Colonial Korea: Beopjusa Temple – 법주사 (Boeun-Gun, Chungcheongbuk-do)

Beopjusa3 - Palsangjeon

National Treasure #55, the Palsang-jeon Hall at Beopjusa Temple in 1932.

Hello Again Everyone!!

Beopjusa Temple, which means “The Place Where the Dharma Resides Temple,” in English, is located in Boeun-Gun, Chungcheongbuk-do. The temple was first established in 553 A.D. by the monk Uisin. The reason that Beopjusa Temple has its name is that Uisin brought back a number of Indian sutras from his travels to be housed at the temple.

During the Goryeo Dynasty, which lasted from 918 to 1392, Beopjusa Temple housed as many as 3,000 monks at its height. In fact, at one point in its history, in the 1100s, 30,000 monks gathered at Beopjusa Temple to pray for the dying Uicheon, a national priest. As a result of a lack of support for Buddhism during the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910), Beopjusa Temple shrank in size and influence. And during the Imjin War (1592-98), Beopjusa Temple suffered extensive damage. Fortunately, Beopjusa Temple was restored to its former glory in 1624. It’s also at this time that the famed Palsang-jeon wooden pagoda was rebuilt.

More recently, and in the 1960s, Beopjusa Temple underwent extensive renovation and repairs. Then, in 1988, the massive bronze statue of Mireuk-bul (The Future Buddha), which stands at an impressive thirty-three metres in height, was erected to replace the concrete one that had previously taken up residence at Beopjusa Temple.

In total, Beopjusa Temple houses three National Treasures and an additional twelve Treasures.

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A mountainside view of Beopjusa Temple in 1932.

Beopjusa - 1916 - Chalgan Jiju

The flag pole supports from 1916.

Beopjusa19 - Seokryeonji

A stone artifact from 1916 called the Seokryeon-ji.

Beopjusa Cheonwangmun 1932

The Cheonwangmun Gate in 1932.

Beopjusa2 - Cheonwangmun 1932

A closer look at the Cheonwangmun Gate.

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The stone lantern out in front of the Cheonwangmun Gate in 1916.

Beopjusa5 - Palsangjeon 1932

The amazing Palsang-jeon pagoda in 1932.

Beopjusa4 - Palsangjeon

A closer look at the Palsang-jeon pagoda.

Beopjusa7 - Palsangjeon 1932

And one more look at the Palsang-jeon pagoda.

Beopjusa50 - Ssangsa Seokdeung

The Twin Lion Stone Lantern out in front of the main hall from 1916.

Beopjusa30 - Ssangsa Seokdeung

Another look at the Twin Lion Stone Lantern with a monk to the right.

Beopjusa8 - Daeungjeon

The massive Daeung-jeon Hall at Beopjusa Temple in 1932.

Beopjusa9 - Daeungjeon 1932

A look inside the Daeung-jeon Hall.

Beopjusa10 - Daeungjeon 1932

And a look at the main altar inside the Daeung-jeon Hall.

Picture 385 - 2011

The Cheonwangmun Gate in 2011.

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The Palsang-jeon pagoda in 2015.

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The Twin Lion Stone Lantern in 2015.

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A look up at the main hall in 2015.

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The view from the Daeung-jeon main hall in 2015.

Picture 120 - 2011

A look inside the Daeung-jeon Hall at the main altar in 2011.

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