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Shrine of the Three Sages (삼성각)

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Writer Jogye Date23 Jul 2015 Read1,991 Comment0

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Shrine of the Three Sages (Samseong-gak)

삼성각

The three sages are the Big Dipper God (Chilseong), the Hermit Sage (Dokseong), and the Mountain God (Sansin). There will often be a hall dedicated to each figure. All three of these were prominent deities from the Korean folk religion that were adopted by Buddhism.

The Big Dipper God originated in Daoism. People would pray to the Big Dipper God for their children to live long.

The Hermit Sage is an arhat, who is said to have attained enlightenment on Tiantai Mountain in China. In Korean Buddhism, he is considered to be a sage who benefits others. He is depicted in Buddhist paintings as an old man with a white beard and long eyebrows.

The Mountain God was an influential figure in ancient Korea because of the mountainous terrain. The Mountain God receives particular recognition in an attempt to appease the local mountain spirits, on whose land the temple stands. The Mountain God is commonly depicted with a tiger.

 

- excerpt from Buddhist English (Elementary 1) published in 2014 by the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism 

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