Haedong Yonggung temple was fashioned by the great monk Naong, a consultant of King Gongmin during the mid-to-late 14th century. During this time, many crops caught fire as a result of a severe draught, and famine swept across the land. In a dream, a sea god told Naong that if a temple was built at the edge of the mountain, and if prayer was lifted up, happiness would return to the people.
The temple’s founder chose a place with a mountain in front and the sea at its back; the perfect spot for a temple. He named it Bomun. Unfortunately it was destroyed by Japanese invaders many years later, but was rebuilt in the early 1930’s. Finally during a 100-day prayer session, a monk named Jungam had a vision where the Great Goddess Buddha was dressed in a white robe on the back of a dragon visited the temple. He awoke and renamed it Haedong Yonggungsa., meaning East Sea – Dragon Palace Temple.
Haedong Yonggungsa is a rarity in that it is one of the few (if not only) temples in South Korea that is situated on a cliff near the sea. It’s motto is, “At least one of your wishes will be answered here through your heartful prayers.”
To endure is to pray without ceasing until your natural eyes see what your spiritual eyes have seen all along.
– 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18