A Critical Reflection on the Chogye

Reflection on the Chogye

The Main Thesis of the Article

The history of religious civilization reckons to the evolution of religious practices in different part of the world.  He states the important of retaining the identity of the Kanhwa Son. He points out that there are different Buddhism practices in India, China, and South Korea. However, Senecal fails to understand that there are different cultural practices, and people might differ in one way or the other in the way they worship (76). This being so, the purpose and belief of Buddhists always remain undeterred among societies.

The Main Points of the Article

Senecal argues that the practice of Kanwha Son was purposely for enlightening it follower to the reality of the creator. According to him, Chinul only traversed Korea teaching people on how to read Dhuils Records (77). Chinul never envisioned about meditation as it is currently the practice in most of the countries that practice Buddhism. The idea of meditation came later after Chinul successor Chingak Hyesim took over the reign of religious leadership. The changes of Buddhism practice from reading Dahui’s Literature to meditation have no significant effect on the belief system. Senecal concerns are the outrageous and selfish enlightenment of an ancient exercise.

My Questions/Criticism     

The Chogye Order aim to “illuminate the world” with the new ways of worship characterized by Dahui Zongao belief is misplaced given that the changes that have occurred over time cannot just be forgotten overnight. Keyword Meditation is a radical exercise that will face hinges in Korea as well as China, India and in the Western world. Individuals cherish and value their history and ought not to wish that away to accommodate new practices. In fact, the Chogye Order came from China after Korean student learned and attained Dharma on Linji School. After their return, they embraced the ‘Sino-Korean Connection’ that embraced and thought about Kanwha Son. Therefore, the claim that Chogye Order emanated from Korean is untrue, and its practice is an embracement of a foreign idea.

Senecal says that Chogye Order’s campaign is a contest in crisis (88). Why does he call it a crisis? The launch of worldwide propagation of the Kanhwa Son is rife to the fact that it is experiencing national and international challenges. In the Korea, Kanhwa Son encounters internal and external challenges. Some members of the order are hesitant of the new awakening and thus are derailing the expansion of the group. Moreover, there are conflicting ideologies among members of the Chogye Order that make it so hard gain recognition from a majority of Buddhists. But, Chogye Order emerges as a consensus of like-minded Korean Buddhist with a vision to make their culture the point of reference from other smaller group in East Asian countries. Therefore, the point of challenges from within is a fallacy proposed by Senecal. Moreover, given that each country has its identity the Kanhwa Son cannot purport to influence or guide religion in the world. The facts that there is a book of reference make it hard for Chogye Order to threaten Christianity and other small religious belief in the Korea Peninsula.



Works Cited

Senecal, Bernard. A Critical Reflection on the Chogye Order’s Campaign for the Worldwide Propagation of Kanhwa. Journal of Korean Religions 2.1 (2011): 75-105. Print.