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Stephan Schwartz discusses how human consciousness, focused awareness

Stephan Schwartz has been studying human consciousness for nearly 50 years. Much of his research has centered on the life of Edgar Cayce, a self-professed clairvoyant who answered questions on subjects as varied as healing, reincarnation and the after-life while allegedly in a self-induced trance. Schwartz believed the trance was necessary for Cayce, an evangelical…

With caribou as a guide, Van Hemert details a human-powered trip to the Arctic

More than once Caroline Van Hemert remarked that the philosophy behind a human-powered journey across Alaska with her husband Pat was to see and experience the land the way animals do. Her beautiful story was replete with accounts of encounters and sightings of various animals and birds. She shared the perilous confrontation with a predatory…

Vail Symposium tackles criminal justice reform in America

The beautiful Donovan Pavilion was the setting for an important–and at times alarming–discussion of criminal justice reform in America. Several of the most serious issues with the justice system resulted in a lively back and forth between our two speakers, legal scholar Clark Neily and prosecutor Ashley Morgan. The use, or misuse, of plea bargaining…

Director Pete McBride takes a sold-out crowd “Into the Canyon”

Turns out, hiking the length of the Grand Canyon is harder than it sounds. Pete McBride and Kevin Fedarko found that out the hard way. The award-winning documentary “Into the Canyon” follows the pair every step of the way on their quest to hike the Grand Canyon, even the missteps. The friendship the two share…

Dr. Kate Newburgh tackles the causes of burnout

Dr. Kate Newburgh began her program citing empirical evidence for the prevalence of burnout and the toll it takes on individuals and organizations. Rather than providing palliative tips and tricks for combating burnout, Newburgh then took the audience on a journey through history and social science to make the case that nothing short of reinventing…

What do the best ultra athletes have in common?

Courtney Dauwaulter and Josiah Middaugh dished to Vail Symposium On a planet with more than 7.5 billion people, it is incredible to be in the presence of two of the best in the world.¬†Courtney Dauwalter and Josiah Middaugh are two of the best at what they do: ultrarunning and off-road triathlons, respectively.¬† Throughout the evening…

Biggest crowd of winter season (so far) braves the elements for program on Iran

Dr. Abbas Milani and moderator Greg Dobbs The Vail Symposium promises to take audiences beyond the soundbites to really explore subjects in depth and on Monday, Jan. 13, we did just that. The topic of Iran is charged due, in large part, to many Americans’ memories of the long hostage drama in 1979-81. Professor Abbas…

Dr. Jonathan Metzl addresses how race impacts public health

With data that was empirical as well as observational, Dr. Jonathan Metzl laid out the case that efforts to block Medicaid expansion or cut education spending, driven by deep-seated racial bias, ended up hurting whites and minorities alike. In a side-by-side comparison between two demographically-similar states, Kentucky and Tennessee, Medicaid expansion in the former led…

Author Eric Lichtblau addresses capacity crowd with story of Freddy Mayer

Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Eric Lichtblau addressed a capacity crowd at The Sebastian Vail on Sunday, Dec. 29. Many stories of heroism from WWII have been lost to history–Lichtblau was able to bring to life the heroic story of Freddy Mayer. Mayer was a holocaust refugee who became an undercover OSS agent behind enemy lines in Nazi-occupied…

Vail Symposium season spices up with spirited impeachment program

Contentious would be putting it mildly. The Vail Symposium took on the topic of impeachment and it was a lively and, at times, feisty conversation. Local attorney Rohn Robbins opened the program providing background information about impeachment and the concerns of lawmakers at the time of the drafting of the Constitution. Of paramount importance to…