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May 25th
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Local Talk

What should Obama have his sights set on in 2011?

What should Obama have his sights set on in 2011?


Obama should try to clean up the mess that was made before he was in office, get us out of Iraq and Afghanistan and bring our boys back home.

Jake Conda

Santa Cruz | Waiter


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Opinion

What's In a Word?

What's In a Word?

So, there I was, loping through the San Francisco Chronicle last week. (We may surf the web, but a more laid-back and contemplative verb is required for perusing a newspaper in print) and there I found the article, "Book lovers turn the page on a new year," about Bay Area calligrapher Georgianna Greenwood. Early in January every year, she hosts a ceremony at the Center for the Book in San Francisco; eschewing the whole notion of New Year's resolutions, she invites participants to choose a single word to express their attitude toward the coming year—hopes, dreams,  strategies, goals, coping mechanisms, whatever—and then draws or collages together a "talisman" to celebrate that idea. But the core is that word, one single word to express one's personal Zeitgeist for the new year.

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Astrology

Chinese New Year, Groundhog Day, New Moon, Candlemas

Chinese New Year, Groundhog Day,  New Moon, CandlemasThe recent controversy (unnecessary flap) around astrology was short lived and distracting. I received, as did many astrologers, hundreds of emails asking what was the truth. Here’s the information. There are two different types of astrology for two different parts of the world and two different types of mind – 1) tropical (for the western mind) & 2) sidereal or Vedic (for the eastern mind, religion, training and sensibilities). The tropical zodiac is based upon the seasons (using equinox and solstice points. Vedic astrology (or the sidereal zodiac) is based upon the zodiacal constellations. Though 24 degrees apart, both are correct yet different. This seems a paradox, but it’s not.
The winter months, January, February and March, can seem rather empty without the winter festivals.
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Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to the Editor

I’m a sucker for people making a positive difference, which is why you’ll be reading about a few locals who really shine in this week’s cover story. Truth is, sometimes it’s rare to come across a group of dynamic people whose individual efforts create a positive ripple effect. But those spotlighted this week—Analicia Cube, Doron Comerchero, Deutron Kebebew and Cliff Hodges—are a real treat. Cube gave birth to Take Back Santa Cruz, a collective of locals who gathered on a Facebook group page that have united the community in response to, and against, “drugs, gangs and abusive behavior” throughout Santa Cruz.
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Local Talk

What are your thoughts on WikiLeaks and Julian Assange?

What are your thoughts on WikiLeaks and Julian Assange?

He's providing a very important service for the country, if not the world. Unfortunately we live in a system that really demands questions and one that often doesn't provide answers. This is a vehicle maybe for that kind of freedom of thought and expression that probably can't be obtained in any other way.

Andrew Duvin

San Francisco | Professor of Education

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Opinion

The Lesson of WikiLeaks

The Lesson of WikiLeaks

There’s a big lesson stemming from Wikileaks—and it’s not really a political one. Actually, there’s a lesson for us all.

Some are outraged over the documents that have now become public; others are overjoyed that “the truth” has come out.

But the overriding lesson goes far beyond that. We are now living in a Wikileaks world.

It’s hard to gauge what damage, if any, will be done by the Wikileaks revelations. Has the release of classified information been damaging—or is it just embarrassing?

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Astrology

Move Forward, Step Back: Jupiter in Aries, Saturn Retrogrades

Move Forward, Step Back:  Jupiter in Aries, Saturn Retrogrades Sun enters Aquarius, Thursday (Mayahma, the Buddhist New Year). We leave the mountaintop of Capricorn and enter Aquarius, sign of serving humanity, to serve and in Pisces, to save. Saturday Jupiter enters Aries, an important shift, preparing us for Uranus’ entrance into Aries, March 11. Aries is “all things new,” Jupiter expands, Uranus revolutionizes. Together they create “new ideas that become ideals” that bring forth the new culture and civilization. Helping us assess this is Saturn, Dweller on the Threshold, demanding discipline and attention to structure, retrograding (review before the new arrives) in Libra (creating Right Relations, new, sustainable, practical economic model). Saturn retros at 17.14 degrees (till June 12, Pentecost, Holy Spirit as tongues of fire, new information, new minds, virtues and gifts to create the new world). It’s an exciting time.
News & Notes: 1. The Tucson shooting informs us we need to teach ahimsa (Sanskrit/Hindu for “do no harm”). 2. With flooding in Brazil and Australia, the destruction of the banana plant (New Yorker, Jan. 10, 2011, “We Have No Bananas”), along with the many other compromised crops around the world), everyone needs greenhouses—on balconies, patios, rooftops, in back yards, blocks and neighborhoods, creating  “greenhouse communities.” Cows and chickens, pigs and sheep, and llamas, too.

