This desert landscape has long been an enclave of nature lovers, artists, seekers and misfits of every stripe, drawn as if by a magnetic vortex to its otherworldly landscape of weather-sculpted rocks and forests of the spindly icon for which the reputedly chill town is named.
In recent months, though, Joshua Tree’s peace has been shattered by a debate over a neighbors have been at each other’s throats over a local meditation retreat’s plan to jump on the desert music festival bandwagon — a decision its director this week said she would reverse, after the organization’s Desert Daze concert in October.
Nestled on a 400-acre spread along California 62, about 30 miles north of Palm Springs, the Institute of Mentalphysics has, since 1941, focused on teaching a combination of breathing techniques and spiritual awareness that its website calls “the science of the future” and a “Super Yoga.”
In March, however, the institute surprised the community by hosting its first rock festival.
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