The following story is told of Kakua:

Shakuhachi Player“Kakua was the first Japanese to study Zen in China.

He received the true teachings and meditated constantly in the mountains.

When asked to teach, he would always say a few words and then move on.

When he returned to Japan, the emperor invited him to give a teaching at the palace.

Kakua stood silent, took out his flute and blew one short note.

He then bowed politely, left the palace, and was never seen again.”

– Buddhism was brought from China to Japan by Kakua, a Japanese monk. There it assumed the style of Zen we know today. The Indian word ‘dhyan’, meaning meditation, became ‘chan’ in China and ‘zen’ in Japan.