Esoteric Astrology as News for the week of Jan. 20–26, 2011 for Sun and Rising Signs

Aries-March 21–April 20
What’s happening in your home, with family and loved ones? Something from the past needs tending, a new structure perhaps, new disciplines. Created with love, of course. How is your biological family influencing your life now? Each of us, within our families, has the spiritual task of healing generational family wounds  (Chiron)—a Soul contract—the purpose of our lives. Love (the heart of sacrifice) that understands this.

Taurus
April 21–May 21
You’re the focus, speaker, leader, facilitator of the community/village you live within. You have patience with individual emotional vicissitudes, understand behavior patterns and different ray structures. You have the capacity to see the whole picture containing the many smaller ones. Your abilities bring individuals together, help them identify as a group that, trying your patience at times, eventually (through resistance) forms community.

Gemini
May 22–June 20
The impulse, the message, the (Hierarchical) impressions being placed upon you to travel to a community (not anyone, a specific one) is becoming greater. What is needed by you to follow this impress? Many of us are being “impressed” these days, by greater intelligences who, observing us, know what we need, know what others need, know who can fulfill those needs. You could perhaps consider that you are needed elsewhere. Ponder this.

Cancer
June 21–July 20
You are participating in something with family, something personal? You continue to return to a place that either needs you or you need it. Perhaps, and most likely, it is both. You feel serious about a family situation, make plans to bring more discipline. The next six months you will consider the needed changes to be made. You will consider the direction, meaning and purpose of your life. A new direction will be taken.

Leo
July 21–August 22
Have you found your thoughts more serious, more concerned with rules and regulations? Are you feeling restricted by a certain relationship? Do you feel the need to run away, far away? Is someone or something waiting for you there? Is work more serious and is change needed there? Do you seek community to fulfill relationship needs? Something new will happen soon. Surprising.

Virgo
August 23–September 22
Take seriously the idea that you are of deep value. Also, be aware how your money and resources are used need reviewing. Is there enough to continue with your present/past lifestyle? If not, what needs to be changed, restrained, revitalized, added? And how can these be accomplished? Each day is filled with tasks. Each day changes, no matter how you plan. Remember you hold hidden within new realities.

Libra
September 23–October 22
Soon you’ll feel a shift deeply inward, lasting for about six months, where you assess responsibilities, review self-identity and participate in the total transformation of the beliefs that have held you for so long. Your future is in the roots of the plants that you grow. So, as I wrote last week, begin your garden with herbs, medicinals, flowers (edible) and vegetables. Include fruit trees. Begin a writing, drawing garden journal.

Scorpio
October 23–November 21
It’s a good time to ask yourself Scorpio’s most potent questions. Always you seek the truth and your truth creates your philosophy, which constantly changes. Searching within, realigning beliefs and values, ask yourself what goals and dreams you hold. Any left? Sometimes disappointment destroys them. You want reality. Our morning meditations’ prayer: “Let reality govern our every thought. And truth be the master of our lives.”

Sagittarius
November 22–December 20
Is your mind racing, full of future ideas and possibilities? Is there a bit of recriminatory thinking, of things you failed to do in the recent past? Shafts of both darkness and light flit through your life. These are the elements you are made of. I read a line of poetry by John Donne the other day that reminded me of you. “I am cunningly made, a universe of elements.” You hold not only your own, but others as well. This new year will be a surprise.

Capricorn
December 21–January 20
As you continue to transform internally, your sense of self and communication transform, too. Be aware that Mercury is in your sign. Mercury in Cap can sound harsh to others. Astrologers know it’s not harshness, but practicality. Most of humanity isn’t astrology-wise or practical (yet). You may turn this upon yourself. I caution you. Don’t be (self-) critical. It’s destructive and separates you from life. Turn the criticism to self-praise creating value.

Aquarius
January 21–February 18
You’re in the community, sensing, discovering values and resources, assessing their usefulness in terms of your daily life and needs. There’s a quiet transformation taking place. You’re asking deep questions, the answers of which will alter the patterns of daily life. There are special friends around who you trust and care for. They laugh at you. However they also respect you. A life could be built around your collective dreams, hopes/wishes.


Pisces
February 19–March 20
A spiritual presence is making itself known, perhaps through your acts of kindness & care, sacrifice and love. It’s good to tell others about your spiritual tasks. That before you die (and that could be years from now), you are to have Right Relations with everyone and with all kingdoms. With this promise, by living within this standard of values, you increase your worth, authority, happiness and joy. Life then follows.


Risa is Founder & Director of the Esoteric & Astrological Studies & Research Institute, a contemporary Wisdom School in Santa Cruz, CA.

