Center for Theory & Research

Current Initiatives

Directed by Esalen co-founder Michael Murphy and Professor Jeff Kripal, Esalen’s Center for Theory & Research (CTR) sponsors research, theory, and action to promote positive social change and the realization of the human potential.

Indigenous Plant Medicines Movements

Facilitator: Charles Stang
October 8–13, 2023

As the wave of the “psychedelic renaissance” crests, and psychedelics are increasingly mainstreamed and commodified, there is an acute danger that indigenous plant medicine traditions will once again be silenced and marginalized. Thankfully there are numerous movements afoot among indigenous activists and wisdom-keepers from around the world that are pushing against this trend. This gathering at Esalen is intended to serve as a strategic networking event for a number of these movements. By hosting leaders from both emerging and established indigenous movements, we hope to help enable them to chart a course for a flourishing future of plant medicine traditions based on solidarity, cooperation, concerted planning and effort, and shared wisdom.

Underwriting is needed for project research, facilitators, translators, coordination, summary writers, occasional expert fees, travel and accommodation, and special outreach projects.

To make a donation, please email Mary O-Brien at

Esalen Institute is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, tax-exempt organization. Donations to Esalen Institute are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Federal tax ID #94-6114235