As a person who knows very little about buddhism and how it’s practiced, I decided it was time to educate myself. I went to a temple stay experience last weekend with my friends at the 백련사 (Baengnyeon Temple). We were very excited to learn more about buddhism but the thing that got us really nervous was whether we’d survive with the vegetarian food or not 😀
We arrived to the Cheongpyeong Station around 2:30 PM, a little later than originally scheduled. Our guide was there happily waiting for us with his van. After arriving to the temple our guide showed us to our rooms and gave us some free time before the orientation meeting at 4:20 PM. (blaze it)
At the orientation meeting the guide went through the schedule with us and then took us to the ceremony hall where he explained to us more about buddhism and different ceremonies that they do. We also learned how to do the bow correctly.
After that came the part that we were all very excited for. Dinner. It wasn’t as bad as we initially thought and to our pleasant surprise they had potatoes. Oh god I’ve been missing potatoes the whole time I’ve been here in Korea.
With our bellies filled we had the energy to attend the evening ceremony and do the 108 bows afterwards. After all the bowing we moved to the hall where we first had to orientation. There we were given crayons and some cool pictures to colour. Childhood all over again. After colouring the pictures we sat in a big circle drinking tea, eating cake, and talking about our feelings. Good times.
The next morning we woke up for the morning ceremony at 5 AM, followed by breakfast. After breakfast we should’ve done some cleaning according to the schedule but we just went back to our rooms and got a few hours worth of zzz’s in. We woke up again around 9:30~ for a small tracking session, and to make some beads for souvenirs. We departed from the temple around 12 and headed towards Chuncheon, which I will talk more about in the next post 🙂