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Watching World Cup or Contemplation

Posted June. 05, 2002 12:29,   


There was a small dispute at Haein Temple, the biggest Korean Buddhist Chogye Order temple located in Hapchon, Kyungnam Province, on June 4th. The temple has been in a period of three-month summer contemplation since May 26th. Some 1800 monks from nationwide participated in the contemplation to devote themselves to self-discipline.

But the temple allowed them to watch Korean team`s first match with Poland on TV at 8:30 p.m. on June 4th. But the news made senior monks angry. One of senior monks Won Chul said, "There has not been an official discussion about whether to allow summer contemplation participants to watch World Cup Games on TV, but there has been an exchange of many opinions. And the conclusion is that watching TV during the contemplation period, even though the World Cup is a national event, would not be a good idea."

However, Haein Temple decided to let participating monks watch TV individually at a temple office or library. This laughable happening all started with a high fever over football games among monks. The temple holds an annual soccer game on a playground within the temple.

Jeong-Hoon Kang gskim@donga.com