Sunday Photo; Juwangsan

Today, we travel east to a small mountain, Juwangsan, which has a folk-lore link to the great Chinese epic, Journey to the West.

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6 thoughts on “Sunday Photo; Juwangsan”

  1. In the story, Sun Wukong, the out-of-control Monkey King, is wreaking havoc on the Jade Palace. As a last resort, they requested the Buddha for help. The Buddha came to Sun Wukong and made a bet with him that Sun Wukong would not be able to escape the Buddha’s own palm. Knowing that he could cover 108,000 li in one leap, Sun Wukong smugly agreed. In a single, great leap, he crossed to the end of the world in a moment. All that could be seen were five pillars, and Wukong surmised that he had reached the ends of Heaven. To prove his feat, he tagged the pillars with a phrase declaring himself, “The Great Sage equal to Heaven” and then urinated on the small pillar at the far end. Upon leaping back to the Buddha’s hand to gloat, he realized that those five pillars were actually the Buddha’s fingers and, indeed, he hadn’t ever left the Buddha’s palm (the Buddha had his graffitied finger, and a pungent odor on his pinky to prove it.) When he began attempting to talk his way out of the bet, the Buddha closed his fingers around Sun Wukong, and turned in his fist into a stone mountain, imprisoning the Monkey King there for five-hundred years.

    If you were to travel to Juwangsan today, at the entrance to the park, just across from the ticket booth, is a small temple, unnoteworthy except for the peculiar granite peak that rises up behind it. And if you were to travel to Juwangsan on just the right day, and look up at this peak, someone just might be there to tell you that this peak is actually the Buddha’s hand that held Sun Wukong for five-hundred years.

  2. Love it! (Especially the detail about the smelly finger!) Thank you so much Joseph! You know, I’ve started really looking forward to ‘Sunday Photo’ every week! Nice one! Thank you!

  3. {imprisoning the Monkey King there for five-hundred years}

    So where did he go after his sentence was up? :^)

    I too look forward to the Sunday pics, and the stories behind them.

    1. Where did he go??
      On the great Journey to the West! ^^
      The conditions of his release were to escort a monk who was traveling to India to bring back some Buddhist scriptures. Sun Wukong was not free until the monk returned safely.

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