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An Aspect of Buddhist Religious Life in the Late Joseon Period

  • 불교학리뷰
  • Abbr : Critical Review for Buddhist Studies
  • 2023, (33), pp.53-76
  • Publisher : Geumgang Center for Buddhist Studies
  • Research Area : Humanities > Buddhist Studies
  • Published : April 30, 2023

LEE, Jong Su 1

1순천대학교

Irregular Papers

ABSTRACT

The rulers of the Joseon Dynasty took away the power of the Buddhist community, which that it had held since the Goryeo Dynasty., but However, they did not ban the practice of Buddhism or forbid the people from practicing their faith. Nevertheless, However, the social environment for Buddhist monks in the Joseon Dynasty and later periods changed significantly, and so their religious life was bound to change. Until the mid-16th century, the state selected government-approved monks, through examinations, to manage the temples. In contrast, after the mid-16th century, Buddhism was a self-sustaining faith with no official support from the state., and Mmonks lived the life of an ascetic, taking on the burdens of various compulsory labor for Buddhist monk with a and their status was no different from that of the common people.The religious life of a monk, in the late Joseon Dynasty, generally lasted about 10 years., Dduring which this time he studied the scriptures, according to the Buddhist education curriculum, ar and then entered the Seon (Zen) Academy for a summer retreat and winter retreat, or practice of the Three Gates of Buddhist chanting. However, not all monks were great practitioners, so they were categorized as either a monk of high attainment, a good or a common monk., and Oonce they attained nirvana, they were often given the status of the Most Venerable Master, Yeombul-in (a chanting monk), Jwaseon-in (a zazen monk), or Pansa-in (a monk who is responsible for the administration or management of a temple, a scholar monk, or a layman). A layman was categorized as into either royalty, nobility, local officials, commoner people, or and slaves, and so there were differences in religious practice depending on their ability and status. The Royal Buddhist Temple was designated for the royal family designated the Royal Buddhist Temple to practice their faith, intellectuals prayed for merit through the transcription of sutras, and commoners and slaves participated in various rituals, such as the Ritual of the Te n Kings, the Ritual of the Land and Water Assembly, and the Forty-nine Days Ritual, performed at the temple. A layman’s prayer was usually for rebirth into paradise and longevity., but Ssince the Seven Stars (the Big Dipper) and the Mountain Spirits were believed to have special powers for longevity and curing diseases, temples actively built the hall of Seven Stars and the Mountain Spirits, after the 18th century, to accommodate folk beliefs.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.