The project to excavate and restore Yeongtongsa Temple in Gaeseong

We have supported the excavation and restoration of Yeongtongsa Temple in Gaeseong.

North Korea has restored 29 types of seal engraving until October 2005 starting the restoration projects with Chontae Order of Korean Buddhism on November 2002.

'Share the World' has arranged the projects to restore North Korean temples. It has led the project to restore temples related to Tiantai Buddhism in North Korea and supported the excavation and restoration of Yeongtongsa Temple in Gaeseong for the first time.

Yeongtongsa Temple is told to be from Taejo Wang Geon, the founder of the Goryeo Dynasty, who named the small temple stayed by his great-grandfather next year Seungbokwon and expanded the building in 918. And Monk Eicheon (1055 to 1101), the State Preceptor Daegak, who started Tiantai Buddhism became a Buddhist by making Nanwon (爛圓) in Gyeongdeokguksa Temple (景德國師) his teacher when he was 11 years old. And he annotated Tinatai while he was studying in China. It is Bodhi-mandala with the stone monument of Monk Eicheon, the State Preceptor Daegak.

We tried to restore Yeongtongsa Temple first because it can be called the main temple (宗刹) of Korean Tiantai Buddhism.

The main ceremony of the joint order of an assembly for worship or preaching of South Korea and North Korea was held in Yeongtongsa Temple on May 2004. And it supported roof tiles, heavy equipment, and finishing building materials to be used in the restoration of Yeongtongsa Temple in earnest. And finally the celebration of the completion of the restoration of Yeongtongsa Temple was held on October 31, 2005.

As it became a mental place to rest for Tiantai Buddhists and spread Tiantai Buddhism to North Korean residents, it formed a opportunity for recovering homogeneity of the Korean race. Actually, the restoration of the main temple of Tiantai Buddhism which had been ruined for hundreds of years can be evaluation to be the historic event that introduced rebuilding of Tiantai Buddhism to the world.

We try to support active cooperation about this project to prepare the foundation of the cultural exchange projects that will continue to be developed.