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Jogye Order Head Ven. Jaseung Holds New Year Press Conference
“Korean Buddhism will work together with society through cooperation and communication.”
The 33rd Jogye Order Director of Administration Ven. Jaseung presented plans for the New Year at a press conference on January 12 at the Jogye Order Administration Building. He said that he wanted to build a Korean Buddhism that works together with society through cooperation and communication. He presented three great missions, 11 essential subjects, and 25 main topics.
Ven. Jaseung said, “The crisis of our civilization can be resolved by the Buddha’s teachings of compassion and wisdom, which sees the whole world as one and everything as equal. Thus we must respect one another and live together in harmony.”
The three great missions are to strengthen meditative practice, revive Buddhism through education and Dharma propagation, and implement cooperation and communication in society.
Ven. Jaseung said, “Taking the brilliant 2600 year-old Buddhist practice lineage and 1700 year-old Korean practice tradition as the basis, I will focus on setting up the Jogye Order monastic welfare program (to take care of elderly monastics) so that monastics (in their youth) can focus entirely on practice and Dharma propagation. In addition, I will make continuous efforts in developing a standard practice system and providing ways to promote practice to the general public.
With regard to education and dharma propagation, Ven.. Jaseung said, “I will strongly pursue monastic training, which will engender compassion and meet societal and historical needs. For this, we will create a Monastic Training Improvement Committee.”
Ven. Jaseung continues, “For Korean Buddhism to have better communication and cooperation with society, and to resolve social conflicts, we plan to operate a Hwajaeng Committee. This committee will focus on resolving social conflicts and differences (e.g. progressive and conservative, north and south, government and NGOs) through the attitude of the Buddha’s compassion and wisdom. For better communication within the order, we will create a Committee for the Development of the Order. For the revival of Buddhism and better communication, we plan to develop a network, which includes Buddhists from all the different fields and classes.
Here are the 11 essential subjects: to promote Korean Buddhism internationally, improve the networking of international dharma instructors; improve monastic training to meet social needs; improve the organization and education of the laity; design a standard practice system and then popularize it; promote interreligious cooperation; Hwajaeng Committee to resolve social conflicts; Monastic Welfare Program for practice and dharma propagation; development and application of Buddhist culture; preserve the Jogyesa Temple vicinity as a traditional cultural area; improve the entrance fee system for national parks and cultural heritage sites; and the rationalization of the order’s financial structure.
Ven. Jaseung said, “The 33rd Jogye Order administration will go forward vigorously to bring about cooperation and communication with society at large. At the end of my four-year term, Korean Buddhism will have resolved social conflicts through cooperation and communication. We will create a new answer for the current crisis in human civilization through education and dharma propagation that is appropriate to the modern era.”