Yossi Ghinsberg

Author, Philosopher, Visionary Speaker

Author of Heart of the Amazon, Yossi Ghinsberg speaks to corporations worldwide inspiring them to turn their visions into reality, despite adversity or unfavorable circumstances.

Born in Israel, Yossi served in the Navy for three years before setting off to backpack in South America.  However while traveling through the uncharted Amazon, Yossi found himself alone after losing his three companions.

Facing near-starvation, jungle rot, attacks by hornets and termites, torrential rains, slashing wounds and maddening loneliness, Yossi survived three harrowing weeks through sheer will and determination.

Profoundly affected by his ordeal and the understanding it provided of his life purpose, in 1986 Yossi released Heart of the Amazon.  A riveting account of his survival, Yossi's book quickly became an international best-seller and has since been translated into 6 languages and published in 15 countries.

After graduating from Tel Aviv University with degrees in Philosophy and Business, in 1992 Yossi returned to the Amazon to initiate The Chalalan Project.  One of the most celebrated Eco-Tourism resorts in the Amazon, Chalalan proved that the best strategy to conserve biodiversity is sustainable development in co-operation with indigenous forest dwellers.  

Initiating projects that helped form the biggest nature reserve in the Amazon, Yossi's work on the protection of intellectual properties and sustainable development won him international acclaim from such organizations as Conservation International, the World Resources Institute and The Inter-American Development Bank. 

Yossi is also the founder and director of EthnoBios S.A. a biodiversity prospecting company that is based in Bolivia.

In 1995, Yossi was appointed Vice President of The Center for Investigation & Treatment of Addiction (CITA).  Promoting a new approach to treatment of opiate addiction, Yossi established 12 treatment and research centers around the world.  In 1999 he also founded 'The Alma Libre Foundation.' Based in Australia, the foundation is  dedicated to assisting opiate addicts in their reintegration to society.

In 2001 during the peak of the Palestinian intifada, Yossi returned to Israel as CEO of a reconciliation festival. Managing to attract unprecedented audiences despite the escalation of violence, the festival saw spiritual leaders of Islam and Judaism conduct special prayers for peace, with the support of musicians  from around the world. 

In 2002, Yossi launched a self-help website called philosophyinaction.com. The first program on the site is an innovative, interactive smoking cessation program.

A riveting storyteller, Yossi's presentations delivered in his unassuming yet absorbing style inspire and motivate audiences to move towards their goals, despite adversity or unfavorable circumstances.

Yossi Ghinsberg talks about:

  • The Power to Survive: Recounting his tale of survival in the Amazon, Yossi encourages audiences to re-evaluate their attitudes. Teaching that the future is ours to shape and adaptation is the virtue of survival, Yossi's story is one of friendship, betrayal and inner strength.
  • The Holy Grail Story: Unveiling the secrets of the Holy Grail, Yossi presents the archetypal myth most relevant to the western world.  A story of vision, commitment and victory, Yossi challenges audiences to learn from their successes and failures.
  • My Philosophy of Life: Presenting stories and fables from different cultures, Yossi takes audiences on a journey in the tradition of a thousand and one nights.  Encouraging people to accept the nature of change, Yossi reinforces the belief that the truth is within.

Client testimonials

Touching, challenging and at all times entertaining, Yossi Ghinsberg seemingly invites the listener around his campfire as he recounts his near death tale. I have never seen a packed room of around 700 people to be totally absorbed at a convention session in my career.

National Insurance Brokers Association of Australia

Yossi's forte is his captivating and engaging storytelling ability, his endemic naivete and his ability to transform dreams to reality. Listening to Yossi is inspiring, and no audience could resist his passionate, emotive though humorous delivery.


Your address was perfectly suited to our overall event theme of 'continuos learning. Feedback received from the group was outstanding.

Nokia Telecommunications