October 24–28, 2018


The Mystery of Being

Dolce Hayes Mansion San Jose, CA

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious.
It is the source of all true art and science.
~ Albert Einstein

For most of human history we’ve been trying to comprehend who we are through the lens of spiritual traditions. Then the Age of Enlightenment ushered in science, giving us a powerful new way to look at ourselves. New disciplines such as cognitive neuroscience, evolutionary psychology, quantum physics and genetics are delivering fascinating findings, redefining our view of reality and human nature. At the same time there is a new conversation emerging in spirituality. We are challenging the traditional view of spirituality as esoteric, transcendent and removed from daily life.

This year at SAND we will be bringing together some of the brightest minds in science along with spiritual teachers from various traditions, to expand and deepen our understanding and experience of what it means to be human. Through these two lenses – of science and spirituality – we will be asking:

    • What does it means to be fully human and fully alive?

    • What can evolutionary biology, neuroscience, and psychology tell us about human behavior?

    • What are emotions, and how does trauma lodge in our bodies?

    • How does language shape the way we think and perceive reality?

    • What can we learn from the new science of psychedelics?

    • How are mathematics, physics and cosmology redefining reality?

Understanding our humanity, the very essence of who we are and how we live our lives, is one of the deepest mysteries and biggest challenges. As we move into this exploration, what emerges is a completely new relationship to our spiritual life and to our idea of what an integrated human being might look like. Embracing our humanness means including our limitations and shortcomings as well as our unlimited potential, our suffering as well as our wholeness. When our heart opens to all of it, the truth of who we are begins to shine. The spiritual search is over. There is no refuge but this moment. We become lovers of what is.

Join us for five days contemplating and celebrating our humanity!

Watch selected talks from SAND 18

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