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불갑사는 호남의 명찰로 삼국시대 백제에 불교를 처음 전래한 인도의 마라난타 존자가 남중국 동진을 거쳐 백제 침류왕 1년에 법성포로 들어와 모악산에 최초로 사찰을 창건하였는데 이 절이 제불사의 시원이요 으뜸이 된다고 하여 불갑사라고 이름지었다고 한다.

이러한 사실은 옛 백제지역의 고찰(古刹)을 대부분이 백제가 멸망되면서 백제서기가 유실되어 그 창건역사를 고증할 수 없는 것처럼 완벽한 고증은 현재로서는 어렵지만, 불갑사 고적기(古蹟記)에서 불갑사의 최초 창건을 "羅濟之始 漢魏之間"이라고 하여 불갑사가 백제초기에 창건된 사찰이라고 기록하고 있는 점과, 이 지역에 전해내려오는 구전(口傳)과 지명(地名), 사명(寺名), 그리고 마란난타존자의 행적을 살펴봄으로서 어느 정도의 확신은 가능하다

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Copyright: Lee Byong Soon(이병순)
Type: Spherical
Resolution: 8000x4000
Taken: 19/09/2012
Uploaded: 28/09/2012
Updated: 19/04/2018


Tags: 전라남도; 영광군; 사찰; 불갑사; 마라난타; 백제최초불교; 꽃무릇
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More About Korea

Korea is one of the oldest continuous civilizations in the world with over five thousand years of history. According to the original creation myth, the world we live in today is the work of the Heavenly Prince Hwanung, whose father was the King of Heaven.The Heavenly Prince asked his father to give him some land to govern, so the Father sent him down to Mount Taebaek. With him the Prince brought the Minister of Clouds, the Earl of Rain and the Chancellor of Wind. They also brought three thousand helpers.Under the shade of a sandalwood tree the Prince founded a holy city called Sinsi, the City of God. He put his Ministers in charge of three hundred and sixty areas of human culture, teaching them to grow crops and to make laws concerning what is good and what is evil.A tiger and a bear living in a nearby cave saw this city and desperately wanted to become human. Every day they came to the sandalwood tree at the center of the city to pray fervently for becoming humans.Hwanung saw their devotion and gave them instructions to remain in the cave and fast for one month, eating nothing but garlic and mugwort. The tiger was too impatient to stand the long and boring days in the cave, so he gave up and left, but Bear maintained the fast. At the end of the month she was transformed into a beautiful woman who became the mother of the Korean people.Her first son was Don-gun, the First King of the Korean people. When Don-Gun passed on the throne to his own son, he became a Mountain God. It is interesting that mountain gods are still worshipped today in Korea.Text by Steve Smith.