Facts on Temple Stay in Korea

One of the reasons people travel is to see the beauty that exist in the world. However, sometimes our inner beauty is left unexplored. With all the chaos in our lives from school, relationships, and travel, it is important to step back and reflect on everything, something, or nothing. This is why I would recommend participating in a temple stay.

Temple stay is a cultural experience designed to enhance a person’s understanding of Buddhism. Title of Buddhism are based on the region, for instance Japanese Buddhism and Korean Buddhism. You can stay in the temple overnight to more than a couple of days.

 

What to Expect from a Temple Stay

On a side note, temple stay is open to everyone regardless of religious belief.

I’m a Christian and I chose to go on a temple stay. First, there are no gods in Buddhism and my reason for visiting is for secular reasons and not to pray to Buddha as temple stay provides various programs such as a relaxation program. I found that most temples are located in areas with beautiful scenery and it is a great place to meditate on whatever you believe in and still enjoy a part of someone’s culture. So the decision is up to you. You can pick the type of experience you want from the list of temples on en.templestay.com.

During a Temple stay you can expect to participate in these Buddhist rituals such as:

1. Yebul (ceremonial service): held 3 times a day morning midday and evening and features 108 prostrations and chants

2. Chamseon (Zen meditation): choose between a seated meditation (jwaseon) and walking meditation (haengseon)

3. Barugongyang (monastic meal): ritual of eating that requires complete silence and no wasting of food

4. Dado Tea Ceremony: drinking tea Korean style customary Korean

Also you might get to play folk games, go hiking, meditate outdoor, design lotus lantern and prayer beads.

 

Etiquette

Because temples display an atmosphere of calm and are for meditations, it is important to be quiet and gentle. So, as guests you are expected to avoid:

1. Speaking loudly, playing music, running, singing, shouting

2. Intimate physical contact with the opposite gender

3. Chewing gum, drinking alcohol, eating meat or fish, smoking, taking photos inside Buddha Hall or other buildings without permission

 

Article by Esther from the U.S.A.

 

 

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