Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
Multiple Paths to Peace and Power

Has your creativity, voice, or vision somehow been disconnected, silenced, or dimmed? Even if they feel lost forever, your truest, most powerful aspects are eager and ready to shine, and they are longing to live again. With so many different ways to reconnect — be it art, meditation, mindfulness, ritual, or community — Big Sur is where you’ll rediscover those precious, cherished selves. Choose your paths! They’re waiting here for you.

New On-Campus Workshops

Published July 23 – August 8, 2022

Awake in the Wild: Meditation in Nature, October 7–10, 2022 with Mark Coleman and Lori Schwanbeck
Cultivate mindfulness under the stillness of the cyprus trees, in a meadow teeming with life, and next to crashing ocean waves. Learn to be present to yourself while developing a contemplative relationship with nature, leading to beautiful states of joy, peace, wonder, and love — connection with oneself, one another, and the larger web of life. This workshop is appropriate for both beginning and experienced meditators.

Women's Visionary Summit, October 14 – 16, 2022 with Lucy Caldwell and Christen Lien
Join together with fellow visionaries, change agents, and leaders to facilitate the next wave of women’s empowerment. Experience a culture of mentorship; learn from others across disciplines, diverse backgrounds, and generations; and be present in your physical body with the foundation of self-love. This summit is an opportunity for women and women-identifying individuals to collaborate and bring their own healing gifts to the world from a place of embodied truth, grace, courage, and compassion.

Writing & Mindfulness: Cultivating a Practice for Navigating Difficult Times, October 17 – 21, 2022 with Janis Cooke Newman
This experiential meditation retreat and writing workshop invites meditators and writers of all levels to delve deeply into both practices in a safe and supportive environment. Guided meditations designed to help you navigate times of crisis and nourish creativity are supported by daily journaling and free writing. Tap into your creative energy, bypass your internal judge, and bring out your most original and deeply felt work! 

To Realign: Open Floor Movement Practice, October 17 – 21, 2022 with Andrea Juhan
To realign with what is essential in ourselves is vital to living meaningfully with our own values and gifts. During this week of retreat and focused play, you’ll be invited to reevaluate and renew through Open Floor Movement — a mindful movement practice that can be done at any level of fitness — within a supportive group process.

Harnessing the Power of Creation Through African Ritual, October 21 – 23, 2022 with Marques Redd
Both an important part of our global spiritual heritage and a powerful and effective mode of spiritual expression, traditional African rituals provide techniques for manifestation, fostering empowerment, affecting transformation, cultivating vitality, and expanding human consciousness. Come experience a variety of ritual modalities designed to enliven all senses, energize your intentions, and draw your desires. Return home with a variety of potent ritual tools to empower your life!

Grief Dancer, October 21–23, 2022 with Lucia Horan and Peter Selwyn
How do you process profound loss? Many of us have not found effective ways of expressing grief and as a result, we carry the cumulative weight of our unfinished business with us everywhere. Movement, story sharing, and supportive presence will help you move through grief and into the next phases of your life.

Yoga Nidra Retreat: Rest, Restore, and Remember Who You Really Are (Your True Self), October 24–28, 2022 with John Vosler
Yoga Nidra is a path to that liminal state of being between waking and sleeping. This is where you can systematically release your physical, emotional, and mental tensions to restore the body, clear the mind, and shift the habitual patterns that hold you back. Cultivate new tools, knowledge, and intentions to help you negotiate those stressful, confusing times when you forget who you truly are.

Esalen® Massage: The Basics, October 28–30, 2022 with Brita Ostrom and Vicki Topp
Whether you’re a novice or professional, this workshop will guide you through the basic concepts of Esalen Massage in a pleasant, easy-to-follow format. With brief lecture demonstrations and plenty of at-the-table guidance, the instructors will offer the essential elements, highlighting the foundational long, integrating strokes and gentle stretches.

Honoring the Ancestors: Tending Those That Came Before, Blessing That Which Is to Come, October 30 – November 4, 2022 with Gitanjali Hemp
We are part of a continuum, poised between the past and future — living in this present moment while carrying the legacy of the gifts and burdens of all of those who came before. Join us for a time of teachings, meditative and reflective practices, energy healing, ceremony, and ritual. We will honor and begin healing our relationship to the ancestral fields and shift the patterns of our ingrained conditioning to choose a new way forward together. 

Art As A Spiritual Path: Discovering Your Creative Mandala, October 31 – November 4, 2022 with Paul Heussenstamm
Whether you’ve never painted before or you’re looking for a new way to expand your creativity, painting a mandala (a geometric figure representing the universe in Hindu and Buddhist symbolism) is a gentle entry into the left brain hemisphere that helps reveal the artist within each of us. As a genuine form of meditation, it can open your heart, calm your mind, and even has the capacity to expand consciousness.

