Monday, June 29, 2015

August Sixth Annual Group Show Orland Art Center Gallery August 7 - August 29

Sixth Annual Group Show
 August 7 - August 29, 2015

Juried from entries all over the northstate, this show features
stunning selections from 20 different artists who made it through
the judging process. An exciting, multi-faceted mixture of techniques,
themes, and artistic styles fills the gallery for summer's last show.

Artists' Reception Friday, August 7, 2015  3:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Slip out of the summer heat and enjoy the cooling melodies
of pianist Melania Raygoza, while you meet the artists and eat
the sweet fruits of summertime! 

Linger over refreshments, entertainment, and conversation and make an evening of it!

Orland Art Center Gallery
732 4th St. Orland, CA 95963
Tuesdays through Saturdays, 1 to 7p. m. during each 3 week show.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Mechanical Quilt - Lynne Pillus Orland Art Center Gallery July 3 through July 25

The Mechanical Quilt -  Lynne Pillus
  July 3 through July 25, 2015
  A fascinating fusion of fabric Fine Art and today’s mechanized world. Fine Art quilter
  Lynne Pillus captures the movement and motion of the many machines used every day in factories
   and farms across the land.
  Friday,  July 3  Artists Reception 3:00 - 7:00 p.m.
 Refreshments and live music
 Young musician Melania Raygoza at our baby grand piano.
  Pop in Friday and meet the artists, or linger over refreshments, entertainment, and conversation and make an evening of it!

Orland Art Center Gallery
732 4th St. Orland, CA 95963
Tuesdays through Saturdays, 1 to 7p. m. during each 3 week show.

Oroville, California lies in the middle of farming country north of Sacramento. It's also home to Fine Art Quilter Lynne Pillus. Over the years, many small family farms have disappeared from the area. One of the sad reminders of their exodus is the vast array of farm machinery left behind. Lynne was intrigued by the rusting equipment languishing beside fields left fallow by their departing owners.

The artist saw those empty homesteads and their abandoned machines as an important piece in the fabric of the early days of America. It seemed logical to use color and cloth to honor that heritage by giving those machines bold new life.

Lynne's quilting career began with traditional quilts, but in the course of 25 years, she was always experimenting with new techniques, unusual fabrics, and a variety of combinations, searching for her own personal style. Inspired by the machinery in those vacant fields, she found it.

Using a quilting technique known as fused, raw-edge applique, Lynne Pillus skillfully captures the movement and motion of the many machines, old and new, used every day in factories and farms across the land.

Her vividly colored quilts pulse with the strength of the farming way of life that Lynne strives to honor. Using rich colors, strong shapes, and design as intricate and fascinating as the machinery that inspired its creation, Lynne Pillus is an artist who definitely speaks in her own voice.

Meet this delightfully entertaining artist and watch her demonstrate and discuss her creative quilting style at the Orland Art Center Gallery's

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

How To Be An Earthling, Wes Nisker on Mindfulness Meditation and Modern Science Saturday, August 22, 2015

How To Be An Earthling, Wes Nisker on Mindfulness Meditation and Modern Science

Saturday, August 22, 2015, 10 am to 4pm

United Methodist Church, 2311 Buena Vista, Alameda, CA

In this day together we make creative use of classic Buddhist meditation techniques in order to explore and embody our lives as interconnected earthlings.

The talks and discussions will present both traditional Buddhist views of self and reality, as well as some of the latest information from evolutionary biology and psychology to support and guide the meditations. The daylong will include plenty of poetry, and a little crazy wisdom as well.

Wes Nisker is an author of two bestselling books, founder and co-editor of "Inquiring Mind" and a teacher at Spirit Rock and internationally.

Register at

Cost: This event is given on a donation basis to provide an opportunity to practice generosity and to make teachings available to all.

 Beginners as well as experienced practitioners will benefit from this day of guided practice. Please bring a bag lunch and wear comfortable clothing. For more information about the event or the Alameda Sangha please visit us at Stable Heart – Stable Climate Daylong

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Focus on Feeling -Monastic Daylong August 16, 2015

Focus on Feeling -Monastic Daylong

August 16, 2015 Sunday from 9:00 am to 430 pm

It is at the Oakland Asian Cultural Center at 388 9th Street,Oakland, Ca. 94607
Register through Eventbrite at their site

The teachings will be offered freely by Ayya Sobhana so attendance is by


Feeling — Vedana in the Pali language of early Buddhism — is the point where our emotional process becomes accessible to the conscious mind.  We learn from the Buddha’s teaching to see feeling as the trigger for craving, and also one of the easiest points where we can interrupt the cycle of craving, clinging and suffering. But how to get free from craving without an unhealthy detachment from our inner life?

In this daylong retreat we will aim to more fully know and experience feelings. We will appreciate what feeling is good for, how feeling helps us to focus, to decide, and to intuitively look after our own welfare and the welfare of who we care about.  We will make friends with emotional reaction, but from a wisdom point of view so there is lightness, balance and a sense of freedom whether the emotions are pleasurable or afflictive.

This retreat will continue Ayya Sobhana’s investigation of fundamental Dhamma in the light of modern neuroscience and new thinking about emotion. Informed by current ideas we can make the Dhamma less abstract, more meaningful and more helpful at any level of spiritual practice. Informed by the Dhamma, our psychological approach can be more powerful, directed beyond therapy to a fundamental transformation of the mind and heart … to awakening.  

