Program for 2005
Click here for printer-friendly list of the 2005 program

Theme for 2005
Renaissance Visions

A Renaissance is recognized in history by the expression and use of ideas, values and technologies that appear new but reflect the knowledge and culture of older civilizations, seen through contemporary perspectives. Rediscovery of the heritage of the past is assimilated in a way that gives birth to something new and visionary and sows new seeds of cultural values and human endeavors. Thus, in this way a Renaissance excites the imagination, stirs artistic creativity and promotes experimentation with new modes of applying discoveries while acknowledging the accomplishments of those who have gone before. A Renaissance is embodied by outstanding exemplars of human potential; it draws together those who are willing to discard what has become stagnant for the sake of releasing creative vision. Renaissance visions give birth to fresh ways of looking at the world and its problems. Perhaps, moments of timeless transcendence may capture a glimpse of what is universal in value and accomplishment. Can a Renaissance, whether spiritual, social, artistic or scientific, contribute to the emergence of a world culture?
"Knowledge must be continually renewed by ceaseless effort if it is not to be lost." –Albert Einstein

Multimedia Presentation:
Sun Daggers, Sunquakes and Saturn:

Renaissance Discoveries in Astronomy

Saturday, January 22, 2005
7:30–9:30 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Presenter: Russ Lewin
Knowledge of ancient cultures is merged with modern science, as the astro-archaeology of Chaco Canyon is examined along with recent scientific findings concerning the Sun. Also to be explored will be current findings of the Cassini mission to Saturn and Titan. The careful understanding of ancient knowledge, together with the applied technology of modern science, suggest ideas about what it means to be a “Renaissance Thinker’ in 2005. Sun Dagger: Chaco Canyon was a rich cultural center for the ancient Anasazi. The architecture and petroglyphs reveal a remarkable understanding of astronomy. Of particular interest is the ‘Sun Dagger’ – petroglyphs inscribed behind stone slabs high atop Fajada Butte that function as a solar calendar. Shafts of light pass through gaps in the stones and pierce these rock carvings with daggers of light revealing with precision the times of the solstices and moon cycles. Sunquakes: Helioseismology, a modern branch of astronomy, studies why the surface of the Sun vibrates like a bell. Using solar oscillation data, scientists derived for the first time the thermal and dynamic properties of the solar interior and revealed its complicated rotational patterns. Saturn: The international spacecraft Cassini is currently orbiting the planet Saturn. The spacecraft is touring the giant planet, its mysterious moons, the stunning rings and its complex magnetic environment. Of specific interest is the moon Titan, which has its own environment and is believed to have large lakes and possibly an ocean beneath the cloudy atmosphere. A probe will land on the surface of Titan on January 14, 2005. Images and scientific data will be beamed back to Earth for study. We will view recent images on a large screen.

Aspirations and Inspirations of Women Artists

Saturday, February 19, 2005
2:00–5:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Presenter: Helena Hale
Helena Hale, One-Woman Theater, well known in Santa Barbara for her performances of dramatic portrayals of inspirational women artists, presents the life and work of Georgia O'Keeffe, Louise Nevelson, Mary Cassatt, Artemisia Gentileschio, Kaethe Kollwitz and Friedl Dicker-Brandeis.

Bumuntu Paradigm:
Traditional African Humanism and Its
Contribution to World Peace in the Post 911 Er
Saturday, March 19, 2005
2:00–5:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara, California
Speaker: Mutombo Nkulu-N’Sengha
The relevance of the traditional African vision of genuine humanness will be explored and presented as a foundation for rethinking the human condition in this era of a global war on violence and terror. An African critique of globalization will include suggestions on how the wisdom of the poor and marginalized offers important insights into the current crisis of humanity. Christian doctrines of Bellum Justum and Islamic Jihad will be analyzed from an African perspective, and a path to world peace will be suggested. Click here for biographical information on Mutombo Nkulu-N'Sengha

Audio-visual Presentation:
Journey to Tibet

Saturday, April 9, 2005
7:30–9:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara, California
Speaker: Tsewang Dorjee
Tsewang Dorjee, co-founder of the TibetianAid Foundation, will take us on a color-soaked, visually stirring journey across the Himalayas and into the villages of Tibet in this audio-visual presentation. Images of the life of rural people in Tibet reflect their culture and challenges. Click here for information on the TibetianAid Foundation.      

