The buddhist confucian conflict in the early chosôn and kihwa's syncretic response: The hyôn chông non
Buddhism became established as a state religion in Korea during the sixth century, and was able to maintain that status with relatively little opposition throughout the Unified Silla and Koryô periods. However, at the end of the Koryô, the Buddhist establishment ended up in a serious confrontation with a rising Korean Neo Confucian polemical movement, a confrontation in which it would end up being the clear loser. The nature of the developing Neo Confucian polemic was twofold. The first aspect was an outcry against the economic privileges and excessive government influence of the Buddhist church. The second was a philosophical/religious opposition to Buddhist doctrine and practice, which had developed out of the writings of the Sung Neo Confucian architects, most important of whom were the two Ch'eng brothers and Chu Hsi.
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