Seondo (pronounced sun) is Korea’s ten-thousand-year-old meditation culture. Before there was Buddhism and Confucianism in Korea, there was Seon. Despite its long history, it has not been popularly known to the outside world. The Korean word “Seon” is a combination of two charaters, humankind and mountain. The mountain symbolizes nature as well as the Universe, but it can also be said to represent everything. Do (pronounced Doh) means the road, the way, the path.
knowing the Universe and loving it
knowing Nature and loving it
knowing Humankind and loving it
In short, the goal is to attain peace by fully
knowing and loving humankind,
to preserve nature by knowing and loving it,
and to reclaim our divine nature by knowing
and loving the Universe.
Seon culture aims to pursue a community, by way of meditation and well-being living, where human beings, nature and the Universe coexist harmoniously. Seon culture aims to exist within society and not to isolate itself. It is far more valuable for civilization to pursue meditation training as a part of everyday living. Worrying about the correct direction of civilization furthers its development, like a lotus flower blossoming in a dirty pond.
Seon culture originated from ancient East Asia, and it was already a life culture of the people and a state ideology during the period of Gojoseon over 5,000 years ago. Gojoseon pursued a community to be one with humans, nature and the Universe through its ideology of Heaven-Earth-Humans. Seon culture was formed during the Gojoseon period and has been with the Korean people throughout history to the present.
Various ancient kingdoms attempted to make it practical for the people to understand the ideology. Seon developed well-being living through food, structures, natural philosophy, natural medicine and Fengshui thoughts based on yin/yang and the 5 elemental theory. Seon culture was withdrawn from the historical surface by Confucianism and Buddhsim from 900-1900s, and Seon’s way of meditation was transformed into a hidden mountain practice.
Also, its thoughts of the Universe and artistic life were absorbed and combined with Confucian ways of viewing the Universe, artistic life, making them indistinguishable for the general public. However, the general public’s concepts of food, shelter and clothing descended from Seon.