Taegeuk (also rendered as Taeguk) is the Korean pronunciation of the Chinese word taiji which is translated as "great polarity" and commonly associated with certain philosophical values. It is also the symbol that makes up the center of the South Korean Flag and the source for its name, Taegeukgi.
The taegeuk design dates back to the 7th century in Korea but recent excavations go back even further. There is a stone carved with the taegeuk design in the compound of Gameunsa Temple, built in 628 during the reign of King Jinpyeong of Silla. Traces of taegeuk designs have been found in the remains of the ancient cultures of Korea; in a Goguryeo tomb and in Silla remains. Recently however, a 1,400-year-old artifact with the taegeuk pattern has been found in Bogam-ri Baekje tombs at Naju, South Jeolla Province, making it the oldest taegeuk symbol found in Korea, which predates by 682 years what had been the oldest artifact that held the taegeuk pattern, found at the Gameunsa Temple.
The taegeuk design was also used to drive off evil spirits. In the Goryeo and Joseon dynasties, the design was later used to represent Korean taoism and to express the hope for harmony of eum and yang to enable the people to live happy lives with good government. The blue and red swirling semicircles of the Taegeuk pattern have existed since ancient times.
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Category: Religious Symbols.
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Religious symbolism is the use of symbols, including archetypes, acts, artwork, events, or natural phenomena, by a religion. Religions view religious texts, rituals, and works of art as symbols of co… read more »