He became a Buddhist monk three times during his life; once at the age of 12, later in 1899, and again in 1903. He studied in Japan and traveled to many Buddhist countries including India, and Java. He was involved in revolutionary activity against the Qing Dynasty writing articles and papers. He mastered many languages — English, French, Japanese and Sanskrit. He died at the age of 34 in Shanghai, reputedly of eating 60 meat dumplings to win a bet.