About Our Teacher
Mt. Equity Abbess
Rev. Dai-En Bennage
Rev. Patricia Dai-En Bennage found her path on Buddhism
with A Manual of Zen
by D. T. Suzuki in 1958. A resident of Japan for 23 years, she began
practice with the Rinzai Zen Master Omori Sogen Roshi in Tokyo in 1975.
She later received priest precepts from Noda Daito Roshi, and trained
at the NiSodo, the Women's training monastery in Nagoya. After
receiving Transmission, she graduated from the Shike` program ending in
1990. She practiced with the Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh before founding Mt.
Equity Zendo in 1991. She is the translator of Abbess Shundo Aoyama
Roshi's book Zen Seeds, and interpreted
for her for the East-West Spiritual Exchanges between
Buddhist and Christian contemplatives.
While in Japan, Rev. Dai-En assisted in leading
zazen at Kasamatsu Women’s Prison. Here in the U.S. Rev.
Dai-En led zazen at several federal prisons in the area. After
leading zazen at Bucknell University for 12 years, she has asked
Prof. Nancy Nanshin White to instruct in her place. Installed
as Abbess in 2005, Rev. Dai-En is a Jun-Shike`, or Associate
Master Teacher, authorized to assist other teachers’ disciples and assist in major ceremonies.
2008, Rev. Dai-En was one of twenty Buddhist women presented with the
"Outstanding Women in Buddhism Award," given by the United
Nations International Women's Day Association for the promotion of the
status of women.