Head-Shaving Rock of Magoksa Temple

8. Head-Shaving Rock of Magoksa Temple

[Man]
The Head-Shaving Rock of Magoksa Temple is located on the first course, called Baekbeom Mediation Trail, among the Pine Tree Trails of Magoksa Temple. If you follow the side road from Daeungbojeon Hall of Magoksa Temple, you will find the Head-Shaving Rock.

[Woman]
Baekbeom killed a Japanese lieutenant in Chihapo of Anak-gun in Hwanghae-do in 1896. He was arrested for the incident and transferred to Incheon Prison, and his death penalty was finalized in 1897, the following year. His execution was suspended due to a special pardon by Emperor Gojong immediately before the scheduled date, but as he was not released, Baekbeom escaped from the prison in the following spring.

During his travels across the three southern provinces of Jeolla, Gyeongsang, and Chungcheong looking for a place to seek refuge, Baekbeom entered Magoksa Temple in Gongju. In 1898, while lying low in Magoksa Temple, he began to serve with a Buddhist monk Haeundang as his teacher, and he subsequently joined the monastic order and received Wonjong as his precept name.


[Haeundang]
“Wonjong. Tomorrow, you will be renouncing the secular life and joining the monastic order. As the first step, you will have to shave your head. Do you feel you are ready?”

[Baekbeom Kim Gu]
“Yes, master!” I am ready.

[Haeundang]
"Take a good rest today, and I'll see you tomorrow at the Head-Shaving Rock."

[Woman]
Baekbeom Journal, written by Baekbeom, contains a record of him becoming a monk.

[Baekbeom Kim Gu]
The priest, Hodeoksam, brought a hair-cutting knife. We went out to the edge of a stream, and as he read the mantra for shaving head, my topknot fell onto the sand. Although I had already made up my mind, tears fell down along with my hair.

[Woman]
Baekbeom was born as a descendant of a fallen noble family. He participated in the Donghak Peasant Revolution and once served as a Buddhist monk. His first name is Changam, and his pen name is Baekbeom.

[Independence Activist]
"Excuse me, sir, how should I address you? I can't call you by name, so could you give me your pen name?"

[Baekbeom Kim Gu]
"My pen name is Baekbeom. It is a combination of Baek, meaning humble people, and Beom, meaning ordinary people. You can call me Baekbeom.”

[Liberation Activist]
“Ah, alright. Baek... beom... Mr. Baekbeom!”

[Baekbeom Kim Gu]
“Your tea is getting cold. Please drink.”

[Woman]
Baekbeom did many things for his country. He taught as an educator, was arrested by the Japanese police during the Enlightenment Movement, and participated in the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea in Shanghai, China after 1919. He subsequently became the President of the Provisional Government.

Baekbeom lived a life marked by a series of struggles, imprisonment, and exile, but he had a clear goal of achieving a liberated and united homeland. As Baekbeom strove for that goal, the generations to come still remember and evaluate him.

The Head-Shaving Rock in Magoksa Temple has remained untouched at the same location since Baekbeom’s renunciation of the secular life. Magoksa Temple and Gongju City Hall built a bridge connecting the Head-Shaving Rock and Magokcheon Stream, which is called Baekbeomgyo Bridge.

@Registered by : KOREA TOURISM ORGANIZATION

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