A revered Zen teacher once approached the king’s palace late at night. The guards did not stop him as he made his way inside to where the king was seated upon his throne. The king recognized him too.

“Welcome, sir. What do you want?” the king asked.

“I wish to sleep in this inn tonight”, said the teacher.

Taken aback, the king snorted, “This is no inn! It is my palace!”

The teacher politely asked, “If I may ask, who owned this palace before you?”

“Why, my father, of course! He is dead now.”

“And who lived here before your father?””

“My grandfather, naturally. He’s dead too.”

“This building where people live for some time and go away, did you say that it is not an inn?”