- International Seon Center Temple
- ==== The International Seon Center ====
The International Seon Center is a Seon (Zen) meditation and Buddhist propogation training center as well as a learning facility for Buddhist cultural practices. The overall aim of the center is to promote awareness of the inherent value of Korean Buddhism and its practices to the global community. The center contains a templestay facility, a large prayer hall, and a culture and education center, and provides temple-stay programs, Seon lectures, traditional Buddhist temple cuisine cooking classes, tea ceremonies, and many other programs and activities which aim to provide a living experience of traditional Korean Buddhist culture. To cater for the needs of international visitors, Korean to English interpretation is provided throughout many of the centers activities. The center is continuously developing a residential temple stay and temple life program to offer direct experience of Korean Buddhist culture for both Koreans and international visitors. In order to further promote the practice of Seon meditation throughout the world, the center holds academic seminars, exchanges ideas with different religions, facilitates international study exchanges, and regularly holds forums on Buddhist studies. Here at the International Seon Center, the staff is fully committed to spreading the teachings and practices of Buddhism. Connecting with Buddhist centers globally, the international seon center is building a diverse and interconnected network in order to communicate and exchange ideas throughout the world.
=== Saturday Evening Dharma School ===
Participants: Open to all
Program Schedule: Every Saturday Evening
-19:00 ~ 19:20 : Introduction to Buddhism Evening Chanting
-19:20 ~ 20:00 : Sitting Meditation (30 mins) Walking Meditation (10mins)
-20:20 ~ 20:50 : Dharma Talk Q&A Session
Location: International Seon Center: Temple Stay Dharma Hall, 5th Floor
Cost: Free (Donations are gratefully welcomed)
Apart from Templestays, the Seon Center also offers Saturday evening meditation classes year-round with the purpose of helping individuals find peace within the hectic modern world. The program is conducted entirely in English and is open to beginners and advanced students alike.
For more details about templestays or the Saturday dharma school, please feel free to contact our international relations director: Kim, Yong Tae (010-5053-8819)
- Bongeunsa Temple
- History of Bongeunsa TempleBongeunsa is a 1,200 year old temple located in Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul. Built in 794 C.E. during the reign of King Wonseong by National Teacher, Ven. Yeonhoe, Bongeunsa became the head temple of the Seon sect during the Joseon Dynasty, when the government supported Confucianism, while oppressing Buddhism. Due to the efforts of Ven. Bowu, who devoted himself to the revival of Korean Buddhism, by official recognition Bongeunsa became a stepping stone for this development. In addition, through the national examinations for recruiting monks, it produced great masters such as Master Seosan and Samyeong, who revived the lineage of Seon (Zen) practice in Korea. In the latter part of the Joseon Dynasty, Ven. Younggi built the Pan-jeon to store and preserve Buddhist scriptures, as well as eighty-one engraved volumes of the Avatamsaka Sutra. Jeonghee Kim, at that time a great scholar and calligrapher, resided here and developed his own unique writing style, known as Chusache. More recently, when Bongeunsa was experiencing a period of decline, Ven. Youngam gradually gathered land and laid the foundation for a huge temple compound in present-day Gangnam. In the 1960s, the Dongguk Translation Institute was established at this temple to spearhead the translation of Buddhist scriptures from Chinese to Korean. This temple was also the birthplace of the Buddhist youth movement. Today, Bongeunsa is writing a new history for Korean Buddhism, establishing itself as the center of Buddhist practice. Monks apply themselves to chanting, monastic meals, communal work, and Seon meditation. The administration opened its financial records to the public, and allowed the laity to be part of management. The lay people are not only engaged in religious activities including prayer, meditation and Buddhist services, but also participate in volunteer work and other social work to help modern-day Buddhism reach out to the community. Moreover, more and more Buddhists are studying scriptures to stay on the right track as followers of the Buddha. With this drive from all parts of temple, Bongeunsa is moving ahead to become a haven of practice and compassion.
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