- The First Meeting with Gim Hyung-yul
- 1 Gim Hyung-yul lived in Hwahn-pyung Village of Geum-gu County. He was born the only son of a rich family. Ever since his youth, he had sought dao and looked for fellow seekers. One day, he heard a rumor about a divine child with the surname Gahng.
- 2 Determined to meet Him, Hyung-yul embarked on a journey to Go-bu County. At sunset on the first day, he arrived at Bool-chool Hermitage in Jung-eup County.
- 3 Just as Hyung-yul went through the gate, an owl cried. A monk in the yard exclaimed, “How loudly the owl cries! You must be no ordinary person.”
- 4 “If I am not ordinary, then what am I? Divine?”
The monk asked, “Where are you heading?”
- 5 “I was walking along the road, but for some reason was drawn to this place. Indeed, it is strange that the owl cried out like that as soon as I arrived.”
- 6 Meanwhile, Hahk-bohng entered the yard and began playing a game in which He threw coins and small rocks that looked like ba-dook stones. “This is of no use,” He said eventually and looked in Hyung-yul’s direction.
- 7 “Where do You live?” Hyung-yul asked Him.
“Why are you asking Me where I live?”
- 8 “I am on my way to Go-bu to find a person called Gahng.”
“Why are you looking for Him?”
- 9 “Isn’t it said,” Hyung-yul replied, “that how great a tree will become can be seen in the first sprout? I would like to see whether He will be a great man or not. And since I have no friends, I would like to befriend Him.”
- 10 At that moment, Eun Yahng-duk, a man from the same village as Hahk-bohng, pointed and said, “This young man is that person.”
“Could it be true?” Hyung-yul exclaimed, and with great pleasure bowed down to the ground twice.
- 11 “Once would have been enough,” said Hahk-bohng. “Am I dead? Why did you bow to Me twice?” Hahk-bohng was only fourteen years old at the time.
- 12 “If I were three years older than I am now,” Hyung-yul replied, “I would expect to be Your senior. Since I am not that old, how could I not bow to You?” Hyung-yul rose and bowed to Hahk-bohng again.
- 13 “You know etiquette,” Hahk-bohng said, as if speaking to a younger person.
- 14 Eun said to Hyung-yul, “Though He is young, He is wise in all matters. The neighbors have dissuaded His family from moving to another village.”
- 15 Hahk-bohng said, “The spirits of My parents were about to depart. To safeguard them, I had them stay. Am I a person who would stay just because someone tells Me not to go?”
- 16 In a loud voice, He said to Hyung-yul, “You think I am standing on the ground, but dig under Me and you will see I am floating in the air. Try to lift Me.” He then stepped up on a wooden block.
- 17 Though doubtful, Hyung-yul bent forward and put his hands under Hahk-bohng’s feet as if to lift Him. Hahk-bohng floated upward. Surprised, Hyung-yul lifted his hands higher and Hahk-bohng rose higher. The higher he raised his hands, the higher Hahk-bohng rose.
- 18 From that day on, Hahk-bohng was friendly toward Hyung-yul.
- Hahk-bohng Works as a Farmhand and as a Woodcutter
- 19 Because of His family’s poverty, Hahk-bohng discontinued His studies when He was fifteen and traveled around trying to eke out a living.
- 20 In Guh-seul-mahk Village, He made straw sandals and sold them and worked as a farmhand, harvesting barley.
- 21 Near Nae-jahng Temple, He worked as a woodcutter for some time.
- (JSD Dojeon 1,17)