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Moving Seon

About Golgulsa

Sunmudo Headquarters, Golgulsa

Golgulsa in Painting


Golgulsa Temple by the painter Jeongseon during Joseon Dynasty


Golgulsa temple, located 20km from the East sea and nearby Kirimsa temple in Gyeongju city, has the longest history of Buddhism in the area of Mt. Hamwol.

During the 6th century, when Buddhism culture was flourishing with the Silla Dynasty, the Buddhist monk named Gwangyu and his followers from India made a rock-carved Buddha and twelve stone cave shrines which they used as Buddha halls, dormitories. It is the only stone cave temple in Korea.


In the past, local peoples used to visit and pray at Golgulsa temple. But as the transport accessibility became more complicated, peoples stopped coming over.

Sunmudo Grand master Jeog Un, who was the head monk of Kirimsa temple at that time, came to Golgulsa and became its head monk, then establishing new buildings in the temple compound since 1990 and making Golgulsa temple as it is today.

Originally, Golgulsa temple was a small hermitage named Golguram, that belonged to another sect.

Becoming the head monk of Golgulsa temple, Sunmudo Grand master Jeog Un registered it as one of the 11th regional district temples of the Jogye Order.

Golgulsa temple is the headquarters of Sunmudo, the traditional zen martial art, handed down from the Buddhist master Yangik’s Bulgyo-geumgang-younggwan. Here are also located the office of The World Sunmudo Federation and the Sunmudo


The Buddha statue, Maeyeoraebul in Golgulsa temple

​The front of the Buddha statue, Maeyeoraebul and stone cave temples


A stone cave around the Buddha statue, Maeyeoraebul


A stone cave around the Buddha statue, Maeyeoraebul

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