About Us


Dharma Holders

The Village Zendo is a community of people who come together to practice in the Soto Zen tradition.  We offer zazen (sitting meditation), one-on-one instruction with a teacher, dharma talks, chanting services, retreats, workshops and study groups.

Co-founded in 1986 by Roshi Pat Enkyo O’Hara and Sensei Barbara Joshin O’Hara, the Village Zendo is committed to authentically continuing the Zen tradition while keeping it contemporary and relevant to today’s world.   We are located in lower Manhattan, offering a place of healing and sanctuary in the midst of one of the world’s busiest and most vital cities.

Our abbot, Roshi Pat Enkyo O’Hara, received dharma transmission in the White Plum lineage of Taizan Maezumi Roshi, which incorporates both the Soto and Rinzai  Zen traditions.   Our zendo has been given the Japanese name “Dotoku-ji” (True Expression Temple).

Enkyo Roshi is supported by six dharma successors who form the VZ teaching staff. The zendo is known for its vibrant and diverse community and the stability of a sangha that draws from a core of longtime dedicated practitioners.  Our programming  emphasizes the myriad ways Zen relates to our daily lives — writing, social action, health and well-being, and the arts — as well as traditional Zen studies.

Participation is open to all.  We welcome practitioners and students of various traditions to join us at whatever level of commitment they wish.