Across the wide yard, there was a grand architecture. The building in the middle of the temple is Daewoongjeon. The name of Yeongwhasa temple may seem old, but the buildings are not very old. It had been destroyed several times up until now. When the temple was newly built, it was named after a temple that existed more than 1,300 years ago. Even if the temple's history was 1,300 years old, there was no artifact to show 1,300 years of history.
What made people think Daewoongjeon Hall was only recently built was a dragon sculpture of the staircase in the middle. Only monks can walk through the middle steps. Ordinary people should use the left and right stairs to enter Daewoongjeon. There are three treasures in Buddhism. The three are Buddha, Buddha's teachings and monks. Monks are therefore given special treatment.
The piece of a dragon decorating the stairs was splendid. The stone was sharpened as if it were woodcut. You can make fine sculptures because you use a machine to make sculptures. It's well-coordinated but doesn't feel artistic. Maybe it’s because the sculpture had not been carved by people's hands.
When I see a rough piece of stone in an old temple, I feel deep in my heart. But like a dragon sculpture in Daewoongjeon, a well-crafted sculpture using a modern machine is not very touching.
The garden on the front wall of Daewoongjeon's basic section was better than the dragon sculpture. The ivy and pine trees mingled.
On the first floor of Daewoongjeon Hall, there was Jijangjeon. Originally, Jijangjeon Hall is built separately from other buildings. But in Yeongwhasa temple, JiJangjeon was beneath Daewoongjeon Hall. The place that entered the Jjiangjeon was like a cave. It seemed plausible that there was a "JiJangjeon" symbolizing hell at the bottom of the Great Hall of the Fallen. Jijangjeon is on the first floor, but it was like a basement floor.
When I went in and opened the door, only a twig in the middle lit up the light. In the dark, only the dimples looked bright. The dramatic contrast of darkness and brightness seemed to make clear the meaning of the Jijang Bodhisattva, which saves the souls of the Mesozoic in Hell. The back wall of Jijiang Bodhisattva was densely lined with white paper. It was the name of the dead.
It was the best jijangjeon I've ever seen.