About Soto Zen Meditation
About Our Teachers
For the Beginner Longer Retreats
Special/Upcoming Events
MEZ Friends
Contact Us



Siberian Hyacinth hugging the tree


Mount Equity Zendo, Jiho-an is a meditation center within the Soto Zen 'Shiikantaza' tradition of Buddhism, dedicated to the practice of 'Just Sitting". A later branch developed which included the practice of 'Sitting Koans' in the Zendo, while Dogen taught "Studying Koans' in the study room. The heart of Zen is the cultivation of equanimity, patience, clarity, and compassion, supporting good health within one’s personal life as well as in the wider community.

MEZ is located in the village of Pennsdale, PA overlooked by Bald Eagle Mountain and not far from the Susquehanna River. It is a 20-minute drive west to the city of Williamsport or south to Interstate 80.

Mount Equity Zendo

Jihoji and Jiho-an

Recently the large manor of Mt. Equity was sold in order to downsize, and an 1850s house, less than a mile away and next door to the circa-1799 Quaker Meeting House, became the new Mount Equity Zendo practice place.

"Mt. Equity Zendo, Jihoji" means: Meditation place on a mountain of equanimity, a temple of compassionate teachings. "Mt. Equity Zendo, Jiho-an" means: Meditation place on a mountain of equanimity, a cottage or hermitage of compassionate teachings, marking that only the size of our practice place has changed.

View from the MEZ Jiho-an Barn

The building that served MEZ was originally an old Quaker manor that dated back to 1810. In the 1940s it was turned into an apartment building, housing, among others, Abbess Dai-En’s family. When the Abbess returned from 15 years of Zen training in Japan she rented one of the apartments and began offering classes and retreats in meditation.

After a few more years, with the help of a growing number of students and MEZ Friends, it became possible to make use of more of the apartments. In 1998 MEZ was incorporated and became a 501(c)3 non-profit religious organization, and in 2000 MEZ purchased the building to serve as a Zen Meditation Center. The building was sold by MEZ in 2014.

Mt. Equity Sangha "wall gazing"

Thanks to the on-going support and generosity of MEZ Friends, both in the United States and Japan, Abbess Dai-En was officially appointed as abbess of MEZ in May of 2005 by the Soto Zen School in Japan.

Programs, retreats and classes are available for those with little or no experience in meditation, as well as for seasoned practitioners.  Abbess Dai-En is also available to officiate for weddings, baby blessings, funerals, and memorial ceremonies.

MEZ is a member of the American Zen Teachers' Association, the Association of Soto Zen Buddhism, and the Soto Zen Buddhist Association.
Mt. Equity Zendo offers Zen Meditation and the seamless practice of mindfulness.

For information on Mt. Equity's programs call 570-546-2784 or e-mail registrar.
Mt. Equity Zendo is located at 479 Village Rd. Pennsdale, PA 17756-7873