Relational Gestalt Practice: Open Seat Intensive, November 4–11, 2022 with Dorothy Charles
Using a Gestalt approach, learn skills to improve your ability to make contact with, develop, and track your emotions and sensations. In this workshop, we will learn to express ourselves and communicate our needs and wants effectively. With the support of the group, each participant will have an individual “open seat” session with Dorothy and we will practice Gestalt awareness as well as didactic and experiential exercises. Read more in this Esalen Spotlight interview.

Alert: Workshop Space Available! 

Ready to renew and jumpstart your metamorphosis this summer? These upcoming programs still have openings. Reserve now before they fill up!

More On-Campus Workshops

We have even more workshops for healing and self-exploration. Enroll now, or join our waitlist!

Live Extended Education Program (LEEP)

What would happen if you pressed pause on your everyday life and gave yourself four full weeks to evolve and transform at Esalen? If you’re ready to take the LEEP, we’re accepting applications for these exciting programs.

Esalen® Massage Intensive: Presence and Practice, September 24 – October 21, 2022 with Brita Ostrom, Char Pias, and Dean Marson
Learn how to connect with others through the healing touch of massage. ​​Esalen Massage melds hands-on technique with awareness practices, recognizing the unity of body, mind, and spirit. This is not a professional training course; however, professionals can refresh their technique. All students will receive an incredible array of new awarenesses and skills, including the ability to give a basic Esalen massage.

Integrative Gestalt Coaching, October 22 – November 18, 2022 with Perry Holloman
Integrative Gestalt Coaching™ (IGC) is a method developed by coach and bodyworker Perry Holloman over the last 40 years while living and working at Esalen. Ideal both for people wanting a month of self-exploration as well as those wanting to develop Gestalt Coaching skills to enhance their work, this well-rounded program will help you develop awareness of how your internal experience influences your relationships, and how your relationships transform you to powerfully impact the quality of your life.

“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?


If you’ve always wanted to visit Esalen but haven’t been able to find the room in your budget: Do you know about our scholarship program?

Learn More

About

Esalen Team

Multiple Paths to Peace and Power

About

Esalen Team

Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop

Has your creativity, voice, or vision somehow been disconnected, silenced, or dimmed? Even if they feel lost forever, your truest, most powerful aspects are eager and ready to shine, and they are longing to live again. With so many different ways to reconnect — be it art, meditation, mindfulness, ritual, or community — Big Sur is where you’ll rediscover those precious, cherished selves. Choose your paths! They’re waiting here for you.

New On-Campus Workshops

Published July 23 – August 8, 2022

Awake in the Wild: Meditation in Nature, October 7–10, 2022 with Mark Coleman and Lori Schwanbeck
Cultivate mindfulness under the stillness of the cyprus trees, in a meadow teeming with life, and next to crashing ocean waves. Learn to be present to yourself while developing a contemplative relationship with nature, leading to beautiful states of joy, peace, wonder, and love — connection with oneself, one another, and the larger web of life. This workshop is appropriate for both beginning and experienced meditators.

Women's Visionary Summit, October 14 – 16, 2022 with Lucy Caldwell and Christen Lien
Join together with fellow visionaries, change agents, and leaders to facilitate the next wave of women’s empowerment. Experience a culture of mentorship; learn from others across disciplines, diverse backgrounds, and generations; and be present in your physical body with the foundation of self-love. This summit is an opportunity for women and women-identifying individuals to collaborate and bring their own healing gifts to the world from a place of embodied truth, grace, courage, and compassion.

Writing & Mindfulness: Cultivating a Practice for Navigating Difficult Times, October 17 – 21, 2022 with Janis Cooke Newman
This experiential meditation retreat and writing workshop invites meditators and writers of all levels to delve deeply into both practices in a safe and supportive environment. Guided meditations designed to help you navigate times of crisis and nourish creativity are supported by daily journaling and free writing. Tap into your creative energy, bypass your internal judge, and bring out your most original and deeply felt work! 

To Realign: Open Floor Movement Practice, October 17 – 21, 2022 with Andrea Juhan
To realign with what is essential in ourselves is vital to living meaningfully with our own values and gifts. During this week of retreat and focused play, you’ll be invited to reevaluate and renew through Open Floor Movement — a mindful movement practice that can be done at any level of fitness — within a supportive group process.

