S-Space Kyujanggak Institute for Korean Studies (규장각한국학연구원) Korean Culture (한국문화) Korean Culture (한국문화) vol.30 (2002)
1910년대 『天道敎會月報』를 통해서 본 민중의 삶
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 규장각한국학연구원
- 한국문화, Vol.30, pp. 309-332
- Entering the 1910s', the Chosun people had just lost their country to the hands of the Japanese, and were expecting brutal ruling of the Japanese authorities. Yet during the 1910s', the Cheondo-gyo religious order witnessed an explosive uplift in its own status, and have become one of the leading religious orders of the time. The total number of the order's members is known to have reached even 3 million. The reason behind this uplift is obvious. Since the 18th century, the public have been wishing the advent of an economically sound, and politically democratic new age, but the instant occupation by foreign forces were forcing that age away from being realized. Then as one of the indigenous religions of those days, the Cheondo-gyo order, supporting the adherence to nationality and modern qualities, managed to provide the public with a renewed hope, and even a prospect of Utopian nature.
The 「Cheondo Gyohwae Weolbo(天道敎會月報)」 Monthly-bulletin, created by the Cheondo-gyo order, was first published in August 15th 1910, and was almost the only magazine at the time which had been published in a monthly fashion without any delays or omissions for quite a long time. This fact alone shows the influence and power the Cheondo-gyo religion had had upon the pubic. This magazine was the only source for the local believers who wished to reach and hear from the head of the order Son Byeong Hi, or other fellow believers, or even touch the modem qualities which were beginning to flood the lives of the public back then. And it was also the only way for the Cheondo-gyo believers to express their thoughts and feelings in a published media. So the influence that this magazine had upon the general believers, who were trying to shape their own perspectives toward their lives, the universe, the society, its history, and not to mention their own nationality, was quite tremendous.
This article have examined the editorials, reports and miscellaneous notifications which were all appeared in this monthly-bulletin. The bulletin itself was very accessible to the general believer-base, who were mostly peasants, so analyzing the contents of this publication should shed some light on the task trying to properly examine the lives of the Chosun public, who were beginning to learn modem qualities while also maintaining their national loyalty, by going through family-based religious training and extensive meditations, provided by the unified guidance of the Cheondo-gyo order, in a difficult time where the very nation had lost its sovereignty. Later the Cheondo-gyo order served as one of the leading figures of the 3.1 Movement, and there is no doubt that it was made possible thanks to the potentials and strengths accumulated within the very hearts of the Chosun public, who tried to overcome the drastic, conquered reality by joining the Cheondo-gyo activities and embracing the order's philosophy.