Sanctuaries of Korea: Buddhist Monasteries in the Mountains
Since its introduction from China no later than the fourth century, Buddhism in Korea has developed into a unique tradition and cultural phenomenon. Hosting the residence of monastics as well as the various act of devotion and learning, monasteries are the centerpiece to observe both ancient and modern forms of Korean Buddhism. With ancient urban sites all went to ruins and due to the relative waning of Buddhism in the recent past centuries, the best examples of monasteries are now found in remote mountainous places scattered across the peninsula. In due recognition of outstanding importance of these monastic sites, UNESCO has registered seven of them in particular as a World Heritage Site in 2018. The talk introduces these seven "mountain monasteries" or "sansa 山寺", namely, Magoksa 麻谷寺, Pŏpchusa 法住寺, Pusŏksa 浮石寺, Pongjŏngsa 鳳停寺, Taehŭngsa 大興寺, Sŏnamsa 仙巖寺, and T'ongdosa 通度寺.
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