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Dawn Bell Chant (새벽종송)
The “dawn bell chant” is performed while sounding the bell at the early morning Buddhist ceremony. The dawn bell chant starts upon the end of Doryangseok (道場釋), a chanting ceremony to purify and awaken the temple compound. The dawn bell chant saves sentient beings from the suffering of hell and guides them to be reborn in the Pure Land. Listening to the chant (鍾頌), sentient beings awaken to the spiritual power of Amitabha Buddha and the splendor of the Pure Land, and then take refuge in the Buddhas and bodhisattvas. In terms of rhythm and tune, bell chants are a type of Beompae (梵唄), verses sung in praise of the Buddha and his teachings. Thus, bell chants are deemed important as they have characteristics of Korean traditional music.
May the sound of this bell spread throughout the universe,
Lift the thick darkness over the Great Iron Mountains,
Relieve the three realms of suffering and shatter the hell of swords,
And bring all sentient beings to perfect enlightenment.
- excerpt from Buddhist English (Intermediate 2) published in 2014 by the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism