The True Meaning of TAE GEUK
The literal translation of Tae Geuk is: TAE = largeness GEUK = eternity.
In fact, when you turn and face the flag, if the instructor says gukki, it is a shortened version of taegukki. It represents the eternity of opposites that compose the cosmos.
The blue lower half of the circle on the Korean flag (in Chinese the Yin), represents earth, while Yang is represented by the upper half of the circle, Yang being heaven. Each is dependent on the other, without heat, there is no cold, without ugliness, there cannot be beauty, without winter, there cannot be summer, without night there cannot be day. By maintaining the balance and harmony of these opposing forces, characteristics and elements in everyday life, we experience the Do that is at the heart of taekwondo.
The eight Taegeuk Poomsae are represented by different theories. If you look on the Korean flag, you will see 4 symbols, in the corners of the flag. Those are divination signs, in the form of trigrams. The straight lines represent the male, or Yang, while the broken lines represent the Yin, or female characteristics.
As an example, the one in the upper left corner of the flag is called Keon (the one with three straight lines), which represents heaven. The one in the bottom right is Kon (sometimes seen as Gon) representing earth.
In this way and in many other ways in taekwondo, you can see the progression of a belt, coming down from heaven to earth, to be reborn again as a black belt.
Forum member Madmonte