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Chapter 3: A Meeting of Two Rivers

“Now you have disconnected yourself absolutely and categorically from the Hindu fold and the Jaina fold, in fact, from the whole past of this country. Will you still be criticizing Hindus and Jainas?”

Of course. Now my sword will be sharper, and my hammer will be bigger. In fact, I have disconnected myself absolutely from any fold, any organization for this very purpose. And on my own I am not going to create any organization. That will be against my very being, against my whole life’s effort.

My love is freedom, and those who have gathered around me - and many more will be coming - they have to remember it. You are not becoming a member of any church. You are just joining hands with friends who are traveling on the same path. At any moment you can leave the path. Everyone is welcome to join, and everyone is welcome in freedom, with blessings, if he wants to go to seek somewhere else.

I bless all kinds of seeking on all paths.

Before the sutras, a little biographical note:

Kakusan was a disciple of Kyozan. After his enlightenment he lived on mount Kaku from which his name is derived - Kakusan.

When he was about to die, Kakusan collected a pile of firewood deep in the forest. At noon he refused his meal, went to the pile of wood, lit it and climbed on top.

Kakusan then put his umbrella behind his head to make a halo. Thus he ended his life in the flames, holding out his staff like the demon-subduing vajra.

Standing, he died in the fire. It must have been a very strange sight: when the fire cooled, he was still standing - utterly burned, dead, but holding his staff straight. That staff has made many seekers enlightened.

It has to be remembered that a man of the quality of Kakusan I call a religious man. Only one who knows his life can know his death; they are two sides of the same coin. If you have never known life, you will never know death. And to miss life and death and the whole beauty of both is to miss the very meaning of existence.

The sutra:

Beloved Buddha,
Once Kakusan went to see Kyozan. Raising his foot, Kakusan said, “The twenty-eight Indian Patriarchs were like this.”

.Standing on one foot. The meaning of it is utter balance, no trembling inside, utter silence.

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