What is a reunion of est without sharing?

Welcome to a reunion of ideas. Reminisce with others about a unique time in our culture and about the est Training that continues to impact our lives everyday. Studies of transformational programs that began with est show that 7 out of 10 people found the programs to be one of their life's most rewarding experiences. This blog is evidence of the enduring difference the program has made in people’s lives. This is a gathering place for you to share what the est training provided for you, your career, your family, friends, and communities, then and now.

What did you create out of the est Training?

Terry Etter
I took the training in a ballroom of a hotel in Anaheim in 1976. The training changed the rest of my life. So many stories from relationships that work to making a difference with the high school kids I work with. Thank you.

John Brandon

I took est once in Boston, and helped give it one other time, also in Boston. Summary: It changed my life and made me a better person. I’ve had a great career, my son/partner and I recently sold our business, and I am moving out of the country to our place in Antigua next year. est was and is a big part of who I am, and I thank Werner Erhard and the trainers for that.

Werner certainly does not need another accolade. His life’s work speaks for itself. In some small way, this is my tribute.

The year was 1973 and I was about to begin medical school in Philadelphia. EST was far from main stream and essentially unknown in Philly. Nick, a friend from NYC excitedly called me about this experience he’d had and I just ’had to do it’.

Nick and I had been to Europe that Summer and I knew him to be a really cool guy with his head on straight. Without much questioning, I enrolled and went to New York for ’the training’.

Now, 43 years later, reflecting back on my life, that Summer defined so much of what I was able to become and make a difference to the world around me.

What is an accomplishment? A successful 27 year marriage with two great, fearless kids who are also making a difference in their world? Caring for patients and watching their lives change course for the better? Helping bring new medical treatments to market? Lecturing to thousands of fellow physicians about the connection between emotions and health? Creating (directly or indirectly) over 2000 jobs, many of which gave employees new opportunities to better their lives?

I have often reflected on the ’cosmic joke’ and the power it gave me and others as I passed the message on about the freedom of choice. The experiential part of ’the training’ permeated my work and opened me up to a richer more fulfilling life of professional and personal adventure.

We live in a World that could not have been anticipated 43 years ago. Time, however, has not changed the human challenges and fundamental issues.
What we learned, what we experienced is as relevant today as then.

Thank you Werner for creating a unique experience that taught one psychiatrist to embrace and appreciate life in ways he’d never imagined. And, thank you from the countless numbers of people I was able to touch, and will never know that much of that power came from a two weekend experience a young man took before entering medical school.

Murray H Rosenthal DO FAPA

I took the training in 1976 in Denver. At the end when ”I got it” I laughed really really hard and long. It freed me. Woohoo. In the exercise in the closet with all the clothes, I realized I was an opera singer. Went back to school, studied with Miss Blanche Thebom of the Metropolitan Opera, moved to Europe lived and sang. I have performed many concert fund raisers for St Jude’s Children’s Hospital and our local Domestic Violence organization. My 3 children all took the kids training as did my husband.

I currently have a large studio where I touch children with music instruction. And some adults too, I am PASSIONATE about my teaching.
I give talks to groups about “how to make life work,” music etc.

I still do the relaxation process– find a space in your left foot,etc… I still laugh when I look at those with watches and remember how up tight we all got about giving up our time pieces. Ha
Limitations that I thought I had disappeared in 1976. I vowed to live my life with passion and integrity. I began to run half marathons when I was 65 I am now 70 and have run 10 half marathons for charity and several shorter races all for charity.
So if any of you think your getting old or has been just remember the power of your influence in the world is huge. Thank you all for your participation and glad we all made it the bathroom break! :))
Thank you Werner. Your gift to me is valued and treasured.
Cathryn Bishop

I got my relationship with my mother. She has passed away, and I still have something I wouldn’t have had without est. My mom and I never got along when I was younger. We still had our squabbles, but it wasn’t nearly as intense, and at her passing, I could say that we were complete. I am able to do things that I don’t think I would have been able to do otherwise….Oh, I could go on!



I took the Feb 1978 training in New York and after that It helped me in my work as a people trainer in Speed Reading, Study Methods and Memory Training and as a pro bono Healing Practitioner. It showed me to live is to help and that personal satisfaction comes from helping not receiving.

Benjamin E Bernier Renta

Adele Montenegro

When I took the est Training (1973). I was a nun on 12 prescribed tranquilizers a day. After the first weekend I was on none. I went on to gather the strength to leave the convent and construct a happy, fruitful life. After 40 years of teaching, I retired and am now a happy Buddhist, living a fairly contemplative life in a small vacation house in the mountains. I am happy and empowered. Better than that, I have helped others do the same.
Thanks, Werner. I remember you with joy.

Robert Germano

I took the est Training in 1978 because my incredible boss (school principal) Linda Vargas kept sharing about it with me. Soon after that my mother, father, and two brothers took it, and from there it spread out to other family and friends. It gave us a new ”lease” on our relationship as family.

I remember the Sunday evening in Long Beach not long after my own Training that I went to the graduation of my significant other. The person leading our session wrote on the chalkboard the word ”CONTRIBUTION”. This word scared the hell out of me! It sounded like a sentence! I was only 22, and I wanted a life filled with fun.

That moment was the beginning of a rocky and sometimes perilous journey that led me through peaks and valleys and endless searching and yearning.

About 12 years ago I finally ”got it”. Years after having stopped ”participating”. Years after course upon course upon course, the little brown book of Aphorisms finally made sense!

The most poignant and memorable moments in the journey were A World that Works for Everyone with No One Left Out, The Nature of Reality Course, and the Curso de Comunicación and Foro Landmark given with the depth and intensity that only Hortensia and Hugo could possible bring to bear. OH HOW I MISS THEM!

I live in the Southern Cone now, far from any seminar or course, but almost daily I remember the intense love and sense of purpose that est gave me.

With much appreciation!


Angeles Ramos

My participation in the est Training was one of the most impactfull experiences of my life. What followed in the process of time itself was a series of trully unprecedented accomplishments that, prior to my participation, I could have ever imagined possible producing for myself.

David Armstrong

Do you know Roger Armstrong – Forum Leader and est Trainer?
You may remember Roger, as that Landmark Forum Leader or est Trainer that touched you in seminar room years ago, or perhaps he has been a coach, friend or co-worker.

As his son, I have experienced all of the above.

Roger was planning on having shoulder replacement surgery in December and just found out that he has to have open-heart surgery to replace a damaged aortic heart valve. He will be in surgery on November 29th, the day after Thanksgiving.

Dad spent 25 years as an est / Forum leader, before retiring 9 years ago, and we want to invite everyone to give back to Roger. Please leave comments, tell stories, and keep him in your prayers as he goes through open-heart surgery, works his way through recovery, and then has shoulder replacement surgery.

– See more at:

« Newer PostsOlder Posts »