[KS] pilgrimage

Kirsten Bell Kirsten.Bell at jcu.edu.au
Mon Mar 6 07:32:02 EST 2000


Sorry to clog up the discussion list with another
request.  Unfortunately, my access to Korean studies
resources is extremely limited (the nearest library
with comprehensive KS resources is over a thousand miles
away) and I am hoping a member of the list may be able
to help me out...

I have several queries relating to the topic of
pilgrimage, as I have been unable to find any
information regarding the phenomenon in Korea.

I am wondering about the history of pilgrimage
traditions in Korea.  I am particularly interested in
pilgrimage in the sense defined by Victor Turner - i.e.
the notion of a group experience focusing on the
facilitation of \"communitas\".  From my limited reading
of pre-Christian traditions in Korea, it seems that the
notion of pilgrimage in this Christian/Western sense,
was essentially alien to the country.  This may seem
fairly self-evident, but obviously this notion of group
pilgrimage does exist in other non-Western traditions
such as Hinduism.  I would really like to know if there
have been comparable pilgrimages in Korea.  As my
knowledge of Korean Buddhism, Shamanism and Confucianism
are all fairly rudimentary, I was wondering whether
formal, group pilgrimage to sacred sites has existed in
any of these traditions.  Many of the new religions such
as Ch\\\'ondogyo and Taejonggyo encourage these formal
group-oriented pilgrimages, but I would like to know
whether this represents the continuation of earlier
traditions, or is due to the influence of Christianity
(I suspect the latter).

I was also wondering about the term songji sullye.  Does
anyone know the origins of this word?  In Ch\'ondogyo 
the term is used to describe the sort of group-oriented
pilgrimage common to Christianity.  However, was the
term traditionally used in such a fashion?  Or did it
describe an individual, personal quest (or pilgrimage)
to a sacred site?

If anyone would be willing to shed some light on these
queries, I would appreciate it if you would contact me
personally on:
kirsten.bell at jcu.edu.au


Kirsty Bell
School of Anthropology, Archaeology & Sociology
James Cook University
Douglas, Qld 4811

This mail sent through IMP: http://web.horde.org/imp/


More information about the Koreanstudies mailing list