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Hongjeam Hermitage – 홍제암 (Hapcheon, Gyeongsangnam-do)

Koreabridge - Wed, 2021-10-27 23:28
Hongjeam Hermitage in Hapcheon, Gyeongsangnam-do on the Haeinsa Temple Grounds. Hermitage History

Hongjeam Hermitage is located in the heart of Gayasan National Park just outside Hapcheon, Gyeongsangnam-do. The hermitage is directly associated with the famed Haeinsa Temple. The hermitage was first built in 1608 for the warrior monk Samyeong-daesa (1544-1610). The hermitage was built as a sign of appreciation for all of Samyeong-daesa’s efforts during the Imjin War (1592-1598) by King Seonje of Joseon (r. 1567 – 1608). Samyeong-daesa would spend the remainder of his days at Hongjeam Hermitage. The name of the hermitage comes from the posthumous title bestowed upon Samyeong-daesa. The posthumous title Samyeong-daesa received was that of Jatong Hongje-jonja. This title was given to Samyeong-daesa by King Gwanghaegun of Joseon (r. 1608 – 1623). And in 1614, the Yeongja-jeon Hall was added to the hermitage by the monk Hyegu to house the portraits of Seosan-daesa (1520-1604), Samyeong-daesa, and Yeonggyu (? – 1592).

In total, and before 1979, the hermitage had been rebuilt and renovated six times. Then in October, 1979, with special funds provided by Park Chung-hee (1917-79), Hongjeam Hermitage was completely dismantled and rebuilt. Additionally, Hongjeam Hermitage is home to two Korean Treasures. First, the hermitage itself is Korean Treasure #1300, while the Stupa of Buddhist Monk Samyeong and Stele at Hongjeam Hermitage are Korean Treasure #1301.

Admission to Haeinsa Temple, where Hongjeam Hermitage is located, is 3,000 won for adults, 1,500 won for teenagers, and 700 won for children.

Hermitage Layout

Heading northwest past the Iljumun Gate at Haeinsa Temple, you’ll first come to a collection of stupas and stele. This collection is home to monks that once called Hongjeam Hermitage home, including Samyeong-daesa. There are four stupas to the left, while the five stele, including the one dedicated to Samyeong-daesa, are to the right. And Samyeong-daesa’s stele is quite easy to spot because not only does it stand in the centre of the nine stone monuments, but its body has been broken in the middle into four distinct pieces.

The stele dedicated to Samyeong-daesa was first erected in 1612. And the text of the stele was written by Heo Gyun (1569 – 1618), who is famously known for writing the classical Hong Gil-dong jeon (Tale of Hong Gil-dong). And the reason that the stele now appears in four fragmented pieces is because in 1943, during Japanese Colonization, the Japanese colonial administration ordered the police of Hapcheon to dismantle, and then destroy, Samyeong-daesa’s stele. The reason, and ultimate need for the stele’s destruction, was because the Japanese Colonial government believed that the inscription on the stele was seditious and that it could lead to nationalist sentiment in Koreans. Fortunately, the stele was eventually found. But when it was found, it was discovered to have been broken into four separate pieces. In 1958, the stele was repaired and re-erected on the same exact ground that it had been taken from and destroyed in 1943 at Hongjeam Hermitage. The stele is the oldest extant stone monument dedicated to Samyeong-daesa.

And to the right rear of these nine stupas and stele, including Samyeong-daesa’s, you’ll find a courtyard memorial for those that fought in the Imjin War (1592-1598). It’s also in this area, and flanking the neighbouring hillside, that you’ll find the stupa dedicated to Samyeong-daesa. It’s about twenty metres northeast of Hongjeam Hermitage. The stupa is shaped in the traditional bell-shape. The bell-shaped stone stupa sits atop a two-tier platform. And at the top of the stupa, you’ll find a lotus-shaped cintamani (wish-fulfilling jewel).

Now having passed by the stone artifacts, you’ll approach the main hermitage grounds. When you do finally enter the main hermitage grounds, you’ll be met by a collection of buildings. The ones to the far left are the monks’ facilities like the kitchen and dorms. To the right, on the other hand, is the Daeung-jeon Hall at Hongjeam Hermitage. Stepping inside the elevated main hall, you’ll first notice the well-populated main hall. In total, there are five statues resting on the main altar. In the centre of the five is a large, golden statue dedicated to Seokgamoni-bul (The Historical Buddha). This central image is joined to the left and right by Yaksayeorae-bul (The Buddha of the Eastern Paradise and the Medicine Buddha) and Amita-bul (The Buddha of the Western Paradise). To the right and left of these three central statues are Gwanseeum-bosal (The Bodhisattva of Compassion) and Daesaeji-bosal (The Bodhisattva of Wisdom and Power for Amita-bul). The interior walls to the Daeung-jeon Hall are lined with elaborate Palsang-do (The Eight Scenes from the Buddha’s Life Murals). Also, there hangs a mural that depicts three different incarnations of Dongjin-bosal (The Bodhisattva that Protects the Buddha’s Teachings) inside the main hall, as well.