Philosophical Developments and Cultural Change in India

Saturday, April 23, 2005
2:00–5:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara, California
Speakers: Professors Gerald Larson and Nandini Iyer
An exploration and discussion of how developments in the classical Indian philosophical schools have brought about and affected cultural renewals, social changes and movements of thought, as well as given rise to radical shifts in academic interpretive theory.

Institute of Reverential Ecology 3rd Annual Retreat:
Creating the Future: Ecology, Ethics and Design
Friday, Saturday, Sunday April 29–May 1, 2005
The Institute will join with the Institute of Reverential Ecology in sponsoring a three-day exploration of the connections between Ecology, Ethics and Design. Adventurous thinkers will join with students and interested members of the community to envision modes of human, environmental and social rebirth. Speakers include Satish Kumar, Francis Moore Lappé, Vandana Shiva, Elisabet Sahtouris, Mary Evelyn Tucker, Michael Tobias, Ocean Robbins and Nandini Iyer.

Slide Show:
Journey to Sacred Sufi Sites

Saturday, May 21, 2005
7:30–9:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara, California
Speaker: Dan Kimball
Journey to several sites sacred to Sufis in Egypt, the Sinai and Senegal. Hear how Islamic mystical ideas of self-transformation are expressed in the buildings and rituals found at these sites. See how the design and use of these sacred centers also reflect local cultures. About the speaker: Dan Kimball and his family are active practitioners of Sufism and have visited a few areas of the world where practice of the mystical dimensions of Islam Is alive and well. The images they brought back reflect the rich diversity of islamic faith and practice.

Mystical Insight and Archetypal Vision

Saturday, June 4, 2005
2:00-5:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Professors Huston Smith and Nandini Iyer
Chair: Pico Iyer

These insightful scholars in religious studies will engage in a dialogue about the possibilities for human and social transformation, if guided by mystical insight and archetypal vision. Thereby, the relevance of transcendent states of consciousness to a full and well-integrated participation in social reform might be discovered.

Zone One Health Care:
Principles of a Safe, Affordable,
and Sustainable Herbal Home Health Care System

Saturday, June 18, 2005
2:00-4:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Julianne Cordero-Lamb
Based on her fieldwork and friendships among West Coast herbalists, Julianne Cordero-Lamb, a member of the Santa Barbara Chumash community and doctoral candidate in Religious Studies at UC Santa Barbara, together with her fellow herbalist, Sequoia Ladd of Tacoma, WA, have developed a home health care system based on permaculture principles. This system uses the same principles that make permaculture both sustainable and accessible to most people; people who might not otherwise be inclined to dedicate a lifetime to learning physiology- and botany-based herbalism, Ayurvedic medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine, or any of the other more esoteric and complementary healing philosophies. The foundation of their project is a grassroots effort to perceptually re-connect the issues of health care and natural resource care, interaction, and conservation.

Founding Day:
Immigrant Expressions of the American Dream
Saturday, July 2, 2005
2:00–5:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Speakers: Franchesca Cleyet, Ingrid Head and Others
Do immigrants to American experience a rebirth in self-discovery and social identity or a nightmare of false promises? How do immigrants describe their encounters with American society? Is the challenge of cultural assimilation in America a portent of an emerging world culture based on universally shared values?

Film Series:
July Film Series

Saturdays in July, 2005 at 7:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Coordinator: Robert Moore
Time will be allowed after each film for discussion.

July 9
Apap Masala

Violin virtuoso Gilles Apap travels
on a musical journey to India. Bach, Irish songs and Indian ragas make marvelous harmonies.

July 16

Rivers and Tides
A beautiful Finnish-German 2001 documentary about artist Andy Goldsworthy.    Filmmaker-cinematographer Thomas Riedelsheimer's film makes visual corollaries to    Goldsworthy's ideas concerning light, color, movement, balance and fluidity of form.

