Esalen to Host 9th Annual Blue Mind Summit
Drs. Wallace J. Nichols, Shauna Shapiro and Dan Siegel lead an exploration of Blue Mindfulness June 28-30 in Big Sur

BIG SUR, CALIF. – May 17, 2019 – Nearly a decade ago, renowned marine biologist Dr. Wallace J. Nichols published the groundbreaking book Blue Mind and helped increase awareness of water’s positive impact on our emotional, physical and spiritual wellbeing.

This June, Nichols will be joined for the first time by mindfulness expert Dr. Shauna Shapiro and neuropsychiatrist Dr. Daniel Siegel for the 9th Annual Blue Mind Summit to be held at Esalen Institute. The summit leaders will combine contemplative practice with science and Blue Mind to create the experience of Blue Mindfulness for workshop participants.

“I can’t imagine a better location in the world to combine the benefits of water and mindfulness than Esalen,” says Nichols. “We will explore the intersection of Dan, Shauna and my work and how nature can serve as medicine for our emotional health.”

The workshop will feature practical discussions on the practices of Blue Mindfulness as well as opportunities for participants to experience first-hand the healing impact of water at Esalen, which is the focal point of three sources: fresh, salt water, and mineral.

In addition to experiential learning, summit leaders hope to issue a position paper at the conclusion of the event to highlight the critical need to connect mindfulness work to the environment. “My hope is that this summit will be a way for us to help protect the environment,” observes Shapiro. “We need to understand how we are all connected.”

“One of the causes of human suffering, of planetary suffering, is our sense of disconnection,” adds Siegel. “We are hungry for something we can’t name. This will be a life-transforming weekend, bringing us back to the true nature of our origin and perhaps provide a pathway to healing for self and planet.”  

Shapiro and Siegel have previously led workshops at Esalen on the power of awe, wonder, empathy, mindfulness, and meditation to strengthen resilience, compassion and wisdom.  

For more information, including registration details, please visit:

About Esalen
Founded in 1962, Esalen is a nonprofit center for exploring and realizing human potential through experience, education, and research. Esalen sponsors pioneering initiatives and offers personal, spiritual, and social transformation practices for workshop participants and residential staff.

Located on California’s scenic Big Sur coast, Esalen welcomes more than 12,000 students, seminarians, and visitors each year. It works toward the realization of a more just, creative, and sustainable world.

For more information, visit

About the Blue Mind Summits
This is the 9th Annual Blue Mind Summit, a unique, interdisciplinary, and intimate gathering of big thinkers, artists, change-makers, scientists, educators, leaders, athletes, and practitioners pioneering a new conversation about the true, full value of healthy waters and oceans.

Past summits have been held at the California Academy of Sciences (SF, CA); Jennette’s Pier (Outer Banks, NC); Block Island (RI); Bedruthan Steps (Cornwall, UK); Carnegie Institution for Science (Washington, DC); Asilomar State Park (Monterey, CA); University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (WI), Frost Science Museum (Miami, FL).