To the left of the Daeung-jeon Hall, and tucked away, is the Myeongbu-jeon Hall at Hongjeam Hermitage. Upon immediately entering the Myeongbu-jeon Hall, you’ll notice a diminutive statue of Jijang-bosal (The Bodhisattva of the Afterlife) on the main altar. And there’s a colourful taenghwa (altar mural) backing Jijang-bosal. Hanging over top of the entry to the Myeongbu-jeon Hall, and slightly to the right, you’ll find a Gamno-do (Sweet Dew Mural). But the most interesting pair of murals hang to the left of the main altar inside the Myeongbu-jeon Hall. The first is an older Sanshin (Mountain Spirit) mural, while the other is a Shinjung Taenghwa (Guardian Mural).

Now, this is where Hongjeam Hermitage gets a bit more interesting. Exiting out of the first hermitage compound to the left rear, you’ll come out on the other side of the compound next to a rolling stream and a large cabbage patch field. It’s to the rear of this cabbage patch, and the buildings that back this field, that you’ll come to an amazing Sanshin-gak Hall. Resting inside this shaman shrine hall is a statue and painting dedicated to Sanshin (The Mountain Spirit). But what sets these two pieces of Buddhist art apart from others is that this Sanshin appears as a Bodhisattva. In this painting, you find the blending and blurring of traditional Korean spirituality with that of Buddhism. This artwork is a one-off. Nowhere else in Korea have I seen such a synthesis of shamanic and Buddhist artistic iconography. To the left of the Sanshin-gak Hall are two encased rows of Nahan (The Disciples of the Historical Buddha) statues. In addition, and among the rocks that jet out from the ground, you’ll find a pair of stone statues dedicated to Jijang-bosal and Yaksayeorae-bul to the right.

How To Get There

To get to Hongjeam Hermitage, you’ll first need to get to Haeinsa Temple. From the Hapcheon Intercity Bus Terminal, you’ll need to board a bus bound for Haeinsa Temple. The bus ride is about 5,000 won. From where the bus lets you off at Haeinsa Temple, you’ll need to find the trail that leads up to Haeinsa Temple. The walk is about one kilometre, and the trail starts to the left of the Haeinsa Temple museum. Arriving at Haeinsa Temple, and standing next to the Iljumun Gate, you’ll need to continue onward to your left. Head towards the neighbouring parking lot and cross over the narrow stone bridge, where you’ll finally catch your first glimpse of the stupas and stele at Hongjeam Hermitage. In total, the walk from Haeinsa Temple to Hongjeam Hermitage is about three hundred metres.

Overall Rating: 6/10

Hongjeam Hermitage is important for one very good reason, it’s the eternal resting place of the warrior monk, Samyeong-daesa. In fact, the entire hermitage was made for him for his retirement. And because of this, it’s home to two beautiful stone artifacts that are also Korean Treasures. In addition to all of this history, Hongjeam Hermitage is also home to one of the most unique images of Sanshin (The Mountain Spirit) in all of Korea. And in combination with the neighbouring Haeinsa Temple, Hongjeam Hermitage makes for quite an amazing trip to Gayasan National Park.

The fall colours at Gayasan National Park. The stone stupas and stele at the entry of Hongjeam Hermitage. The historic Stupa of Buddhist Monk Samyeong and Stele at Hongjeam Hermitage. The main grounds at Hongjeam Hermitage. The main altar inside the Daeung-jeon Hall. The main altar inside the Myeongbu-jeon Hall. The older Shinjung Taenghwa (Guardian Mural) inside the Myeongbu-jeon Hall. As well as this Sanshin (Mountain Spirit) mural. The cabbage patch field leading up to the Sanshin-gak Hall. The hexagonal Sanshin-gak Hall. Inside is this hybrid Sanshin (Mountain Spirit) painting and statue. A closer looking at the blending of Korean Buddhism and shamanism. —


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Yangsan english teaching job

Koreabridge - Wed, 2021-10-27 08:41
Classified Ad Type: Location: Neighborhood: Contact person by email

Hello,  im looking for a partime teaching job in Yangsan or busan near deokchan Station,Work until 4 pm.

I am a certified teacher with a degree in elementary education. 

Teaching In korea for 3 years.

F visa 

Please send me an email and  i will send resume 

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Licensed and TESOL Certified Canadian Teacher Seeking Non-Institute Position

Koreabridge - Wed, 2021-10-27 07:39
Classified Ad Type: Location: Neighborhood: Anywhere In BusanContact person by email

Good day. My name is Patrick. I'm a permanent resident with a F-5 visa, Education degree and Canadian teacher's license residing in Busan. I'm looking for a new position effective March 1st, 2022. If given the opportunity to teach at your school, either your elementary, middle, high school, or post-secondary students will be quite satisfied with my teaching and personal support. I will empower your students to develop stronger communication and leadership skills. If you want a teacher who engages his students, possesses strong classroom management skills, and is a solid team player, don't hesitate to contact me. I am sure we will be a good match for each other.

