Esalen is open!

Starting Friday May 17 at 6:30 a.m., Highway 1 north of Esalen will reopen with the use of a 24/7 signalized traffic control, providing unrestricted public access with one-way alternating traffic in both the north and southbound directions. Please plan travel accordingly to accommodate a brief delay of up to 10-15 minutes at the traffic control site.

Highway 1 south of Esalen remains closed. Guests traveling from points south of us, please take the alternate route through Monterey.

Learn more.

Learn more.

Due to road closures along Highway 1 to our north and south, Esalen is closed through April 11.
Esalen Institute is open! However, Highway 1 to the south is closed — please review the alternate route directions.

Esalen opens May 3, 2024

Visitors are now able to access Esalen as well as other businesses and trails in northern Big Sur via twice-daily convoys on Highway 1 operated by Caltrans.

Convoys run only at 7:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. each day. These are the only opportunities to travel into and out of Big Sur, so visitors must plan accordingly.

Learn more.

Stacia Butterfield, Marques Redd, and Andrew HolEcek

September 9–13, 2024

Choose Your Path

We humans are curious and since time immemorial, think deeply about non ordinary states of consciousness. This fall, embark on a weeklong campus-wide transformative journey of self-discovery with Esalen community as we delve into the depths of the mind through African ritual and sacred art, dream and sleep yoga modalities, and Holotropic breathwork.

This annual program is a unique opportunity to explore our capacity to reach an altered state of consciousness, expand awareness, and tap into the uncharted realms of the mind through our breath and body. Together with leading edge faculty: Marques Redd, Stacia Butterfield, and Andrew Holecek — through an amalgam of pathways we will experience how when we alter our state of consciousness we can shift personal and global challenges into individual and collective opportunities.

While psychotropic plant medicines can induce altered states of consciousness, humans have been gifted with the ability to induce these states on our own. Using our breath and our dreams as portals, just as ancient cultures have been doing for centuries, we can open up and explore our individual and collective consciousness.

You are an explorer, and you represent our species, and the greatest good you can do is to bring back a new idea, because our world is endangered by the absence of good ideas. Our world is in crisis because of the absence of consciousness.
— Terence McKenna

Choose Your Path

The week-long event features an array of drop-in classes by day and community events by night. Please choose and register for a pathway from the below three options. These pathways offer an opportunity to break out into smaller cohorts and dive more deeply into your selected modality. These experiences are held on Tuesday and as part of Wednesday’s schedule.

African Ritual
and Sacred Art

with Marques Redd
Holotropic Breathwork with Stacia ButterfieldRegister NowJoin the WaitlistJoin the Waitlist

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Explore Holotropic Breathwork® as a pathway to reach non-ordinary states of consciousness. For thousands of years and across many cultures, breath work has been used to induce enhanced state of consciousness as a strategy for meaningful transformation and self-exploration. These states can mark life’s major transitions and rites of passage and deepen one’s connection to self, community, and the natural world. Participants will participate in two Holotropic Breathwork sessions, one as “breather” and one as “sitter.”

Register for
Holotropic Breathwork®
Join the Waitlist
Holotropic Breathwork®
Join the Waitlist
Holotropic Breathwork®

African Ritual
and Sacred Art

with Marques Redd
Register NowJoin the WaitlistJoin the Waitlist

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Join the Waitlist

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According to Nigerian-Igbo myth-science, human history can be divided into Four World Ages: eras of Divine Unity, Separation, Civilization, and Chaos. Blending visual art, traditional African cosmology and ritual, and creative expression, this pathway  invites profound engagement with ancient wisdom and personal discovery. Participants will watch a film that explores these four stages, and  then experience these stages through guided visualizations and breathwork. Participants will create oracle card decks based on images from the film for dream realm guidance.

