Richard Cassaro is an author, researcher, and filmmaker from New York City. He came to international recognition in 2011 with his bestselling book, Written in Stone: Decoding the Secret Masonic Religion Hidden in Gothic Cathedrals and World Architecture . His 2016 book The Missing Link: Powerful Evidence of an Advanced Golden Age Culture in Prehistoric Antiquity , provides further evidence for his discoveries. His travel and life experiences have provided him with rare insight into megaliths, mythology, magic, symbolism, comparative religion and occult archaeology, and all of his research is meticulously referenced and cited to a high academic standard, a rarity among works of this genre. A lifelong explorer and field investigator, he has recently opened his own tour company, Triptych Temple Tours, LLC, aimed at leading travel adventures to Egypt, Peru, Mexico, Italy, Spain, India, China, and other ancient sites described in his research. He is a much sought after public speaker. To book Cassaro for your event, please fill out this form.
Kukai (774 – 835 AD) was a Japanese monk, civil servant, scholar, poet, artist, and founder of an esoteric sect known as Shingon, which combined elements from Buddhism, Old Shinto, Taoism, and other religions. He and his followers practiced Shugendo, a philosophy based on achieving spiritual power through discipline and self-denial. Towards the end of his life, Kukai went into a state of deep meditation and denied all food and water, eventually leading to his voluntary death. He was entombed on Mount Koya in Wakayama prefecture. Some time later, the tomb was opened and Kukai, known posthumously as Kobo-Daishi, was supposedly found as if sleeping, his complexion unchanged and his hair healthy and strong.
Doctrinally the Southern School is associated with the teaching that enlightenment is sudden , while the Northern School is associated with the teaching that enlightenment is gradual. This was a polemical exaggeration, since both schools were derived from the same tradition, and the so-called Southern School incorporated many teachings of the more influential Northern School.  Eventually both schools died out, but the influence of Shenhui was so immense that all later Chan schools traced their origin to Huineng, and "sudden enlightenment" became a standard doctrine of Chan.