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Coffee makers, hair-dryer

Koreabridge - Wed, 2021-10-27 05:12
Classified Ad Type: Location: Neighborhood: Centum city, Suyeong areaContact person by email

1) white small coffee maker for 5,000 won

2) Tefal coffee maker for 10,000 won obo

3) hair dryer for 5,000 won



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Calvin Klein loafers (new)

Koreabridge - Wed, 2021-10-27 04:56
Classified Ad Type: Location: Neighborhood: Centum city, Suyeong areaContact person by email

Bought these beautiful shoes Calvin Klein, (beige color, real leather) from US (해외직구), but size is a little big for me. 
8.5 US size ( Korean is around 250-255 I guess)
Selling for 60,000 KRW. 
PM if interested.

F52CA98D-B958-468B-B610-F525E1613EF4.jpeg 490A857D-D27D-48C7-8B6A-B616F96883C6.jpeg 7A1204AC-11DA-44FC-981E-82A3D7AEFE45.jpeg
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moving sale

Koreabridge - Wed, 2021-10-27 03:45
Classified Ad Type: Location: Neighborhood: Jangjeon, near PNUContact person by email

small size suitcase traveler 5000 woon each

ball 5000 woon

skateboard 10000 woon

shelf 10000 woon

20 highlighter 5000 woon

twin bed frame 10000 woon


send message on Kakao Talk: JAE2210



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Pepero Day In Korea 2021: Korea’s Most Delicious Holiday

Koreabridge - Tue, 2021-10-26 04:03

Every November 11th, Koreans up and down the country indulge in the most delicious, chocolatey holiday in Korea. That’s because November 11th is Pepero Day in Korea – a day when Koreans (and I) indulge in chocolate-covered sticks that (apparently) make you slim.

If you’re wondering what are Pepero, what Pepero Day is, and how Korea came to dedicate a whole day to a snack, keep on reading and you’ll find out. The story is more interesting and twisted than you might think.

Grab a coffee, something sweet and learn all about Pepero Day in Korea. Find out how this innocent holiday actually masks a deep rivalry with a close neighbour, and a battle between corporate giants from the two countries.

Disclaimer: This site contains affiliate links and I may earn commission for purchases made after clicking one of these links. Affiliate Disclaimer

What Is Pepero Day In Korea?

Firstly, if you’re reading this on November 11th then…

Happy Pepero Day!

Pepero Day (빼빼로 데이) is on November 11th each year and has been running since the late 1990’s and continues to grow every year. Not to be mistaken for Pocky Day, a very similar holiday in Japan, which I’ll talk about later.

Pepero Day is a kind of crossover between Valentine’s Day and Easter, in that people give gifts to each other and eat a lot of chocolatey goodies.

People in Korea typically give Pepero to children, co-workers, friends, or family members. It’s a cheap snack and giving it as a gift can surely only look good and not cost you that much (unless you have a lot of co-workers or friends!).

Whilst Pepero Day is a gift giving holiday, there’s also plenty of self-indulgence going on. I freely admit to buying several boxes of Pepero for myself before and after Pepero Day.

How Pepero Day started in Korea is a curious story, which I’ll explain more about later. I’ll also offer insights into how to celebrate Pepero Day in Korea and how I enjoy this sweet day.

Now, if you haven’t worked it out from the pictures so far, you might be wondering what Pepero are.

Let’s take a look.

What Are Pepero?

Pepero are basically chocolate-covered thin biscuit sticks that you can nibble slowly, dunk into a coffee, use to poke your friends, or stick in your mouth to pretend to be a vampire.

They’re very versatile and fun and come in an increasing number of different flavours and styles. Every year there seems to be new Pepero coming out that offer different tastes, shapes, and sizes to the original tall, thin Pepero.

One flavour that could be a big hit this year is the dalgona flavour (pictured below). Dalgona shot to global fame (notoriety) thanks to Netflix’s Squid Game series. Don’t worry, though, you won’t be in danger eating these Pepero!

Here’s some of the various flavours of Pepero you can try:

  • Chocolate (Original)
  • Strawberry
  • Almond (coated with chocolate)
  • Green Tea
  • White Chocolate Cookie
  • Black Chocolate Cookie
  • Tiramisu 
  • Cheese
  • Melon
  • Peanut
  • Black Chocolate
  • Blueberry Yogurt
  • Cherry (Double Dip)
  • Mint Chocolate
  • Yakult Yoghurt
  • Strawberry (Double Dip)
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Dark Chocolate (original)
  • Peanut Butter
  • Latte
  • Peanuts & Pretzel

Do you feel like trying any of these Pepero flavours? How about the sweetcorn flavoured ones in the picture below?

And here’s the different styles of Pepero you can eat on Pepero Day in Korea.

  • Original – Chocolate coated biscuit
  • Nude – Chocolate in the centre with a biscuit coating on the outside
  • Double Dip – Two coatings instead of one
  • Super Sized – Giant Pepero that are much taller and thicker than the original
  • Bap (rice) Pop – Rice based Pepero with popping candy on the outside (pictured below)
  • Jelly – Rubbery Pepero that are filled with a sweet jelly.

Source: Wikipedia

Who Makes Pepero?

