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English | The New Year’s Greeting Message

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Author Jogye On15-12-30 17:43 Views18,209 Comments0



The New Year’s Greeting Message


The Year of Byeongsin* is dawning bright. All monastic in the Jogye Order prays for every Korean to realize what you have hoped in a smooth and harmonious manner in the New Year 2016. We also wish that you would stay hopeful with good laughter throughout the year, by receiving the energy of monkeys which give pleasure to people with their smartness and agility.


We Koreans could see our potential strength and power while having successfully overcome the turbulent years for the past 70 years in the modern time since the national independence in 1945. However, we are still facing national division, social conflict and economic polarization, to list a few. We should earnestly look back ourselves to see if we have been using our mind in a more dividing and discriminating way, which consequently have beclouded our eyes of wisdom.

Jeuksimsibul. It means that this mind itself is the Buddha. Just like this Buddha’s teaching, if you change your perspective, you would realize that there is no difference between you and I, attain a state of happiness and well-being here and now, and open up the world of peaceful coexistence. In 1236 (Year of Byeongsin), our ancestors began making the Eighty Thousand Tripitaka Koreana in order to save the nation and integrate the people in a great crisis. The Jogye Order hopes that the year 2016 would be another historical one that marks our efforts of overcoming the crisis we face today.  

We have to make the New Year as the year of intelligence, smartness and prudence. Let’s reduce the social discord and instead plant a seed of harmony for the inter-Korean reconciliation by practicing a pure and lucid mind starting at an individual level. To those who will be elected next year’s general election, I hope you remember presenting a future-oriented vision to which the public agrees is the only way we could all walk together on the path of peaceful coexistence.

Let’s greet the New Year with a bright mind and beautiful smile. May you be always blessed by continuously practicing virtuous deeds and generous mind.

Happy New Year!


The Buddhist Era 2560 (The Year 2016)
Ven. Jaseung, the President of Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism

* Note on “Year of Byeongsin”
Korea uses both solar calendar and Chinese calendar. The Chinese calendar uses the combination of two syllables to name the years and has the 60-year cycle within it. The first syllable refers to the number from 1 to 10. The second syllable refers to the 12 animal guardians originated from Buddhism. Under this principle, the year 2016’s name is “Byeongsin” in which “Byeong” means the third and “sin” means the monkey, the nineth guardian. Thus, it is also called as “Year of Monkey.”


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