Thursday, October 3, 2013

Choe Kyung-Yo/first draft of a character sketch /Tue 3,4



There is a man. No. There was a man. He was a Buddhist monk. And he was a bestselling author at the same time. Many people, including me, have loved him and deeply respected him. He is Beop Jeong, the most respected and beloved Buddhist leader in Korea.


He was born in Haenam in 1932 which is famous for its nickname, "the end of the South Korea". His real name is Park JaeCheol. He, of course, was not a monk at first. When he was 20, The Korean War(1950~1953) broke out, which made him think seriously about life and death. When he was a junior in college, he left his school in the end. He left in search of the truth.


He became a monk at Songgwang Temple in Suncheon. But as soon as his book came out, he became very famous. "Nonpossesion", his first book, became a bestseller. However, he got tired of getting spotlight. That's why he moved to a small cottage. He lived alone there and practiced himself what he told people to do.


You might think I am a buddhist. But I am not. I just love him regardless of his religion. It goes back to high school days. You must know how much Suneung gave us a hard time. Not only physically but even mentally. I was just one of those students who prayed every single day that I could escape from this hell or the world would end when I woke up tomorrow. 


Whenever I didn't want to study, but had to do something that looked productive, I used to go to the library. There, this book, "non-possession"(or "Musoyu"), captured my attention. I even transcribed it to keep all his teaching in mind. In this book, he asked us to live a life where we are not ruled by material things.


I would like to talk about him more. When I first saw his picture, I felt like being overwhelmed by him. Of his face, the eyes particularly impressed me. We, Korean, often say like "Eyes are alive". I didn't know the exact meaning before. I came to understand what exactly it meant seeing him. His eyes are literally alive. Think of the elderly we usually see around us. Think of there eyes. And then, look at his picture again. You must find the differences,the sharpness and the brightness.


He passed away at the age of 78. He had suffered from lung cancer for several years. Before he died, he expressed his wish that his books should not be published anymore. In accordance with his last will, all publishers decided to discontinue sales of his books. I remember many people rushing into buying his last books at that time.


Even thought he left this world, all his teaching will last forever.


  1. 201001081/Rho ryun
    Peer response. In accordance with the instructions on page 88.

    1. What do you like about this essay?
    I like this essay because he wrote about a person I have interested in. I also got an influence by reading his book. I like your detail information about him. For example, you gave information about the monk chronologically, from his birth to death.

    2. What one word would you choose to describe Beop Jeong’s character? What specific information in the draft caused you to choose this word?
    Non-possesion is the word I chose. But you did not give further explanation about it. I could understand the concept only because I already knew what that means. I think “live a life where we are not ruled by material things” is not enough to describe his character. I recommend you to use “Quote” of his words.

    3. List any places where you do not understand the writer’s meaning.
    I think everything is pretty clear. But the word “Suneung” could have a possibility not to be understood for some people who have no idea about the concept. How about explain it or just use “University entrance exam”?

    4. What do you notice about the organization of the essay? For example, is the number of paragraphs appropriate? How could the writer improve the organization of the essay?
    Yeah it organized well. But you know, press “Tab” button to give space in front of every paragraphs. Other than that, all seems fine.

    5. What would you like to know more about?
    As I mentioned in Q#2, I want to know his message. It will be great if you let me know some of the messages he trying to serve.

    6. Who do you think would be interested in reading this essay?
    Definitely, the possible reader must be people who have interests about the monk, Beop Jeong.

  2. To Choe Kyung-Yo From Kang Dabida

    1. Write one sentence to sum up what this person is like.
    It was about a monk (obviously Beob Jeong) who tried to live apart from secular life.

    2. List three details from the essay that support your sentence in step 1.
    He got tired of getting spotlight.
    That's why he moved to a small cottage.
    He asked us to live a life where we are not ruled by material things.

    3. Put a check next to each of the methods below that the writer uses to reveal the person’s character. For each method that you checked, give one example from the essay.
    - What the person is like
    From the sentence that ‘His eyes are literally alive’, we can guess he was a man of sagacity.

    - What the person does
    teaching people as a monk

    - What other people say about the person
    It is mentioned that many people have loved him and deeply respected him.

    4. Were there any things in this essay that you did not understand? If so, what were they?
    Everything was understandable except for the more supporting points. For example, you mentioned in your last paragraph that he wanted his book to be stopped published, but did not address why, so it kind of made me wonder why.

    5. Why do you think the writer chose to describe this particular person?

    When the writer was having a hard time, the book published by Beob Jeong inspired him and taught lessons.

    6. Write one or two questions about the person described in this essay that you would like the writer to answer in the next draft.
    How did Beob Jeong decide to be a monk after searching the life of truth?
    What was one of the most inspiring lessons you got from him?