Pepero are made by the Lotte Corporation – one of Korea’s big conglomerates that seem to make everything (like Samsung & LG).

The history of how they came up with the idea for Pepero is more than a little controversial, something I’ll cover later on.

Although Pepero Day is massively commercialised, it’s still a nice day that is all about giving gifts to friends, and receiving delicious snacks. Pepero Day can bring a bit of happiness to the world.

Now it’s time to learn more about the dark history of Pepero and how it fuelled the fight between two East-Asian superpowers.

How Did Pepero Day Get Started?

So how did Koreans end up eating Pepero on November 11th every year?

Actually, the truth isn’t that clear, it’s been lost in the folds of time as so many other traditions and superstitions tend to be.

The version from Lotte is that it all started in the 1980s when school girls gave each other Pepero in the hope that they would both become tall and thin like the snack itself.

I’m not sure if they actually wanted to look that tall and thin, nor how a sugary snack is meant to help you become thinner. That’s the story that sounds the nicest for marketing execs and advertisers, though.

Therefore, that’s what Lotte sells everyone – a dream of being tall and thin like a Pepero.

In fact, to become tall and thin, you must eat 11 packets of Pepero at exactly 11 seconds past 11:11 am and 11:11 pm on November 11th.

Are you up for the challenge on Pepero Day in Korea this year?

An alternative explanation is that the Pepero sticks resemble the number 1. There are certainly more 1’s on November 11th (11/11) than any other date, so this must be the time to eat Pocky!

Whatever the truth, Pepero Day in Korea is big business for Lotte. 50% of all Pepero sales occur during this time.

So what makes Pepero Day’s history so controversial? Let me explain.

Pepero Day’s Dark History: Pepero Day Vs Pocky Day

I first knew November 11th as Pocky Day as I lived in Japan before I lived in Korea. Pocky, as you can see from the picture above, are kind of identical to Pepero.

There is actually a bit of controversy surrounding the two products.

Glico launched Pocky in 1966, 17 years before Lotte ‘created’ Pepero in 1983. When Lotte decided to sell Pepero, Glico tried to stop them, arguing it was a blatant copy of Pocky.

Which it certainly was, as you can see.

However, Lotte argued that because Pocky weren’t sold in Korea at that time, there was no copyright infringement. Yeah, not sure that would stick in most countries, but it saved Lotte and they were allowed to keep making Pepero.

There’s another twist here, though… Pepero Day came before Pocky Day!

Pepero Day started in the 1980’s and was officially recognised as a special day in Korea in 1997. Glico saw the massive money this could make and Pocky Day became officially recognised in Japan in 1999 – two years after Pepero Day.

So both companies have benefited from this strange case of copyright infringement and stealing ideas from each other.

Whatever, we all win as now we can celebrate Pepero Day in Korea or Pocky Day in Japan, or whichever you want. Both are on sale in Korea, so choose your side wisely.

Now it’s time to see how to celebrate Pepero Day and embrace some delicious Korean culture.

What Should I Do On Pepero Day In Korea?

If you’re living in or visiting Korea, then why not join in with the gift giving? Pepero are fairly cheap (1,5000 won / $1.30) for a box and are certainly a lot cheaper than a big box of chocolates.

It’s not hard to find Pepero in the weeks before Pepero Day, just head to any convenience store or supermarket and you’ll see massive displays of Pepero and other appropriate gifts to go with them, as pictured above.

There are many special boxes of Pepero for Pepero Day. There are ones where you can write a secret message for a friend or even a crush! You can even find giant Pepero that will go down well with a loved one, apparently.

It is common to give a box of Pepero to co-workers, friends, teachers, or students. It’s similar to red money envelopes given during Chinese New Year in China, but a lot cheaper.

I’ve received a couple of boxes at work, and also shared some with friends. I look forward to enjoying them with a coffee very soon.

If you want to be a mystery Pepero gifter, sneak some boxes of Pepero onto your co-worker’s desks, place them in front of your neighbour’s door, or leave some giant Pepero for your crush.

Or leave a lovely message and confess your feelings on a day with less romantic obligations than Valentine’s Day.

How I Celebrate Pepero Day In Korea

I am a self-confessed coffee addict and I certainly have a bit of a sweet tooth! Therefore, what I love doing on Pepero Day, as I’m actually doing right now, is to have a coffee with a whole box of delicious Pepero all to myself.

One of my co-workers was kind enough to give me a box (my 4th) and I will enjoy that while thinking what to write about next. That’s the wonderful thing about this holiday – it’s all about giving and eating. What could be better?

If you’re in Korea, or have a chance to get some Pepero or Pocky, why not make a hot drink and dunk the Pepero inside for a few seconds so the chocolate melts and creates a heavenly mix of coffee and cacao.

Choose from one of the dozens of flavours that are now available, there’s something for everyone. Be tall and thin like a Pepero, but maybe don’t eat 11 boxes at once or you might regret it!

Curious About Korean Culture?

I hope you enjoyed this brief introduction to a fun bit of Korean culture. If you’re interested in learning more about Korean culture and etiquette, then you’ll love these guides I’ve put together after years of living in Korea.

