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Yeonggwang, June 2018

Doraeji Temple


The Doraeji temple (도래지 [doraechi]) is a Buddhist temple in the Supjengi Park (숲쟁지공원 [supchaengi]).

It is said that this temple is the first built during the Paekje dynasty (백재 - 18 BCE ~ 660 CE). It commemorates the Indian monk Mālānanda, who first introduced Buddhism to this part of Korea somewhere in 384 CE. 

Doraej Temple Supjengi Park
Doraeji Temple Supjengi Park
Buddha's footprint Doraeji temple Supjengi park
Malananda Doraeji Temple Supjengi Park

There is a monument of Mālānanda erected at the top of the hill, right behind the temple itself. Unfortunately, on my trip there were renovations going on, so I did not have the chance to see it up close. 

Doraeji Temple Supjengi Park

According to historical records, Mālānanda was part of the Eastern Jin dynasty of China. He was most likely sent to Paekje as part of an official mission to King Ch'imnyu (침류왕). He established the first Buddhist monastry in Wiryesŏng (위례성), the capital of Paekje, which resided in what now would be Seoul.

Buddha Doraeji Temple Supjaegi park
Buddha Doraeji Temple Supjaegi park
Buddha Doraeji Temple Supjaegi park
stone stacking Doraeji Temple Supjaegi park

Surrounding the temple, there were many small stacks of stones. This rock stacking is common sight around temples and hiking trails. It is said that if you are able to stack a  rock on top of a stack without it tipping over, your wish will come true. 

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