Category Archives: Korean Sŏn

Chinul on Pure Land

Chinul found the Pure Land practice of his time to be embraceable, provided that it was based upon one’s “own Buddha-mind”. Chinul followed Sŏn Master Yen-shou’s admonition, “If the mind is known, then one is born in the mind-only pure … Continue reading

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Hwadu

Chinul’s last “great awakening” occurred at Sangmuju am, near the top of the Mount Chiri—here, [suddenly] he was taken by reading Ta-hui Tsung-kao’s rendering of the hua-t’ou (K. hwadu) method: I went to live on Mount Chiri and found [a … Continue reading

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Universal Brightness

Universal Brightness Chinul’s “second-awakening” involved his fusion with Hwaŏm (Hua-yen Buddhism): I had always had doubts about the approach to entering into awakening in the Hwaŏm teachings: what, finally, did it involve? Accordingly, I decided to question a [Hwaŏm] lecturer. He replied, … Continue reading

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Samādhi and Prajñā

The key to Chinul’s variety of Sŏn Buddhism revolves around three distinct styles of practice that was directly influenced through “three enlightenment experiences.” Firstly, there is the balanced equation of samādhi and prajñā–all derived from a transformative experience involving the … Continue reading

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Coming in March 2016: Korean Sŏn

Sŏn is the Korean pronunciation of the Sanskrit, Dhyāna. Sŏn is also comparable with samādhi although it takes on a different connotation from our usual rendering. Tsung-mi expounds that it is a comprehensive equation for both samādhi and prajña. Sŏn’s … Continue reading

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