They’ll definitely help you avoid cultural faux pas and embarrassing mistakes that I’ve learned the hard way to avoid, as well as teach you some interest facts about the country:

Facts About Korea Korean Etiquette Guide Expat Life In Korea Why Not Try Some Pepero Yourself?

Feeling hungry and want to try these delicious Korean snacks?

You can order them online and eat them whenever you like (no need to wait for Pepero Day). Here are two ways to get these thin treats into your life.

The first is through Amazon, where you can buy various flavours and enjoy them as much as you like.

Pepero Multipack – Amazon USA

Secondly, for those who want to know more about the incredible treats that Korea has to offer beyond just Pepero, then I’d recommend trying the Seoul Box.

The Seoul Box is packed full of Korean snacks for you to try without the hassle of flying all the way over to Korea to sample.

There are lots of wonderful Korean snacks besides Pepero which are definitely worth sampling. The box also includes some unique items from Seoul that will add some Korean flavour to your life.

Korean Snacks From SeoulBox

Whilst you’re here and probably hungry, why not check out some of my other mouth-watering articles about Korean food. You’ll find lots of ideas for things to try when you visit Korea, including many dishes you may not even know about.

Best Traditional Korean Dishes Strange Korean Foods Warming Winter Korean Food Share Your Thoughts

If you enjoyed reading this article, or if you have any thoughts about it that you want to share, please feel free to leave a message in the comments below. I’d love to hear your feedback about this article and the subject.

Alternatively, join the Korea Travel Advice group on Facebook and share your Pepero pics with everyone else.

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If you enjoyed reading this article, then please go ahead and share this with your friends on Pinterest.

Pepero Day FAQs

Finally, in case this article has left you with more questions about Pepero Day in Korea, here’s a few FAQs to help you out.

Did Pocky Day Or Pepero Day Come First?

Pepero Day was first officially celebrated in Korea in 1997. Pocky Day was first officially celebrated in Japan 2 years later in 1999. However, Glico, a Japanese company, started producing Pocky in 1966, 17 years before Lotte created Pepero. There is some controversy between Pepero and Pocky, with Glico claiming that Lotte copied Pocky when they created Pepero.

Which Company Makes Pepero?

Pepero are made by the Lotte Company. Lotte is a large Korean conglomerate that makes many different products and owns hotels, department stores, and many other businesses.

What Day Is Pepero Day In Korea?

Pepero Day in Korea is on November 11th. The first Pepero Day was officially celebrated in 1997 in Korea. There are many explanations about why this date was chosen, including the idea that the tall, thin Pepero resemble the number 1 and November 11th (11/11) is like four Pepero lined up together. Another story is that Korean schoolgirls ate Pepero to become tall and thin, like the shape of a Pepero.

What Country Are Pepero From?

Pepero are originally from South Korea but are now sold around the world. There are many different types of Pepero for sale in Korea, including the original chocolate coated sticks, ‘nude’ sticks with fillings inside, ‘double-dipped’ sticks with two flavours, and many more.

Can I Buy Pocky In Korea?

Yes, you can buy Pocky in Korea at convenience stores and supermarkets. However, as Pocky is a Japanese brand, and Pepero are Korean, you’ll find Pepero for sale in many more places. Both are available and enjoyed during Pepero Day in Korea.

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Origins – The Goguryeo Kingdom (37 B.C. – 668 A.D.)

Koreabridge - Mon, 2021-10-25 23:50
The Goguryeo Kingdom in 476 A.D., Nearly One Hundred Years After Having Entered the Kingdom (Picture Courtesy of Wikipedia).

The ancient Goguryeo Kingdom (37 B.C. – 668 A.D.) was once located in present day southern Manchuria, the Russian Maritime Provinces, and the northern part of the Korean peninsula. Just before Buddhism was introduced to the Goguryeo Kingdom, and during the reign of King Gogugwon of Goguryeo (r. 331 – 371 A.D.), it was devastated by several natural disasters. In 365 A.D., there was a large earthquake. And in 368 A.D., there was a severe drought, which resulted in a massive famine, and reported cannibalism, in 369 A.D. It was under these circumstances that people lost faith in the indigenous religion of Korean shamanism. Also, the Goguryeo Kingdom had been dealt severe militaristic blows by the neighbouring Baekje Kingdom (18 B.C. – 660 B.C.). In fact, in 371 A.D., Goguryeo’s largest city, Pyongyang (now in present day North Korea), was sacked and the Goguryeo king, King Gogugwon, was killed in the Battle of Chiyang. It was under these circumstances that the Goguryeo Kingdom had to re-organize its institutions: both politically and religiously. As a result of these combined problems, both natural and man-made, the Goguryeo Kingdom needed something new to believe in. And it was through political circumstances that this belief, in the form of Buddhism, came about.

Monk Ado-hwasang, the founding monk that helped introduce Buddhism to the Goguryeo Kingdom.