Ayya Sobhana is the Prioress of Aranya Bodhi, a new community for monastic women located on the Sonoma Coast of California. Together with Ayya Tathaaloka Theri, Ayya Sobhana has been deeply involved int the recent restoration of Bhikkhuni full ordination in the Theravada tradition. She meditated and trained with Bhante Henepola Gunaratana since 1989 and stayed at the Bhavana Society in West Virginia from 2003 to 2010. She ordained in 2003 and obtained full Bhikkhuni ordination in 2006. Her primary practice is the Eightfold Noble Path, that is, integration of meditation with ethical living and compassionate relationships for the sake of liberation.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Missing link found between brain, immune system

Missing link found between brain, immune system -- with major disease implications

Implications profound for neurological diseases from autism to Alzheimer's to multiple sclerosis
  • Vessels directly connecting brain, lymphatic system exist despite decades of doctrine that they don't
  • Finding may have substantial implications for major neurological diseases
  • Game-changing discovery opens new areas of research, transforms existing ones
  • Major gap in understanding of the human body revealed
  • 'They'll have to change the textbooks'
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., June 1, 2015 - In a stunning discovery that overturns decades of textbook teaching, researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have determined that the brain is directly connected to the immune system by vessels previously thought not to exist. That such vessels could have escaped detection when the lymphatic system has been so thoroughly mapped throughout the body is surprising on its own, but the true significance of the discovery lies in the effects it could have on the study and treatment of neurological diseases ranging from autism to Alzheimer's disease to multiple sclerosis.
"Instead of asking, 'How do we study the immune response of the brain?' 'Why do multiple sclerosis patients have the immune attacks?' now we can approach this mechanistically. Because the brain is like every other tissue connected to the peripheral immune system through meningeal lymphatic vessels," said Jonathan Kipnis, PhD, professor in the UVA Department of Neuroscience and director of UVA's Center for Brain Immunology and Glia (BIG). "It changes entirely the way we perceive the neuro-immune interaction. We always perceived it before as something esoteric that can't be studied. But now we can ask mechanistic questions."
"We believe that for every neurological disease that has an immune component to it, these vessels may play a major role," Kipnis said. "Hard to imagine that these vessels would not be involved in a [neurological] disease with an immune component."
New Discovery in Human Body
Kevin Lee, PhD, chairman of the UVA Department of Neuroscience, described his reaction to the discovery by Kipnis' lab: "The first time these guys showed me the basic result, I just said one sentence: 'They'll have to change the textbooks.' There has never been a lymphatic system for the central nervous system, and it was very clear from that first singular observation - and they've done many studies since then to bolster the finding - that it will fundamentally change the way people look at the central nervous system's relationship with the immune system."
Even Kipnis was skeptical initially. "I really did not believe there are structures in the body that we are not aware of. I thought the body was mapped," he said. "I thought that these discoveries ended somewhere around the middle of the last century. But apparently they have not."
'Very Well Hidden'
The discovery was made possible by the work of Antoine Louveau, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in Kipnis' lab. The vessels were detected after Louveau developed a method to mount a mouse's meninges - the membranes covering the brain - on a single slide so that they could be examined as a whole. "It was fairly easy, actually," he said. "There was one trick: We fixed the meninges within the skullcap, so that the tissue is secured in its physiological condition, and then we dissected it. If we had done it the other way around, it wouldn't have worked."
After noticing vessel-like patterns in the distribution of immune cells on his slides, he tested for lymphatic vessels and there they were. The impossible existed. The soft-spoken Louveau recalled the moment: "I called Jony [Kipnis] to the microscope and I said, 'I think we have something.'"
As to how the brain's lymphatic vessels managed to escape notice all this time, Kipnis described them as "very well hidden" and noted that they follow a major blood vessel down into the sinuses, an area difficult to image. "It's so close to the blood vessel, you just miss it," he said. "If you don't know what you're after, you just miss it."
"Live imaging of these vessels was crucial to demonstrate their function, and it would not be possible without collaboration with Tajie Harris," Kipnis noted. Harris, a PhD, is an assistant professor of neuroscience and a member of the BIG center. Kipnis also saluted the "phenomenal" surgical skills of Igor Smirnov, a research associate in the Kipnis lab whose work was critical to the imaging success of the study.
Alzheimer's, Autism, MS and Beyond
The unexpected presence of the lymphatic vessels raises a tremendous number of questions that now need answers, both about the workings of the brain and the diseases that plague it. For example, take Alzheimer's disease. "In Alzheimer's, there are accumulations of big protein chunks in the brain," Kipnis said. "We think they may be accumulating in the brain because they're not being efficiently removed by these vessels." He noted that the vessels look different with age, so the role they play in aging is another avenue to explore. And there's an enormous array of other neurological diseases, from autism to multiple sclerosis, that must be reconsidered in light of the presence of something science insisted did not exist.
Published in Nature
The findings have been published online by the prestigious journal Nature and will appear in a forthcoming print edition. The article was authored by Louveau, Smirnov, Timothy J. Keyes, Jacob D. Eccles, Sherin J. Rouhani, J. David Peske, Noel C. Derecki, David Castle, James W. Mandell, Lee, Harris and Kipnis.
The study was funded by National Institutes of Health grants R01AG034113 and R01NS061973. Louveau was a fellow of Fondation pour la Recherche Medicale.
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