Esalen Institute

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Esalen Institute,

organization est. 1962 by Michael Murphy and Richard Price that was an important center for the so-called human potential movement of the 1960s and 70s. Located in Big Sur, Calif., and influenced by Eastern religions and by the theories of Aldous HuxleyHuxley, Aldous Leonard,
1894–1963, English author; grandson of Thomas Henry Huxley, brother of Sir Julian Huxley, and half-brother of Sir Andrew Huxley. Educated at Eton and Oxford, he traveled widely and during the 1920s lived in Italy.
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, Esalen served as a hub for the counterculture and for activities related to consciousness raising and consciousness expanding. Stressing a humanistic approach to psychology and human development, it continues to hold a variety of workshops, courses, and seminars and engage in other educational and psychologically oriented activities.


See studies by W. T. Anderson (2004), J. J. Kripal and G. W. Shuck, ed. (2005), and J. J. Kripal (2007).

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Named for the tribe of Native Americans that once lived amid the seaside cliffs of Big Sur, Esalen's clothing-optional mineral springs are almost as famous as its reputation as the birthplace of the human potential movement.
Lee, diving in 29 m of water at Esalen Pinnacle (36[degrees]07.6"N, 121[degrees]39"W), central California, photographed a fish we have identified as Asemichthys taylori Gilbert, 1912 [referred to by some authorities as Radulinus taylori (Gilbert 1912)], the spinynose sculpin (Fig.
Storr's main focus, though, is on some nostrums that emerged in the 1960s, especially from the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California Esalen was a sort of hub for the counterculture of its day.
Esalen played a critical role in introducing and promoting esoteric spirituality so that it flowed into mainstream culture....
However, in the 1960s fantasyland went into overdrive a glaring demonstration was the Esalen Institute in California which had thousands of hippie followers who believed in the supernatural and in madness as a form of superior rationality.
The quest for utopia here on earth has inspired communities as diverse as Jim Jones' deadly cult and the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California.
They witnessed the pullulation of every possible kind and form of the intuitive ("Esalen is a mother church of a new American religion for people who think they don't like churches or religion but who still want to believe in the supernatural"); the preposterous (a conspiracy theory about "shape-shifting reptilian humanoids," which "10 percent of Americans who describe themselves as 'very conservative' or 'very liberal' believe in"); and the ominous (pseudomedicine-apocalypticism, survivalists, firearms junkies, the pedophilic-satanic-cult hysteria of the 1980s, climate change skepticism, ad infinitum).
Wheal began to envision gatherings of this sort in 2007, while he was teaching at Esalen, the spiritual retreat in California.
They had a strong influence on me when I spent a week of 1976 at their summer-long conference at Esalen. I got my California DUALITY license plates shortly after that experience and those plates have been on my cars for more than 40 years.
(7) (Many socialist states also sent language students there.) During the 1980s, unofficial "television bridges"--sponsored by the Esalen Institue in Big Sur, California--supported US-Soviet dialogue through talk-show sessions mediated by Vladimir Pozner and Phil Donahue.