Buddhism was first introduced to the Korean peninsula through the Goguryeo Kingdom in 372 A.D. Similar to shamanism, Buddhism also believed in good fortune. This similarity made it easier to be accepted by the indigenous Korean population. This acceptance was recorded in the Samguk Sagi, or “The History of the Three Kingdoms” in English. In the Samguk Sagi, it’s recorded that “In the summer of the sixth month of the second year [of King Sosurim’s reign] 372 C.E., King Fu Jian (r. 357 – 385) of Qin dispatched an envoy and the Buddhist monk Sundo (613-681 A.D.) with Buddhist images and Buddhist texts.” In return, as a sign of appreciation, King Sosurim sent an envoy to China with gifts. And in just two years, the Chinese monk, Ado-hwasang of Former Qin, visited the Goguryeo Kingdom. This is supported, again, by the Samguk Sagi. It states, “In the fourth year [of King Sosurim’s reign], the monk Ado came. In the spring of the second month of the fifth year [375 A.D.], Seongmunsa Temple was built for Sundo and Ibullamsa Temple for Ado. That was the beginning of Buddhism in Haedong [Korea].” Thus, the early spread of Buddhism along the Korean peninsula started. And the reason it was adopted so readily in the Goguryeo Kingdom, as was hinted at before, was for political reasons. Former Qin China was a very powerful neighbour, and the Goguryeo Kingdom didn’t want to create any problems with their more powerful neighbour. So Buddhism, a religion that has helped define the nation of Korea, was first accepted to politically appease, and smooth over, relations with the Former Qin Chinese.

As a bit of an interesting side note, it’s a bit hard to believe that Buddhism only arrived in Korea when the royal court officially recognized it in 372 A.D. And this hunch would be correct, because records exist stating that Buddhism was present in the Goguryeo Kingdom prior to 372 A.D. A letter written by the monk Chih-tao-lin (314 – 366 A.D.), who was from Eastern Qin, was written to a Goguryeo monk. This letter appears in the “Liang Biographies of Eminent Monks.” In this letter, the writer praises Chu Chien (268 – 374 A.D.), who was another monk from Eastern Qin. Unfortunately, the exact date of the letter is unknown; however, it’s fair to assume that Chin-tao-lin wrote it sometime during his lifetime, which predates the generally help belief that Buddhism arrived in the Korean peninsula in 372 A.D. So while Buddhism was officially recognized by the Goguryeo court in 372 A.D., certainly a form of Buddhism predates this important year in Korean Buddhist history. What is most likely is that Buddhism was known to a small group of individuals in the Goguryeo Kingdom.

Gwanggaeto the Great (r. 391 – 413 A.D.) (Picture Courtesy of My Koguryo).

Twenty years later, and through institutional reform, Buddhism had grown so much during Gwanggaeto the Great’s rule (r. 391 – 413) that there were nine temples in the city of Pyongyang. Monk Tanoki was the first monk to really promote Buddhism in the Goguryeo Kingdom. Monk Tanoki was a foreign born monk from Former Qin (351 – 394 A.D.). He arrived in Goguryeo in 395 A.D.. With him, he brought several Buddhist texts. He achieved most of what he accomplished in the promotion of Buddhism in Liaodong, Goguryeo, before returning to Former Qin China in 405 A.D. King Gwanggaeto the Great did a lot himself to promote Buddhism in the Goguryeo Kingdom. He ordered officials to build national temples and repair royal ancestral shrines. This, for obvious reasons, helped Buddhism spread both through royal recognition and patronage. And with strong and active diplomatic ties with Northern Wei (386 – 534) and Southern Qi (479 – 502), the Goguryeo Kingdom became the strongest kingdom in Northeast Asia; and with it, the spread of Buddhism continued to grow. Interestingly, it was during this time that the prominent monk Uiyeon headed diplomatic initiatives for Goguryeo. He studied in Southern Qi, in the capital city of Ye. During his studies, he focused on a series of Mahayana Buddhism texts like the “Ten Stages Sutra,” and “Great Perfection of Wisdom Treatise.” It was this knowledge that helped to further Buddhism in Korea. Additionally, it was with this knowledge that he started an academic tradition through Mahayana Buddhism all across the Korean peninsula.

There are a couple of interesting things that occurred in the Goguryeo Kingdom as Buddhism took root. First, and through archaeological finds at Goguryeo tombs, paintings inside the tombs prove that Buddhism, shamanism, and Taoism co-existed in the religious lives of the upper class. Secondly, early Buddhism monks were also employed as spies for the nation. An example of this is when the monk Torim went to the Baekje Kingdom, during King Jangsu of Goguryeo’s reign (r. 413 – 491), where he was accepted at the royal court. As part of his efforts, he acquired information and depleted the Baekje financial resources. Furthermore, his efforts helped lead to the capture of the Baekje capital of Hansan in 475 A.D. by Goguryeo forces. Also, in the final few decades of Goguryeo Kingdom’s existence, the monk Dokchang, in 642 A.D., managed to garner information about a planned attack against the Goguryeo Kingdom by a military force of some 10,000 Silla soldiers.

Toji Temple in Kyoto, Japan.