More at nightlightnews.com. Risa's email: [email protected] Facebook: Risa's Esoteric Astrology
Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to the Editor

What are you going through? What are you trying to get over? Is the only way out through? I can go on about all this but it’s best to steer you toward this week’s cover story in which writer Kim Luke takes a look at Santa Cruz, its people and the penchant to dig deep and, hopefully, not only “know thyself,” but heal thyself as well. All this is explored in classic Ms. Luke fashion—with humor and insight. Enjoy the ride. (Personally, I cannot stomach picking any more emotional lint out of my navel. I need a reprieve, a vacation from always “looking within” lest I implode with self-awareness overload.

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Local Talk

What businesses should go into the Rittenhouse Building in Santa Cruz?

What businesses should go into the Rittenhouse Building in  Santa Cruz?
I'd like to see a quality music venue on this corner. We could use another venue in Santa Cruz that had Blues, R&B, Reggae— just the whole genre of music to give us better alternatives for music.
Jimmie Brown
Santa Cruz | CSO
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Astrology

I Have Been to the Mountaintop

I Have Been to the Mountaintop

We are in our last week of Capricorn, sign of the mountaintop. It’s Martin Luther King, Jr’s. birthday (observed) Monday. He’s famous for saying, “I’ve been taken to the mountaintop.” King was a Capricorn, the sign of the Initiate who, seeing the world from the mountaintop, and humanity suffering, returns to the world to serve.

Up on another mountaintop, Meditation Mount in Ojai, California (location of the 1937 Frank Capra film, Lost Horizons, from James Hilton’s book about Shangri La, a mysterious valley) weekly Wednesday evening “Conversations For the Common Good” resume, 7 p.m., Jan. 19. (meditationmount.org.)

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Gate Openers

Up-and-coming artists like Ryan Bingham are a great reason to show up early to the Santa Cruz American Music Festival

 

Gemini Sun, Pentecost, Shavuot—Enlightenment and Gladness

As the sun enters Gemini on Sunday, sign of speaking, communication, thinking, inter-relations, writing and understanding languages, the feast days of Pentecost & Shavuot (Catholic and Jewish festivals) occur. During Pentecost’s 50 days after Easter, tongues of fire appear above the heads of the disciples, providing them with the ability to understand all languages and all feelings hidden in the minds and hearts of humanity. It’s recorded that Pentecost began with a loud noise, which happened in an upper room (signifying the mind). The Christ (World Teacher) told his disciples (after his ascension) when encountering a man at a well carrying a water pot (signs for Age of Aquarius) to follow him to an upper room. There, the Holy Spirit (Ray 3 of Divine Intelligence) would overshadow them, expand their minds, give them courage and enable them to teach throughout the world, speaking all languages and thus able to minister to the true needs of a “seeking” humanity. Pentecost (50 days, pentagram, Ray 5, Venus, concrete and scientific knowledge, the Ray of Aquarius) sounds dramatic, impressive and scary: The loud noise, a thunderous rush of wind and then “tongues of fire” above the heads of each disciple (men and women). Fire has purpose. It purifies, disintegrates, purges, transforms and liberates (frees) us from the past. This was the Holy Spirit (Ray 3, love and wisdom) being received by the disciples, so they would teach in the world and inform humanity of the Messiah (Christ), who initiated the new age (Pisces) and gave humanity the new law (adding to the 10 Commandments of the Aries Age) to Love (Ray 2) one another. Note: Gemini is also Ray 2. Shavuot is the Jewish Festival of Gladness, the First Fruits Festival celebrating the giving of the 10 Commandments to Moses as the Aries Age was initiated. Thus, we have two developmental stages here, Jewish festival of the Old Testament. Pentecost of the New Testament. We have gladness, integrating both.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Off Her Meds

Kristin Wiig runs wild—and transcends her sketch comedy roots—as a truly strange character ‘Welcome to Me’
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Flats Bistro

Pizza with an artisan twist comes to Aptos Beach

 

What’s your take on Santa Cruz locals?

Santa Cruz locals are really friendly once you know them. I think a lot of them have a hard time leaving, and I would too. Ryan Carle, Santa Cruz, Biologist

 

Soquel Vineyards

If Soquel Vineyards partners Peter and Paul Bargetto and Jon Morgan were walking down the street wearing their winning wine competition medals, you’d hear them coming from a mile away. This year was particularly rewarding for the Bargettos and Morgan—they won two Double Gold Medals and five Gold Medals at January’s San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

 

Enlightened Flavors

Squash & Blossom’s artisanal alternative-flour delights, beet kvass from Cafe Ivéta, and the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival