David Mason is an American anthropologist and expert researcher and writer on Korean mountain spirits and Korean Buddhism. His research focuses on Korea's sacred mountains and its spirits as a symbol of Korean culture, and he strives to spread awareness of them around the world.
Although Mason is not of Asian descent, he always had a deep interest in oriental philosophical traditions as well as mountain culture since he was in high school. He studied (Oriental) Philosophy in California State University of the U.S, and came to Korea to find out more about these subjects. Mason was absolutely captivated with the beauty and the associated culture (both religious and spiritual) of Korean mountains which then led him to develop his study in Korean culture. He got an MA in Korean studies at Yeonsei University. In 1999, Mason was appointed as a visiting professor at Yonsei University, the Wonju campus, and in 2005, he was appointed as a full-time professor of Korean Tourism at Yonsei University. Serving as a professor, Mason kept exploring his interest in Korean Buddhism and Korean mountain culture, and published several books on these topics to internationally spread awareness of traditional Korean culture. He’s one of the founding members of the Temple Stay program, and currently serving as promotional ambassador of the Baekdu-daegan.
On HEART TO HEART, David Mason is here to talk about traditional Korean culture and his deep love for Korea and Korean mountains.