Monk Coen


Born in São Paulo in 1947, Claudia Dias Baptista de Souza, Monk Coen, has led a unique life. Mother at 17, she worked as a journalist for a São Paulo daily, abused drugs and alcohol, and attempted suicide. After some years in Europe, she went back to Brazil. Very much in love, she moved to the United States with her American boyfriend, stage illuminator for artists like Alice Cooper and David Bowie. In the US, she started practicing zazen regularly and took her monastic vows in 1983. Soon after her vows, she joined a nuns’ monastery in Nagoya, Japan, where she lived for eight years. After five marriages, she lives in Temple Zen Buddhist Zendo Community Brasil, in São Paulo, the same neighborhood she grew up in. She has the company of her disciples and many dogs.