The historical of Haedong Yonggung temple> The historical of Haedong Yonggung temple
The motto of Haedong Yonggung temple is "At least one of your wishes will be answered here through your heartful prayers." The sea has been with human-being in history from long time ago. It was very calm sometimes while furious sometimes. The Haedong Yonggung temple is situated near the sea unlike other temples located in mountains, therefore it's quite reasonable to call this temple an aquatic Buddhist sanctum.
They say that the Great Goddess Buddha of mercy in the sea lives alone at a solitary near the sea and appears on the back of a dragon. That's why the Korean's worship of the Great Goddess Buddha was formed near the sea or on the island, and this Haedong Yonggung temple is one of 3 Sacred Places related to the Goddess Buddha. This temple preserves religious concept deeper than that of any other temple ever as the sea, dragon and the Great Goddess Buddha embody a harmony here.
Haedong Yonggung temple, the southern most temple near the east sea was founded by the great monk Naong, who was the consultant of King Gongmin. While he was practicing asceticism at Bunhwang temple in Gyeongju, the nation was hard hit by a draught that made the crops burn to death and people suffer from famine, so people were disturbed badly resenting the god for not giving them rain. One day, a sea god appeared in Naong' dream and said that if they built a temple at the edge of Bongrae mountain and prayed there, all these hardship would go away leaving people back in happiness. After that dream, Naong visited the area where the Haedong Yonggung temple is located now, and saw that there was a mountain in the front and the sea at the back, which means if they say prayers in the morning they get answered in the evening. He built a temple later called Bomun temple by him and named the mountain Bongrae. The word “Bongrae” means something mysterious and pure to which hermits with great understanding descended. The word “Bomun” means the absolute and limitless power of the Great Goddess Buddha of mercy, called Gwanseumbosal in Korean.
Unfortunately the temple was destroyed by fire when the Japanese invaded Korea and the monk Ungang of Tongdo temple rebuilt the temple in the early 1930's. Since then many head monks managed the temple until the monk Jungam prayed that the temple recovered as the Great Goddess Buddha's seminary. Amidst his 100-day pray session he witnessed the Great Goddess Buddha in white robe on the back of a dragon emanating five-color beam and after the dream he renamed the temple Haedong Yonggung temple.
They believe that at least on of their wishes will be answered if they pray here and because of that belief many people visit this temple.