• Gyeongsangbuk-do

    Bongjeongsa Temple – 봉정사 (Andong, Gyeongsangbuk-do)

    Temple History Bongjeongsa Temple, which is located in Andong, Gyeongsangbuk-do, was first built in 672 A.D. However, there is some dispute as to who first built Bongjeongsa Temple. According to the Yangbeopdang-jungsu-gi, the founder of Bongjeongsa Temple is the famed temple builder, Uisang-daesa (625-702 A.D.). However, according to the Sangnyangmun records of the historic Geukrak-jeon Hall, the temple’s founder was Neungin-daedeok (a disciple of Uisang-daesa). These two aforementioned documents, which document the history of Bongjeongsa Temple, are the two oldest documents regarding the foundation of a temple in Korea. However, it seems as though Neungin-daedeok is the more probable founder of Bongjeongsa Temple. According to the Samguk Yusa (Memorabilia of…

  • Jeollanam-do

    Seonamsa Temple – 선암사 (Suncheon, Jeollanam-do)

    Temple History Seonamsa Temple means “Immortals Rock Temple,” in English. The name of the temple is in reference to a flat rock west of the temple where Taoist monks used to play baduk (Go). Seonamsa Temple is located on the western side of Jogyesan Provincial Park. And both Seonamsa Temple and Jogyesan Provincial Park are located in Suncheon, Jeollanam-do just like its famous neighbour: Songgwangsa Temple. There are two competing foundation stories as to how Seonamsa Temple was first built. One states that the missionary monk Ado-hwasang built a hermitage that was named Biroam Hermitage (The Buddha of Cosmic Energy Hermitage) in the same location as present day Seonamsa Temple…

  • Gyeongju

    Bulguksa Temple – 불국사 (Gyeongju)

    Temple History Without a doubt, Bulguksa Temple in Gyeongju is the most famous Korean Buddhist temple both in Korea and internationally. Bulguksa Temple is located at the western foot of Mt. Tohamsan (745 m) in eastern Gyeongju (the former capital of the Silla Kingdom). Bulguksa Temple means “Buddha Kingdom Temple” in English. The name of Bulguksa Temple can have two possible meanings. The first is that traveling through the architectural landscape is like taking a journey through the spiritual realm of the Buddhas. So in a way, it’s an architectural manifestation of the celestial realm of the Buddhas on earth. And the second meaning is in reference to the Unified…

  • Gyeongsangnam-do

    Haeinsa Temple – 해인사 (Hapcheon, Gyeongsangnam-do)

    Temple History Haeinsa Temple means “Ocean Seal Temple” in English. The name of the temple is in reference to the “Ocean Seal” samadhi (meditative consciousness) from the Avatamsaka Sutra, or Flower Garland Sutra in English, or Hwaeom-gyeong in Korean. The reason for this reference is the idea that the mind is like the surface of a perfectly calm sea. And it’s from this that the true image of our existence is clearly reflected and everything appears as it is. Alongside Tongdosa Temple in Yangsan, Gyeongsangnam-do and Songgwangsa Temple in Suncheon, Jeollanam-do, Haeinsa Temple forms the Three Jewel Temples (삼보사찰, or Sambosachal in English). Tongdosa Temple represents the Buddha, Songgwangsa Temple…

  • Gyeongju,  Video

    Video: Seokguram Hermitage – 석굴암 (Gyeongju)

    Hello Again Everyone!! Alongside Bulguksa Temple, Seokguram Hermitage is the most internationally recognizable Buddhist site in Korea. And with Bulguksa Temple, Seokguram Hermitage was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Seokguram Hermitage was first built in 774 A.D. And the name of the temple means “Stone Cave Hermitage,” in English. The statue inside the grotto at Seokguram Hermitage is the most beautiful image of the Buddha, Seokgamoni-bul, in all of Korea and perhaps Asia. The statue is spell-binding just as soon as you step inside the stone grotto. So follow me, as we explore together, this amazing feat in both artistic and religious excellence in Gyeongju!

  • Gyeongju,  Video

    Video: Bulguksa Temple – 불국사 (Gyeongju)

    Hello Again Everyone!! Bulguksa Temple in the ancient capital of Korea is located in the beautiful city of Gyeongju. It’s also probably Korea’s most internationally recognizable temple. First constructed 528 A.D., the name of the temple means “Buddha Land Temple,” in English. And in 1995, alongside the famous Seokguram Hermitage on Mt. Tohamsan, Bulguksa Temple was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There’s a lot to see and enjoy at Bulguksa Temple like the 6 National Treasures. So take your time and enjoy all that this amazing temple has to offer. So follow me as I travel through Korea’s most famous temple in the outdoor museum of the city of…