Thursday, June 19, 2014

There's a Tiger out the Window!

Lattice windows on Bongwonsa Temple in Seoul
I love visiting the Buddhist temples in Korea. Even the newer ones have beautifully painted beams and wooden lattice windows with carved nature scenes. The tiger is a popular motif in Korean culture and is seen as a symbol of courage and power. Cranes, seen in the panel next to the right tiger one, are a symbol of longevity. Roosters are a symbol of intelligence and trust, and carp are associated with reproduction. The lotus flower is a revered symbol of creation and prosperity, while chrysanthemums signify elegance. Bamboo signifies fidelity and the pine tree is associated with longevity.

Even more symbols can be found on the walls of the Buddhist temples. I'd love to have someone explain about their many stories and meanings.

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