In the latter stages of the Goguryeo Kingdom, several monks traveled to Japan to promote Goguryeo Buddhism. In fact, the Goguryeo monk Hyeja went to Japan and taught Prince Shotoku (574 – 622 A.D.) in 595 A.D. Additionally, the Baekje Kingdom’s monk Hyechong also visited Japan to promote Korean Buddhism in 595 A.D., as well. These two monks helped create the foundation for Japanese Buddhism. As a result of these efforts, in October, 596 A.D., Hokoji Temple was built by royal order in Japan.

The Goguryeo Kingdom was the first to accept and promote Buddhism on the Korean peninsula. While never as popular as it would become in the Baekje and Silla Kingdoms, the Goguryeo Kingdom would play an integral part in the transmission of Buddhism throughout the rest of the Korean peninsula and the Far East. Initially accepted for political reasons, Buddhism in the Goguryeo Kingdom would eventually grow through royal and popular support. In fact, it became so well established and respected that it helped form, in part, the foundation of Buddhism in Japan.


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많다 versus 많이 있다 | Korean FAQ

Koreabridge - Mon, 2021-10-25 15:42

A common question I hear is "How is saying 많아요 different than 많이 있어요?" And although I've answered it before in various comments, I've never made a video explaining it in more detail before.

많다 and 많이 있다 can both be used to say that there is "a lot" of something, and both are grammatically correct. But one of them might be preferred in some situations. I'll show you how they're different, when you might want to use one or the other.

The post 많다 versus 많이 있다 | Korean FAQ appeared first on Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean.





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많다 versus 많이 있다 | Korean FAQ

Koreabridge - Mon, 2021-10-25 13:00





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[NEW] Learn and speak KOREAN right now OT │----‍-- Kim misook teacher

Koreabridge - Mon, 2021-10-25 05:20

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Learning strategy which is the fastest and easiest way to reach the target TOPIK score,
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TOPIK – What You Need To Know About this Korean Test

Koreabridge - Mon, 2021-10-25 05:02

Are planning to take the TOPIK?

If you are already somewhat familiar with studying Korean or studying in South Korea as a foreigner, you may have heard the word TOPIK mentioned a few times. But what is that word, exactly? What does it stand for? And is it something you should care about?

In this article, we will go over the TOPIK exam together with you!

What is a TOPIK test?

TOPIK stands for “Test of Proficiency in Korean.” It is an exam offered multiple times a year – six different dates to be precise – for non-native speakers of Korean to test their Korean skills, whatever their level and experience may be. It is administered by the National Institute for International Education, or NIIED for short, which is a branch of the South Korean Ministry of Education.

Korean Proficiency Test

This Korean language proficiency test is especially popular among foreigners wishing to find professional employment in companies in Korea, foreigners who want a residency visa in Korea, bring the family to Korea, and other equivalent reasons.

If you’re an international student, you can even use your TOPIK grades to get into a university in South Korea. Because it takes a few weeks from taking the exam to receive the grades, it is essential to schedule the exam based on when you need to have its scores in hand! Your score for each TOPIK test is valid for two years.

TOPIK Test Format

Previously there were three different levels of TOPIK scores: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. The test consisted of four different sections: grammar and vocabulary, listening, reading, and writing. This was the format of TOPIK until 2014.

A new format has been in effect from the 35th TOPIK test onward, with the exam conducted in July 2014. There are now two levels.

New TOPIK Levels

The Two levels are TOPIK Level 1 and TOPIK Level 2. TOPIK I (or Level 1) is the equivalent of beginner (levels 1 and 2) in the old format, and TOPIK II (or Level 2) covers both intermediate and advanced levels (levels 3 to 6) in the old format.

Now for TOPIK I the test consists of only reading and listening, and TOPIK II has reading, listening, and also writing. However, the grammar and vocabulary section has been eliminated from both.

To reach the higher level in TOPIK I, you are expected to have an understanding of simple daily conversations (both formal and informal), formulate simple sentences, as well as be able to manage some public tasks in your everyday life in Korean. Meanwhile, to get the highest level in TOPIK II, your proficiency is expected to be at a level where you can function in Korean in professional tasks, research environments, comprehend a wide range of ideas and expressions, and be able to understand complex topics such as economics, politics, or topics related to the professional field.

How long is the TOPIK exam?

Excluding the writing portion, TOPIK II is fully a multiple-choice test. TOPIK I lasts for approximately two hours, while TOPIK II with the writing portion takes three hours to complete.

What is a good score on the TOPIK?

Below we’ll tell you the recommended score that you must achieve to pass the different levels.

TOPIK 1 Score

This is the equivalent to the beginner level in the old format

Each segment of the exam is worth 100 points. You need to achieve over 80 points in your test results to pass the exam. You’ll need 140 points in your results to receive level two in the exam

TOPIK 2 Score

The second level covers intermediate and advanced levels in the old format.

You need to achieve at least 120 points in your results to pass TOPIK II. To achieve the highest level in the exam, you should get at least 230 points on your results

How do you register for TOPIK?

