Let Go into the Mystery: The East Shield of Living and Dying


Oct 2nd, 2021 - Oct 10th, 2021 | Eureka Valley, California | Scott Eberle, Cynthia Morrow | Living the Practices

Throughout time and cultures, people have crossed borders of their ordinary lives seeking contact with the Mystery. An experience of Oneness, it is beyond any fixed identity. Called by many names, known in a myriad of ways, yet it is ungraspable. In the wide-open view of this Mystery, living and dying are fundamentally interdependent. So too is our recognition of being wholly and completely interconnected with it all.

In this age, we are born and shaped within a world that is ego-centered and ego-driven. There is enormous suffering in believing in the myth of our separate selves. When we hold tightly to an identity focused on self-preservation, we find only more fear, aggression, over-consumption, over-work, confusion and deep loneliness. The spiritual opening of the East Shield offers an expansiveness that allows us to relax within this interwoven matrix of reality.

What might it mean for you to explore this East Shield?  To “Let Go into the Mystery”?

Program Overview: This 9-day program, in the vast and ancient landscape of Eureka Valley, is a ceremony in the East Shield of the School’s Practice of Living and Dying. This is an invitation to explore and honor the individual stories of our spiritual unfolding through life, and to let go into the Great Mystery that holds us beyond birth and death. 

To support the busy mind to settle each day will include periods of sitting meditation. We will gather in council daily, holding space for the sharing and witnessing of stories. Afternoons will include time for walking in the expansive desert to explore each of the four directions of Mystery, culminating with a day in the East: a 24-hour solo. When we reconvene, we’ll then spend several days hearing stories from this solo time. 

Program Questions Contact: Scott Eberle at [email protected]


TUITION: $700 - $1,125

Sliding Scale: To honor the vast difference of financial resources among us, all of our program tuition is based on a sliding scale. We set forth no criteria and ask that you pay what is appropriate for your circumstances and access to financial resources. You can see recommendations on using the sliding scale here. If the low end of the sliding scale is still too much, scholarship assistance is available , please reach out to the office for more info.

Cancellations: Cancellations are hard on the participant, the School, and the guides. We respect the unpredictability of life, and we are diligent about running an organization sustainably.

-If you cancel 60 or more days prior to the start date of your program, you will receive a full refund of any tuition paid, minus any deposits.

-If you cancel 59 days or less prior to the start date of your program, and we can fill your spot, then you will receive a full refund of any tuition paid, minus any deposits.

-If we cannot fill your spot, and you cancel within 59 days of the start of your program, then we hold you accountable for paying the tuition at the lowest end of the sliding scale.

Submit enrollment form

 Please fill out and submit the enrollment form and then pay the program deposit below. Before you pay the deposit, please read deposit section below, all deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable. After your enrollment form is complete, please submit all health and liability forms.

Pay program deposit

Deposits: This deposit signifies your commitment to the program and is deducted from the tuition balance. All deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable. They cover the work of the specific course you signed up for, including all communication involved as well as the fee that guides pay to the school administration for the course accounting. 

Additional Deposit: Some programs require a second deposit to help us affirm commitments. Last minute cancellations make it hard to fill openings and incur a loss of income to the School and the guides.

Tuition Balance: Balance of tuition can be paid before or upon arrival. Simply deduct any deposits made from the amount you’ve chosen on the sliding scale.

Submit Waitlist form

This program is full; however, you may add your name to the Waitlist by clicking the Waitlist button below.

Additional course details & Materials


We will rendezvous on Saturday, October 2nd, at 10 a.m. in Big Pine, California, moving from there to our basecamp in the backcountry east of town in the Eureka Valley. We anticipate camping together the entire week, finishing by mid-morning on Sunday, October 10th. If the pandemic requires us to limit enrollment to a smaller group, we may finish a day early. We will provide dinner the first night and the break-fast after the solo time. More detailed logistical information will be sent out prior to the program’s start.

You will be responsible for bringing your own food and equipment, though we can provide some gear if needed. We ask everyone to come prepared to live self-sufficiently. You will need to bring shelter and clothing suitable for a full range of inclement weather. 

All participants must submit the required health questionnaire and liability form.

If you have questions about the enrollment process contact us at [email protected] or call 760-938-3333.

There is no required reading for this program.

We will be camping in the remote Eureka Valley an hour east from Big Pine. This valley is land of the Nüümü Tümpisattsi who were forced by white settlers and the US government onto reservations in the area. Bordering Death Valley, this desert valley is wide open and surrounded by the Inyo and Last Chance Mountains, with sand dunes at the south end that are the highest west of the Mississippi.

To learn more about our commitment to regenerative relationships please visit Cultural Relations.