July 23

From Mao to Mozart
This film documents the legendary violinist Isaac Stern's seminal visit to China.

July 30
My Father's Garden
A documentary that re-unites man with the earth: an intimate portrait of the heart quality of organic farming.


Shakespeare on the Move!
Join us for two events in August associated with Shakespeare's Play,
Measure for Measure

Saturday, August 6, 2005
   3:00 – 6:00 pm
   Reading and Discussion of the Play
Saturday, August 20, 2005
   Afternoon and evening   
   Travel to see the play
Coordinator: Renée Tillotson
William Shakespeare's play, Measure for Measure, is being presented by Shakespeare Orange County this summer.  Renée Tillotson will lead a reading and discussion of the play on Saturday, August 6 at the Institute. Two weeks later, on August 20th, interested students will travel to the Festival Amphitheatre in Garden Grove to watch the play ­– under the stars. Measure for Measure is the bard’s dark political comedy about government hypocrisy, the tightening of rules regarding sexual conduct (even in private), and “law and disorder”.  Big Brother is at it’s best in Measure for Measure — but remember, it’s a comedy, and in the end “all’s well.” Group rate tickets:
$24 for adults, $21 for seniors and students. Transportation to Orange County will be by private car pool leaving Santa Barbara about 2 pm. (please note that these dates and times are different than what is listed in the annual program)Contact or leave a phone message at the Institute (966-3941) indicating your serious intention to go. The group rate includes great seats, which may not be available at a later date. For more information on Shakespeare Orange County:

Renaissance Perspectives on Medicine
"Physician, heal thyself"
Saturday, September 17, 2005
2:00–5:00 PM
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Speakers: Dr. Richard Hiltner and Robert Moore, CRRN
Historical and contemporary breakthroughs in medical knowledge and healing
practices will be examined in this intriguing seminar. The transmission of ancient
knowledge and the rediscovery of holistic theories will be linked to inner transmission
and the importance of the maxim, " Physician, heal thyself." Dr. Richard Hiltner, the primary speaker, has practiced medicine for over 35 years and studied several types of
alternative healing approaches. Robert Moore will offer a power point presentation on The Body Electric.


Brainstorming the 2006 Program
Saturday September 24, 2005
Time: 4:00–6:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Please join with Institute members and friends in a relaxing
atmosphere and share fresh ideas for the 2006 Institute program.
The suggested theme for the year is "Creativity and Culture."


Back to the Future of the Middle Kingdom:
The Renaissance of China

Saturday, October 8, 2005
4:00–5:30 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Speaker: Professor Scott Corbett
A first-hand report, amply illustrated, of recent changes in Chinese life presented by Dr. Corbett after his return from a 5-month stay in and around one of the most vital and vibrant parts of China–the greater Shanghai/Hangzhou nexus.

Dramatic Recitation:
Walt Whitman: Radical Patriot

Friday, October 21, 7:30 pm
Saturday, October 22, 7:30 pm
Performances at Victoria Hall Theater
33 W. Victoria Street, Santa Barbara Tickets:
General Admission $15
Students and Seniors $12
Lobero Theater Box Office (805) 963-0761,
Chaucer's Books, 3321 State Street, Santa Barbara
For more information: (805) 569-5477 2005 marks a literary milestone for the United States: the 150th anniversay (sesquicentennial) of Walt Whitman's groundbreaking, deeply influential publication of Leaves of Grass (1855). Events, exhibits, and conferences have been underway all over the country and Santa Barbara is no exception! The Santa Barbara public has the opportunity to experience this unique performing arts event, a staged recitation of Walt Whitman. Four local actors bring the great American bard to life in this original work, drawing upon a broad selection of Whitman's poetry and prose. This staged, multimedia-enhanced recitation traces the poet's early life, literary awakening, Civil War service, impressions of Lincoln, and inclusive views of faith. Choral reading, movement, song, and humor are employed, entertaining and intimating the life, times and heart of a great American.
Walt Whitman, Radical Patriot is conveived and directed by local singer, small business owner, and Institute of World Culture member Joseph Miller, who portrays Whitman. The play also features the talents of local actors Maria De La Vega Delgado and Peter John Duda (Lit Moon Theater Co.), as well as James Colbert as young Whitman.Radical Patriot (formerly Radical Patriotism) debuted in October 2004 with two free community performances at Santa Barbara Public Library's Faulkner Gallery, sponsored by the Institute of World Culture. Since then, the piece has been performed for San Marcos High School, and in March 2005 was brought to Santa Barbara City College courtesy of the Great Books Curriculum. In May 2005 Radical Patriotism was awarded a grant from the local arts and service benefactor, the Karuna Foundation to further its development and performances opportunities, including these special October performances in honor of the sesquicentennial of Leaves of Grass.

