Jogyesa temple is the center of Zen Buddhism in Korea. If you’re in Seoul and you want to experience some activities of Buddhism, this is the place to go.
It’s my second time to visit this place. I went here last Autumn when they have some floral exhibitions. However, this Spring the temple is filled with lanterns.
These statues are located at the entrance of the temple. Some people bow down when they see these statues. Maybe it’s a part of their rituals. I think these are the Catholic version of their saints.
When I was young, my Catholic grandmother asked me to come with her to church. I noticed two things. First, she dipped her finger in the holy water and made the sign of the cross. Second, she used her handkerchief to wipe some statues of the saints.
When I arrived there, I notice that there are two water bottles near this Buddha. Before I leave the place, it became six bottles. I think these bottles of water are part of their offerings.
I didn’t enter the temple. I’m not a Buddhist so I think I’m unworthy. LOL. In the picture you can see a lady wearing a Korean traditional dress. I think I saw several women wearing a hanbok that day. Those women who are wearing hanbok is assigned to help in a certain activity.
Bathing of Buddha
I tried one activity. It’s called “Bathing of Buddha”. In this activity, a laddle is used to bathe the Buddha. You have to pour water over the small Buddha statue 3 times.
While pouring water say:
1st wash: “May I eliminate all evil thoughts”
2nd wash: “May I cultivate good deeds”
3rd: “May I help save all living beings”
My visit to the temple is pleasant. I’ve seen the colorful lanterns around the temple. I’ve also watched their lantern festival after few days. I will write another post about the lotus lantern festival.
How to go there:
Take Seoul Subway Line 3 to Anguk Station (Exit 6)
Walk for 140 meters and turn left at Ujeongguk-ro, after Insadong-gil.
Continue walking for 190 meters to reach the Jogyesa temple on the left.