Harnessing the Power of Creation Through African Ritual, October 21 – 23, 2022 with Marques Redd
Both an important part of our global spiritual heritage and a powerful and effective mode of spiritual expression, traditional African rituals provide techniques for manifestation, fostering empowerment, affecting transformation, cultivating vitality, and expanding human consciousness. Come experience a variety of ritual modalities designed to enliven all senses, energize your intentions, and draw your desires. Return home with a variety of potent ritual tools to empower your life!

Grief Dancer, October 21–23, 2022 with Lucia Horan and Peter Selwyn
How do you process profound loss? Many of us have not found effective ways of expressing grief and as a result, we carry the cumulative weight of our unfinished business with us everywhere. Movement, story sharing, and supportive presence will help you move through grief and into the next phases of your life.

Yoga Nidra Retreat: Rest, Restore, and Remember Who You Really Are (Your True Self), October 24–28, 2022 with John Vosler
Yoga Nidra is a path to that liminal state of being between waking and sleeping. This is where you can systematically release your physical, emotional, and mental tensions to restore the body, clear the mind, and shift the habitual patterns that hold you back. Cultivate new tools, knowledge, and intentions to help you negotiate those stressful, confusing times when you forget who you truly are.

Esalen® Massage: The Basics, October 28–30, 2022 with Brita Ostrom and Vicki Topp
Whether you’re a novice or professional, this workshop will guide you through the basic concepts of Esalen Massage in a pleasant, easy-to-follow format. With brief lecture demonstrations and plenty of at-the-table guidance, the instructors will offer the essential elements, highlighting the foundational long, integrating strokes and gentle stretches.

Honoring the Ancestors: Tending Those That Came Before, Blessing That Which Is to Come, October 30 – November 4, 2022 with Gitanjali Hemp
We are part of a continuum, poised between the past and future — living in this present moment while carrying the legacy of the gifts and burdens of all of those who came before. Join us for a time of teachings, meditative and reflective practices, energy healing, ceremony, and ritual. We will honor and begin healing our relationship to the ancestral fields and shift the patterns of our ingrained conditioning to choose a new way forward together. 

Art As A Spiritual Path: Discovering Your Creative Mandala, October 31 – November 4, 2022 with Paul Heussenstamm
Whether you’ve never painted before or you’re looking for a new way to expand your creativity, painting a mandala (a geometric figure representing the universe in Hindu and Buddhist symbolism) is a gentle entry into the left brain hemisphere that helps reveal the artist within each of us. As a genuine form of meditation, it can open your heart, calm your mind, and even has the capacity to expand consciousness.

Relational Gestalt Practice: Open Seat Intensive, November 4–11, 2022 with Dorothy Charles
Using a Gestalt approach, learn skills to improve your ability to make contact with, develop, and track your emotions and sensations. In this workshop, we will learn to express ourselves and communicate our needs and wants effectively. With the support of the group, each participant will have an individual “open seat” session with Dorothy and we will practice Gestalt awareness as well as didactic and experiential exercises. Read more in this Esalen Spotlight interview.

Alert: Workshop Space Available! 

Ready to renew and jumpstart your metamorphosis this summer? These upcoming programs still have openings. Reserve now before they fill up!

More On-Campus Workshops

We have even more workshops for healing and self-exploration. Enroll now, or join our waitlist!

Live Extended Education Program (LEEP)

What would happen if you pressed pause on your everyday life and gave yourself four full weeks to evolve and transform at Esalen? If you’re ready to take the LEEP, we’re accepting applications for these exciting programs.

Esalen® Massage Intensive: Presence and Practice, September 24 – October 21, 2022 with Brita Ostrom, Char Pias, and Dean Marson
Learn how to connect with others through the healing touch of massage. ​​Esalen Massage melds hands-on technique with awareness practices, recognizing the unity of body, mind, and spirit. This is not a professional training course; however, professionals can refresh their technique. All students will receive an incredible array of new awarenesses and skills, including the ability to give a basic Esalen massage.

Integrative Gestalt Coaching, October 22 – November 18, 2022 with Perry Holloman
Integrative Gestalt Coaching™ (IGC) is a method developed by coach and bodyworker Perry Holloman over the last 40 years while living and working at Esalen. Ideal both for people wanting a month of self-exploration as well as those wanting to develop Gestalt Coaching skills to enhance their work, this well-rounded program will help you develop awareness of how your internal experience influences your relationships, and how your relationships transform you to powerfully impact the quality of your life.

“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?


If you’ve always wanted to visit Esalen but haven’t been able to find the room in your budget: Do you know about our scholarship program?

Learn More

About

Esalen Team

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