons. First, it was to protect the land from Japanese pirates. Secondly, the land…

  • North Korea

    Sounsa Temple – 서운사 (Yongbyon, Pyonganbuk-to, North Korea)

    Temple History Sounsa Temple [Seounsa Temple] is located in Yongbyon, Pyonganbuk-to, North Korea on Mt. Yaksan. And for some of this article, it should be noted, that the spelling of North Korean places will use the North Korean style of spelling. According to the “Sounsa Hyangbuldabbi,” the temple was first founded in 1345. As for the name of the temple, the reason that it was named Sounsa Temple [Seounsa Temple] is because it was always cloudy in the area around the temple. The current temple shrine halls at Sounsa Temple [Seounsa Temple] date back to 1654. And they were rebuilt in 1678 and 1756. Until recently, Sounsa Temple consisted of…

  • Ulsan

    Gulamsa Temple – 굴암사 (Ulju-gun, Ulsan)

    Temple History Gulamsa Temple is located in the far western part of Ulsan in Ulju-gun on Mt. Hwajangsan (271.6 m). Purportedly, the temple was founded by the monk Dohwa-doin during the reign of King Soji of Silla (r. 479-500 A.D.). However, after its founding, very little is known about the temple. What is known is that it was rebuilt in 1966 by An Seok-beom of Haeinsa Temple in Hapcheon, Gyeongsangnam-do. Currently, Gulamsa Temple belongs to the Taego-jong Order, which is the second largest Buddhist order in Korea. As for the founding of the temple, there’s an interesting little legend that goes along with it. According to this legend, King Soji…

  • North Korea

    Chonjusa Temple – 천주사 (Yongbyon, Pyonganbuk-to, North Korea)

    Temple History Chonjusa Temple [Cheonjusa Temple] is located on the southern slopes of Mt. Yaksan in Yongbyon, Pyonganbuk-to, North Korea. And for some of this article, it should be noted, that the spelling of North Korean places will use the North Korean style of spelling. The location of the Chonjusa Temple has long been considered one of the Eight Scenic Views of Gwanseo. The present Chonjusa Temple was founded in 1684, while rebuilding the inner fortress on Mt. Buksan. However, it’s believed that Chonjusa Temple existed before 1684, but it fell into disrepair. Chonjusa Temple was then later rebuilt in 1722. While once larger in size, the temple now only…

  • Gyeongju

    Jingwangsa Temple – 진광사 (Gyeongju)

    Temple History Jingwangsa Temple is located in eastern Gyeongju near the East Sea and the famous the Gameunsa-ji Temple Site. Unlike the majority of Korean Buddhist temples that fall under one of three main Buddhist orders – the Jogye-jong Order, the Taego-jong Order, and the Cheontae-jong Order – Jingwangsa Temple belongs to the Jodong-jong Order. The Jodong-jong Order is a transliteration of the Caodong school. It is one of the 27 Korean Buddhist sects and orders, and it was first founded in May, 1989. The Jodong-jong Order is headquartered out of Cheongryongsa Temple in Jongno-gu, Seoul. In this form of Buddhism, Seokgamoni-bul (The Historical Buddha) is the central Buddha of…

  • Ulsan

    Sinheungsa Temple – 신흥사 (Buk-gu, Ulsan)

    Temple History Sinheungsa Temple is located in Buk-gu, Ulsan. The temple was first founded in 635 A.D. by the monk Myeongrang-beopsa. The temple was built in the hopes of peace. Originally, the temple was named Geonheungsa Temple. According to temple records, the temple helped train one hundred monks in 678 A.D. Sinheungsa Temple also played a part in the Imjin War (1592-1598). The temple sent three hundred bags of rice and warrior monks that joined the Righteous Army in the defence of the Korean peninsula. Unfortunately, because of the role it played in defending Korea, Sinheungsa Temple was destroyed by the invading Japanese. The temple was later rebuilt in 1646…

  • North Korea

    Yujomsa Temple – 유점사 (Kosan, Kangwon-to, North Korea)

    Temple Myth This temple post is a little different than others in that the temple no longer exists. However, because of its historical significance, and with it being in North Korea, I decided to do a post on it. And it should be noted, before I get too far ahead of myself, that this article will largely use the North Korean spelling of locations. Now, with all that being said, Yujomsa Temple [Yujeomsa Temple] has one of the more interesting temple myths associated with it. Rather strangely, and according to “Saji,” a historical document, Yujomsa Temple [Yujeomsa Temple] was first founded in 4 A.D., which is rather odd since Buddhism…

  • Gyeongsangbuk-do

    Daedunsa Temple – 대둔사 (Gumi, Gyeongsangbuk-do)

    Temple History Daedunsa Temple is located on the northeastern side of Mt. Bokusan (508 m) in northern Gumi, Gyeongsangbuk-do. Daedunsa Temple is one of the earliest temples to have been established in Korea that’s still in existence. The temple was founded in 446 A.D. by the monk Ado, who may or may not be the same Ado that founded Jikjisa Temple. In 1231, Daedunsa Temple was completely destroyed by fire by the invading Mongols during the Mongol Invasions of Korea (1231-1270). The temple would be rebuilt during the reign of King Chungnyeol of Goryeo (r. 1274-1308). In fact, the temple was rebuilt by Wangsogun, who was the eldest son of…