Catherine Genno Pagès, Roshi | I. Generation

Catherine Genno Pagès Roshi

Catherine Genno Pagès Roshi was born near Grenoble, France, and lived for much of her youth in Paris. After studying art history at the Sorbonne, she pursued a career in various Parisian galleries and museums.

Beginning in 1978, she began traveling throughout the United States, Mexico, Central America, India and Nepal, where she first encountered the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism and began practicing in that tradition.

Upon returning to Paris in 1982, she met the American Zen master Dennis Genpo Merzel Roshi, who became her teacher. For the next 10 years, she practiced Zen with him in Europe and America, and after completing her formal koan study, she received Dharma Transmission from him in 1992. On January 16th, 2005, her teacher gave her the final seal of approval (“Inka” in Japanese).

She teaches the practice of “just sitting” (Shikantaza) and Koan practice.

Catherine Genno Pagès Roshi is the first dharma heir of the American Zen master Genpo Merzel Roshi, who is an heir of the late Hakuyu Taizan Maezumi Roshi, founder of the Zen Center of Los Angeles. The Dana Zen Center is part of the White Plum Asangha, which was founded by the late Taizan Maezumi Roshi to support and unite all the practice centers and dharma successors in his lineage. Maezumi Roshi (1931-1995) was an early pioneer in the transmission of Japanese Zen Buddhism to the West. He received dharma transmission from Hakujun Kuroda Roshi in 1955. He also received final approval as a teacher (Inka) from both Koryu Osaka Roshi and Hakuun Yasutani Roshi, thus becoming a dharma successor in three lines of Zen.

Genno Roshi gave Dharma Transmission to Amy Hollowell in July 2004, to Frank De Waele in July 2005, to Corinne Frottier in July 2009 and to Michel Oltheten in May 2014. She gave Inka to Frank De Waele in October 2015, and to Amy Hollowell in November 2015.

Dana Sangha entrance door
Dana Sangha entrance door

Dana Zen Center was founded in the Paris suburb of Montreuil in 1994 by Roshi Catherine Genno Pagès, a lineage holder in the Soto school, to offer regular Zen teaching and meditation in a nonresidential, urban setting. Its members form a community of lay practitioners who seek to honor the integrity of the ancient Zen tradition while integrating the practice into daily, modern life. The Dana practice center is a nonresidential house in an urban setting on the eastern edge of Paris. It is easily accessible by the city’s public transport system (see Directions).

There are daily meditation sessions and a monthly retreat which is either one weekend or one week long. Introduction classes are held for beginners. During summer holidays a retreat is held in the country side. (see Coming events).

More to come…

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