Pele’s Dance of Fire:
A Geologic Exploration of the Hawaiian Islands

Saturday, October 22, 2005
2:00–5:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Speaker: Cliff Tillotson
This seminar will delve into the causal links between volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunamis, mega-landslides and plate tectonics. Watch the power of Pele, volcano goddess, in her mighty dance of destruction and creation over one of the planet’s true “hot spots.” This vivid, multi-media enhanced presentation will provide a virtual transport to the “newest land on earth”—so new, it’s being born every day. The life cycle of the Hawaiian Islands, their formation (emergence) and dissolution (submersion) offers clues to many of the Earth’s dynamic forces and natural processes.

Restoring the Rights of Women in Afghanistan
"What an indictment of our world that love of freedom and the desire of escape from oppression and hate has to be called 'Revolutionary.'"
Saturday, November 12, 2005
4:00–6:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Presenter: Briana Lawrie, Director and Founder of RAWA
Fresh from another working visit in Afghanistan, the founder and director of RAWA, the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan, will present slides and a commentary on human rights progress and humanitarian aid programs for women. RAWA is a unique, pioneering, independent organization working for the establishment of a secular democracy which includes freedom and civil rights for women.

Turtles Can Fly
Saturday, November 12, 2005
Two Showings: 4-6:30 pm and 7-9:30 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara The third feature from internationally acclaimed Iranian filmaker Bahman Ghobadi (A Time for Drunken Horses). Written, directed and produced by Ghobadi, the film features a cast of local non-actor children. Turtles Can Fly is set in Ghobadi's native Kurdistan on the eve of the American invasion of Iraq. Thirteen-year-old Soran (Soran Ebrahim) is known as "Satellite,: for his installation of dishes and antennae for local villages looking for news of Saddam. He is the dynamic leader of the children, organizing the dangerous but necessary sweeping and clearing of the minefields. He then arranges trade-ins for the unexploded mines. The industrious Satellite falls for an unlikely orphan (Avaz Latif), a sad-faced girl traveling with her brother Henkov (Hirsh Feyssal), who appears to have the gift of clairvoyance. The siblings are care-taking a three-year-old, whose connection to the pair is discovered as harsh truths are unveiled. The devastation to this land and its inhabitants is revealed in the matter-of-fact perspective of the children and is equally displayed with every poignant detail of its unbearable nature. The exquisitely haunting mountains play backdrop to violence and tragedy, but at the same time the heart and humor of the children is an undeniable force. Turtles Can Fly won the Golden Shell at San Sebastian and the Silver Bear at Chicago and was the Iranian entry to the Academy for 2004 Foreign Film consideration.

Cultural Transformation in 19th Century Persia

Saturday, Novmber 19, 2005
2:00–5:00 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Speaker: Professor Manou Eskandari
Learn how the leadership of 19th century Persia explored Western societies and brought back to a traditional society new ideas for the transformation of language, literature and culture.

Reception and Open House

Saturday, December 17, 2005
7:00–9:30 pm
Concord House, 1407 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
Coordinator: Renée Tillotson (805-701-4246)
Members and invited guests gather for a holiday reception and refreshments ant to enjoy the wonderful storytelling of professional storyteller, Erica Lann-Clark.