In April 2013, Esalen Institute hosted the annual Holistic Centers Gathering. Here is an interesting timeline about the development of the organisation…
1930 Michael Murphy was born in Salinas, CA and Dick Price was born in Chicago, IL.
1952 Murphy and Price graduated from Stanford University where each independently experienced transcendent moments and extraordinary spiritual experiences.
1956-1957 Murphy resided at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry, India and formulated an integral practice that engage mind, body, emotion, and spirit.
1956-1957 Price was involuntarily signed into Institute of Living and began to formulate his later focus on alternative therapies.
1960 Price and Murphy met at the Cultural Integration Fellowship in San Francisco.
1961 Price and Murphy moved to Murphy family property at Big Sur Hot Springs.
1962 Esalen Institute incorporated as a non-profit educational foundation that offered weekend seminars with Alan Watts, Aldous Huxley, and Ansel Adams and other artistic and intellectual luminaries.
1962 Charlotte Selver initiated the Esalen sensory awareness program that became the foundation for Esalen Massage.
1964 Ida Rolf developed structural integration bodywork at Esalen.
1963-1969 Fritz Perls gave Gestalt workshops at Esalen and lived at the Institute.
1962-1964 Abraham Maslow refined humanistic psychology in lectures and workshops at Esalen, but never lived there.
1965-1972 Will Schutz developed encounter groups and drew national attention to Esalen.
1965 George Leonard, former editor of Look joined Esalen leadership and became a major force at the Institute.
1964-1973 Esalen became the international hub of the Human Potential Movement.
1967-1976 Murphy established a small Esalen workshop center in San Francisco and moved to the Bay Area..
1969 The movie, Bob&Carol&Ted&Alice, a spoof on Esalen, became a movie box office hit.
1975-1985 Price led Esalen in Big Sur and focused on community, bodywork, and Gestalt Awareness practice.
1985 Price died while hiking, and Murphy recruited new leadership at Big Sur.
1998 El Nino destroyed hotsprings enclosures and a number of other areas, requiring costly rebuilding.
1998 Murphy established the semi-autonomous Center for Theory and Research related to an earlier, more informal sub-group.
1998 Key bodyworkers established the semi-autonomous Esalen Massage and Bodywork Association.
2003 A major leadership transition occurred as Gordon Wheeler became both CEO and President of the Esalen Board of Trustees.
2004 Esalen moved into the mainstream of the personal growth industry. Major figures from the Esalen community and Gestalt Awareness Practice withdrew and moved to other venues.
2013 Esalen host the annual Holistic Centers Gathering with 28 participants representing 20 different centers from Europe and North America.
Information courtesy of http://www.has.vcu.edu/wrs/profiles/Esalen.htm
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