If you are in Korea at the time of registering, you can do so at the official site for the exam, where you will also get to choose the location of the exam based on availability. Make sure you check out the official site links regularly for the announcement official date of registration and the form needed. The fee is 35,000WON for TOPIK I and 40,000WON for TOPIK II. You can pay the fee with your debit or credit card, online bank transfer, or an offline direct bank transfer. You’ll also need to include a photo in your application.

If you are in another country overseas, you should visit the local Korean embassies and Korean culture centers to register. Their websites should also show the official announcement on the date of registration and the exam. In addition to the registration fee, which is different one per country, you also need to bring along 2 passport-sized photos.

Whether you are in Korea or a different country overseas, TOPIK is always conducted in person. It is not possible to take the test online at this time.

TOPIK Test Schedule

For the year 2021, the Korean government has released several dates on when the registration will be. If you plan to take the test in your country, you should contact the Korean embassy or those who offer testing assistance services in your area for the exact dates of registration and other information.

However, if you plan to take the test in Korea, you can find the schedules below

Date of Examination – Registration

January – December 8, 2020 – December 14, 2020

April – January 29, 2021 – February 4, 2021

May – March 9, 2021 – March 15, 2021

July – May 21, 2021 – May 27, 2021

October – August 3, 2021 – August 9, 2021

November- September 7, 2021 – September 13, 2021

You can also check out NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION(NIIED) for more information on TOPIK.

How to prepare for the TOPIK test?

Typically the preparation directly for TOPIK is self-study and practice. Of course, attending a Korean language class, in general, will always help improve your skill and proficiency.

Korean Immigration Integration Program (KIIP)

In South Korea, you can enroll in a language school or the KIIP (Korean immigration integration program) program. KIIP is free to attend, but you will have to take a separate placement exam for it; in fact, most students first take the test and then register for the KIIP program using their average score to be assigned to the proper level. So a full-fledged Korean language school may prove to be a better tool, although KIIP is not as intensive in its course load if you do not have the time to enroll in a language school.

Online Language Course

For the other countries outside of Korea, you may seek out a physical class, or you may utilize many resources online to practice! For example, even our 90DayKorean program can be of great help while preparing to take TOPIK. It is not a prep course for the TOPIK test, but you can learn the fundamentals you’ll need to know for TOPIK. You can access the site wherever through a simple browser or by downloading our application. You can do so in a fun, easy, and stress-free way. This program is best for all levels, from beginners and intermediate or advanced learners.

Books and TOPIK Practice Tests

However, if you are looking to focus your studies specifically on TOPIK, your best bet is to search for books and/or a site with content dedicated to this exam. These items will cover the topics that you may come across while taking TOPIK. A test book is a guide with mock exams based on the exact way the exam is constructed and will help you measure your preparedness for the exam. Also, you may be able to find a site online with old examinations for you to print and try out; some of them are also based on actual exams! These items guarantee results.

What are the best books to prepare for TOPIK?

Because the test can be pretty tricky and test you on topics and materials that are more academic than what you’d need to know in your daily life, you may want to use some TOPIK-specific materials during your preparation for the test, even if you are already attending a Korean class.

You can study the old examinations(and their answers) here. This book for TOPIK I and this book for TOPIK II are some of the most comprehensive books with great content that you can find. In addition to books and a good TOPIK guide, you may want to listen to the Korean language as much as possible through as many different options possible, from dramas to news to prepare for the test.

Should you take TOPIK?

It is up to you and your goals whether you want to take TOPIK! It is available for any Korean learner to take, even those living outside of Korea, to take. There are also multiple test dates to choose from, so the schedule is not an issue. More importantly, it’s also not that expensive. So what do you have to lose if you take it once, even if it’s just for once?

Why should you take TOPIK?

There are multiple reasons you should seriously consider taking TOPIK.

Firstly, a good TOPIK score may help you gain entry to study in a university in Korea. It may also exempt you from taking further language classes before starting your studies. Additionally, once you are in university in South Korea, it is often mandatory to take the TOPIK before graduating.

Additionally, a certificate and a good score from TOPIK will also help you find a job in good Korean companies Korea. And it will also give you points when you apply for a residency visa!

When should you take TOPIK?

If you want to be serious about taking this proficiency test in Korean, you might want to wait until it is time to take it. The test can be pretty difficult and stressful, especially the listening portion. Perhaps you may not want to study hard for it to test yourself.

Now that you know what kind of a test TOPIK is, do you have a schedule to take it? Have you already tried taking TOPIK before, and were you glad about the score you received? If you will take TOPIK soon, what is your motivation to take it? Let us know in the comments!

The post TOPIK – What You Need To Know About this Korean Test appeared first on 90 Day Korean®.

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buying a business

Koreabridge - Sun, 2021-10-24 20:20


I am looking to buy a business or invest in one. 

open to start up ideas or investing inan  established business


If you know of any English language schools for sale please get in touch.

open to bars, restaurants too. 


thank you



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Prediction: When do you think masks will no longer be required indoors? (in Korea)

Koreabridge - Sun, 2021-10-24 14:41
Choices End of 2021 Spring 2022 Summer 2022 Fall 2022 2023 or later Details: 
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