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Wooden Amitabha Buddha Triad and Excavated Relics of Wondangam Hermitage, Haeinsa Temple, Hapcheon

합천 해인사 원당암 목조아미타여래삼존상 및 복장유물 ( 陜川 海印寺 願堂庵 木造阿彌陀如來三尊像 및 腹藏遺物 )

Heritage Search Detail
Classification Treasure
Name of Cultural Properties Wooden Amitabha Buddha Triad and Excavated Relics of Wondangam Hermitage, Haeinsa Temple, Hapcheon
Quantity 3 statues, 23 wardrobe items
Designated Date 2020.08.27
Age Joseon Period
Address Hapcheon-gun, Gyeongsangnam-do

The national Treasure No. 2072, Wooden Amitabha Buddha Triad and Excavated Relics of Wondangam Hermitage, Haeinsa Temple, Hapcheon, is a statue of Buddha Triad enshrined in Bogwangjeon Hall, Wondangam Hermitage, which is an affiliated Hermitage of Haeinsa Temple. Along with the statue, 23 pieces of 8 cases of excavated relics are also designated as National Treasure.
The Wooden Amitabha Buddha Triad in Wondangam Hermitage consists of Amitabha Buddha with a hand gesture meaning the deliverance of Buddhist sermon, Avalokitesvara (Bodhisattva of Infinite Compassion) wearing jeweled crown with the shape of metamorphosed Buddha engraved, and Ksitigarbha (Bodhisattva of Suffering) wearing nothing on its head at each side. It accurately depicts the image of Amitabha Buddha Triad. The triad image like this emerged toward the late Goryeo Period and lasted until the late Joseon Dynasty Period. Having a triad made in the Goryeo or Joseon Dynasty Period enshrined in the Main Hall of a temple is a rare occurrence. Other rare examples include Seated Amitabha Buddha Triad in Amitabha Buddha Hall, Muwisa Temple in Gangjin, and Clay Amitabha Buddha Triad, Sinansa Temple in Geumsan.
The date when the Wooden Amitabha Buddha Triad Statue in Wondangam Hermitage was made is believed to be around the late 15th century for these reasons as follows: the patterns of the statue, the letter of prayer found inside the statue, the remodeling of Haeinsa Temple in about 1490 under the patronage of the royal family, and the remodeling of Wondangam Hermitage in 1495.
Records found inside the statue evidence the royal family’s patronage in the construction of seated Vairocana Buddha Statues in Beopbojeon Hall and The Great Light Hall of Haeinsa. Thus, the Wooden Amitabha Buddha Triad Statue is also likely to have been constructed under their patronage.
The faces of the main Buddha and attendant Bodhisattvas are round. Their facial features are portrayed in detail and vividly. They all depict dignified and warm facial expressions. Thus, it appears that they were all made by the same artist. The lotus pedestal displaying both upward facing lotus flowers and downward facing lotus flowers marks the influence of Tibet Buddhism of the Ming Dynasty in China, which reveals active exchange with Chinese Buddhism. The lapel wrinkles flowing down as if in a fluttering motion and the robe draped realistically on the contours of the body show that they are associated in forms with those made for prayers in the mid-to late-15th century with the support of the royal family including the Wooden Seated Amitabha Buddha Statue at Heukseoksa Temple in Yeongju (National Treasure No. 282/1458) and the Seated wooden statue of Manjusri Bodhisattva at Sangwonsa Temple in Pyeongchang (National Treasure No. 221/1466).
The Wooden Amitabha Buddha Triad Statue depicts the Amitabha Buddha Triad consisting of Amitabha Buddha flanked by Avalokitesvara and Ksitigarbha Bodhisattvas, which emerged in the late Goryeo Period. It displays features and patterns of Buddha statues specific to those made in the 15th century (the early Joseon Dynasty period), Thus, it is a valuable relic for the study of the history of Buddhist sculptures of that period. It has remained on the same site since its original enshrinement. Records found inside provide information on how and why it was made and who was the benefactor of its construction. It is widely regarded that the triad and the relics found inside of it have valuable deserving to be a National Treasure to be preserved.