FORA Culture

Season 2007 Episode 0521

Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion

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Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion
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Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion with Jeffrey Kripal.Esalen has always been on the edge. Famous for its natural hot springs and stunning locale on the face of the Pacific coastline, the institute has long been a world leader in alternative and experiential education. Many luminaries have gathered there to develop their revolutionary ideas, transformative spiritual practices, and innovative art forms.In his new book, Jeffrey Kripal recounts the spectacular history of Esalen and its birth in the American counterculture. Forged in the literary and mythical leanings of the Beat Generation, inspired in the lecture halls of Stanford by radical scholars of comparative religion, the institute was the remarkable brainchild of Michael Murphy and Richard Price. Set against the heady backdrop of California during the revolutionary 1960s, Esalen recounts in fascinating detail how these two maverick thinkers sought to fuse the spiritual revelations of the East with the scientific revolutions of the West, or to combine the very best elements of Zen Buddhism, Western alchemy, and Indian yoga particularly in its Tantric forms into a decidedly utopian vision that rejected the dogmas of conventional religion - Cody's Booksmoreless
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