Yonghwa Temple looks down Hallyeohaesang National Park with benevolent eyes of Buddha

김태인 기자l승인2021.08.26

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▲ Yonghwa Temple Chief Monk Jeongmuk

(PowerKorea) Many reasons can be said by people having a religion. No matter what those reasons are, people have a region in a way to seek faith, salvation, truth and peace of mind. 

Yonghwa Temple is nestled in Mireuk Mountain, Tongyeong. It was founded by Eunjeomhwasang during the reign of Queen Seondeok (632-646) of Silla with the name Jeongsu Temple. It was damaged by landslide after 3 years and Buddhists Jayoon and Sunghwa moved the location and named Chuntaek. It was burned in 1628 and monk Beokdam relocated it to the current position in 1752 and named Yonghwa which Beokdam received from Maitreya at night after praying for 7 days and nights. 

The temple has bogwangjeon, yonghwajeon, jukmookdang, haewolru, tamjingdang, chilsungak, sulbukjeon, jeongru and meongbujeon. Among these buildings, bogwangjeon is a tangible cultural heritage of South Gyeongsang Province. Above jeongru are two pagodas of which one commemorates Monk Heobong and the other has Ashoka style and 7 of Buddhist sarira. The temple also has Yonghwa Seated Stone Buddha (No.43 tangible asset of South Gyeongsang Province). 

Buddha’s teaching says that Buddhists should not do bad things but do good things and clear their mind. Chief Monk Jeongmuk says “Delivering teaching of Buddha to the people is the reason and goal of my life. The teaching helps us escape from the bondages of human and god and make our mind peaceful and take others as our teachers. Everyone is Buddha and everyone is our teacher. In other words, we should live without prejudice against others.”

Asking ordinary people not to possess is very difficult task because there is no other desire stronger than possessiveness in human nature. But we can share things with others which is called ‘offering’ in Buddhist terms from which we can live in a better world according to Jeongmuk.

“Training of mind is not a difficult thing though it takes some effort. It means to simply live according to teachings of Buddha. Live with good heart and try not to be greedy. Anger makes us ill. Folly brings us problems. We can lead a happy life if we can throw away these three bad thoughts and deeds.”

Buddha said that there was no special way to enlightenment but the way ventured by the walker. 

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