Chang Sik Kim

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Fast Facts
Zen Buddhism
Main Countries of Activity: 
United States
Date of Birth: 
Place of Birth: 
South Korea
In His/Her Body ("alive"): 


Chang Sik Kim was born in South Korea in 1944. When he was thirteen he met his teacher, Seung Sahn Lee, and entered the Hwa Gye temple in Seoul. When Kim was 21, his teacher sent him on a 100 day meditation retreat. During this retreat the art of Shim Gum Do was revealed to Kim through his meditation and he attained Mind Sword enlightenment.

In 1971, Shim Gum Do Founding Master, Chang Sik Kim officially introduced Shim Gum Do with the Proclamation of Shim Gum Do. Kim established the Korean Shim Gum Do Association and began teaching Shim Gum Do in Korea. In 1974, Kim came to the United States and began teaching Shim Gum Do, forming clubs at MIT and Brown University. In 1978 he established the American Buddhist Shim Gum Do Association and in 1991 he established the World Shim Gum Do Association unifying all of the worldwide Shim Gum Do Associations. In 1990, Seung Sahn Lee, certified Kim’s enlightenment. This made him the 79th patriarch of this Dharma lineage.

Currently Chang Sik Kim lives and teaches at his temple, Shim Gwang Sa, the Mind Light Temple in Brighton, Massachusetts. Kim has also written 22,000 Zen Poems from 1990 to 2008 and continues today. He has also published 11 books in English, two in Korean, one each in Spanish, French and Japanese.


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