One of Tesshu’s former students, Ogura Tetsuju, had undertaken a three year Zen retreat when he heard that Tesshu was on his death bed. He asked for, and was given, permission to visit his teacher one last time. However, when he arrived Tesshu refused to see him, saying only “Tell him the three years are not up yet.
The day before he died Tesshu noticed that there were no sounds of training to be heard from the dojo. He was told that the students had decided to cancel training to be with him in his last hours. “Training is the only way to honour me!” he thundered, and ordered them back to training.