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African Ritual & Sacred Art
Join the Waitlist
African Ritual & Sacred Art
Join the Waitlist
African Ritual & Sacred Art

African Ritual
and Sacred Art

with Marques Redd
The Five Nocturnal Meditations with Andrew HolecekRegister NowJoin the WaitlistJoin the Waitlist

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The five nocturnal meditations allow you to explore and stabilize altered states of consciousness with full lucidity every night. Those meditations are a unique form of “night school” and include: liminal dreaming, lucid dreaming, dream yoga, yoga nidra, and bardo yoga. These five meta-meditations can open the aperture of your mind, and give you access codes to hack into previously restricted domains of consciousness. Together we will explore how to take the light of lucidity into the dream world and back into daily life, using it to illuminate and transform our reality.

Register for
Five Nocturnal Meditations
Join the Waitlist
Holotropic Breathwork®
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Five Nocturnal Meditations
A man dances facing the Pacific Ocean on the pool deck at Esalen.

Imagine if you pressed pause
on your life for four weeks to
give yourself time and space
to transform.

About the Faculty

Stacia Butterfield

Stacia Butterfield is a certified Holotropic Breathwork® practitioner with 15 years of dedicated service and close work with Stanislav Grof, the originator of Holotropic Breathwork and a pioneering psychedelic researcher. She has also been a senior staff member coordinating, facilitating, and teaching residential training retreats across the US for many years.

Read More.

Marques Redd

Marques Redd is a traditional African cosmologist, independent scholar, filmmaker, sculptor, and art curator based in Pittsburgh, PA. He has degrees from Harvard and UC-Berkeley and has trained in Afro-Cuban, ancient Egyptian, Yoruba, Dogon, Igbo, and Dagara spiritual systems.

Read more.

Andrew Holecek

Andrew Holecek has completed the traditional three-year Buddhist meditation retreat and offers seminars internationally on meditation, lucid dreaming, and the art of dying. He is the author of many books, including The Power and the Pain and Preparing to Die.

Read more.

Workshop Schedule

Additional details will be posted as they become available.

Monday
5:00 pm – 5:45 pm * How to Drop into Esalen *
7:15 pm – 9:30 pm Opening Circle

Tuesday
7:30 am – 8:30 am Drop in classes
10:00 am – 12:30 pm Pathway Specific Breakout
2:30 pm – 6:30 pm Holotropic Breathwork Breakout
4:00 pm – 6:00 pm African Ritual and Sacred Art Breakout
4:00 pm – 6:00 pm Five Nocturnal Meditations Breakout

Wednesday
9:30 am – 12:30 pm Holotropic Breathwork Breakout
9:30 am – 12:30 pm Five Nocturnal Meditations Breakout
10:00 am – 12:30 pm African Ritual and Sacred Art Breakout
4:00 pm – 6:30 pm Drop in classes
7:30 pm – 9:30 pm Drop in classes

Thursday
7:30 am – 12:30 pm Drop in classes
4:00 pm – 6:30 pm Drop in classes
7:30 pm – 9:30 pm Drop in classes

Friday
10:00 am – 12:30 pm Closing Circle

See general schedule information including arrival, departure and meal times.

MONDAY

After 2:00 pm
Arrive at Esalen

5:00 pm – 5:45 pm
How to Drop Into Esalen

7:15 pm – 9:30 pm
Opening Ceremony

TUESDAY

7:30 am – 8:30 am
Optional Morning Movement

10:00 am – 12:30 pm
Path-Specific Morning Session

4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Path-Specific Afternoon Session

7:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Campus-Wide Evening Event

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WEDNESDAY

7:30 am – 8:30 am
Optional Morning Movement

10:00 am – 12:30 pm
Path-Specific Closing Session

4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Drop-in Classes TBD

7:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Campus-Wide Evening Event

THURSDAY

7:30 am – 8:30 am
Optional Morning Movement

10:00 am – 12:30 pm
Drop-in Classes TBD

4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Drop-in Classes TBD

7:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Campus-Wide Evening Event

FRIDAY

7:30 am – 8:30 am
Optional Morning Movement

10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Closing Ceremony

By 2:00 pm
Depart Esalen

Accommodations & Tuition

The all-inclusive tuition for this workshop ranges from $1200 to $8300 depending on the type of accommodation selected. Select a Path and click Register Now for more information about accommodations, including availability.

We offer scholarship funds for those with financial need. Learn more.

Choose Your Path