Korean Translation in Oxford – Segem Consulting | Korean Translators

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A Korean Translator Shows How to Wed in a Korean Style

by Dr. Han, Korean translator, Oxford Branch, Korean Translation Services by Segem Consulting

A Korean Translator Explains – An Overview of Korean Culture

by Dr. Han, Korean translator, Oxford Branch, Korean Translation Services by Segem Consulting

A Korean translator in our Korean translation office in Oxford gives a brief introduction to Korean culture in terms of its religion.

Unlike some cultures where a single religion is dominant, Korean culture includes a wide variety of religious elements that have shaped the people’s way of thinking and behavior. In the early stages of history in Korea, religious and political functions were combined but later became distinct.

Historically, Koreans lived under the influences of shamanism, Buddhism, Taoism or Confucianism, and in modern times, the Christian faith has made strong inroads into Korea, bringing forth yet another important factor that may change the spiritual landscape of the people. The rapid pace of industrialization which occurred within a couple of decades compared to a couple of centuries in the West, has brought about considerable anxiety and alienation while disrupting the peace of mind of Koreans, encouraging their pursuit of solace in religious activities. As a result, the population of religious believers has expanded markedly with religious institutions emerging as influential social organizations.

Our Korean translator in Oxford Korean translation branch thinks it is very important to know about Buddhism. Buddhism is a highly disciplined philosophical religion which emphasizes personal salvation through rebirth in an endless cycle of reincarnation. Buddhism was introduced into Korea in A.D. 372 during the Koguryeo Kingdom period by a monk named Sundo who came from Qian Qin Dynasty China. In 384, monk Malananda brought Buddhism to Baekje, which is our Korean translator’s transliteration, from the Eastern Jin State of China.

Under royal patronage, many temples and monasteries were constructed and believers grew steadily. By the sixth century monks and artisans were migrating to Japan with scriptures and religious artifacts to form the basis of early Buddhist culture there.

The rulers of the succeeding Koryeo (hence the name Korea, – this is our Korean translator’s transliteration) Dynasty were even more enthusiastic in their support of the religion. During Koryeo , Buddhist arts and architecture continued to flourish with unreserved support from the aristocracy. When Yi Seong-gye (This is our Korean translator’s transliteration who works in Oxford Korean translation branch of Segem Consulting), founder of the Choseon Dynasty, staged a revolt and had himself proclaimed king in 1392, he tried to remove all influences of Buddhism from the government and adopted Confucianism as the guiding principles for state management and moral decorum. Throughout the five-century reign of Choseon, any effort to revive Buddhism was met with strong opposition from Confucian scholars and officials.

The past few decades have seen Buddhism undergo a sort of renaissance involving efforts to adapt to the changes of modern society. While the majority of monks remain in mountainous areas, absorbed in self-discipline and meditation, some come down to the cities to spread their religion.

Freedom of religion is guaranteed by the Constitution in Korea. According to a 1995 social statistics survey, 50.7 percent of Koreans follow a specific religious faith. Buddhists account for some 46 percent followed by Protestants at 39 percent and Catholics at 13 percent of the religious population.

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