Dr. Morris Schwarzblat will present “DNA: The Operating System of Life” at the next meeting of Open Circle, Sunday, February 18, 10:30 a.m. on the patio of the Lake Chapala Society.
DNA has the instructions to determine the behavior of every cell of all living organisms. Technology to edit and change these instructions has fantastic implications for our health and well-being. Synthetic biology has the potential to create new forms of life that never existed before. Dr. Schwarzblat will discuss the changes and implications that these technologies will bring in the near future.
Dr. Schwarzblat is a nuclear physicist with ample experience in academia, research and industry in Mexico and in Canada, where he lived for sixteen years. He represented Canada as a member of the Co-ordinated Research Program on Artificial Intelligence at the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, and is currently Director General of Science and Technology Development at the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology of Jalisco.
For more information on Open Circle, see opencircleajijic.org.
Jewish Film Fest
The Ajijic Jewish Film Festival celebrates its ninth year at Cine del Lago. Presented by the Lake Chapala Jewish Congregation and shown each Sunday at 1:30 p.m., the festival donates a portion of its 80-peso ticket price to a lakeside charity.
On February 18, “Past Life” will be shown. This film tracks the daring late 1970s odyssey of two sisters, an introverted classical musician and a rambunctious scandal sheet journalist – as they unravel a shocking wartime mystery that has cast a dark shadow on their entire lives.
LCS Health Day
Take advantage of the Lake Chapala Society’s Health Day offerings Monday, February 19, 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Shots for Flu (500 pesos), Pneumonia for Life (1,600 pesos) Pneumonia for five years (650 pesos), Zostavax Shingles vaccine (2,500 pesos), Hepatitis A & B series (estimated at 1,200 pesos per shot) and Typhoid (700 pesos) will be available. Shots are paid on the day administered. You must sign up for Zostavax, Typhoid, and Hepatitis series shots in LCS office. Zostavax, Typhoid, and Hepatitis series cannot be taken with any other shot, although Flu and Pneumonia shots may be taken together. Also offered are hearing services and screenings, medication and supplement consultations, and a presentation by Cynthia Guzman of San Francisco Funeral Home on “How to Die in Mexico,” at 12:30 p.m. in the LCS Sala. All services are open to the public.
LCS TED talks
Canadian psychology professor Brian Little will speak on “Who Are You, Really? The Puzzle of Personality,” Tuesday, February 20, noon to 1:15 p.m. at the LCS Sala. The talk is hosted by Gary Thompson. Little has taught at McGill, Oxford, Harvard, and Cambridge universities. His book, “Me Myself, and Us,” explores how our personality traits work to shape our lives. A self-proclaimed introvert, he compares introverts to extroverts and shows that we can perform against our personal traits to accomplish our goals in this very humorous presentation.
He has been described as a cross between Robin Williams and Einstein. He was elected Favorite Professor by three consecutive Harvard graduating classes. This event is for LCS members only.
Neill James Lecture
Patrick Neary presents “The Paradox of Intelligence” at the next Neill James lecture, Tuesday, February 20, 2-3:30 p.m. in the Sala of the Lake Chapala Society.
The world of intelligence has been rightly called a “house of mirrors” where truth is hidden in lies, and friends, enemies, and “frenemies” coexist. In this discussion, we’ll examine these paradoxes by considering several recent historical cases where the truth was out there, but often not believed, while rumor and innuendo ruled the day. Neary has advanced degrees in National Security and Strategic Intelligence and spent almost 40 years in the intelligence field, working at the Pentagon, Langley, and Liberty Crossing. This event is for LCS members only.
The Lakeside Freethinkers will discuss the topic of evaluating evidence, with the events of September 11, 2001 serving as the focal point at their next meeting, Wednesday, February 21, 4-6 p.m. at La Nueva Posada.
The group defines a “freethinker” as a person who is an atheist, agnostic, secular humanist, or skeptic. Freethinkers reject supernatural and other unsupported claims, and rely instead on reason applied to evidence to guide their lives.
Mexican migrant stories
Judy King will mentor six weekly sessions of a new Personal Enrichment Program (PEP) class at the Lake Chapala Society (LCS) beginning Wednesday, February 21, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. “Coming Home: Real Stories of Mexican Migrants” hears migrant voices relate the cross-border experience in novels, non-fictional literature, interviews and movies.
The class will listen for the echoes of immigration in a variety of interactive ways. Several former migrants will visit class sessions to share their own experiences. Participants will view the satirical and often humorous, award-winning movie, “A Day Without a Mexican,” and King will add an overview of the migration dialogue from the Braceros of the World War I to today’s Dreamers. Class members will share the stories and situation from the three books they selected to read from the book list available after registration.
Hearing the stories of the migrant voices and the echoes of the border history gives expats an immigration experience far different from their own and insight into the lives and experiences of many of their neighbors – the artists, teachers, wait staff, business owners, doctors and construction workers of this community.
Sign-up for the class is currently underway from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday to Saturday at the LCS office.
LCS bus trip
The Lake Chapala Society will go to the ceramics and crafts centers of Tlaquepaque and Tonala, Wednesday, February 21. Tickets, 350 pesos for members and 450 pesos for non-members, are on sale at the LCS service. The bus departs 9 a.m. from the sculpture in La Floresta.
The Shriners are preparing for their 12th annual Rib Fest event Wednesday, March 7, 1 p.m., at Cumbres Events Garden on the top of Chula Vista Norte, with fantatic views of the lake. The Ajijic Jam Band will entertain while you enjoy Adelita’s famous ribs and chicken with full table service. Added attractions include door prizes, a 50/50 cash raffle and attractive items up for bid in the silent auction.
Proceeds from the Ribfest will be used to provide physical examinations to disabled Lakeside children under age 18 who may qualify for specialized care locally, or transportation to the Mexico City Shrine Hospital for more advanced treatment.
Ample parking will be available, along with shuttle bus transportation from Black Coffee, located across the road from Wal-Mart, starting at 12:45 p.m. Get tickets, 500 pesos, now from any Shriner, Diane Pearl, O&A Investments or call David, 331-017-1724 or Perry, 763-5126.
The Heart of Awareness Insight Meditation Community offers multiple opportunities each week for silent mediation. All sessions are open to the public and chairs and cushions are provided.
One-hour meditation periods are offered Sunday and Monday at 9 a.m. Wednesday, February 21, the 45-minute meditation period beginning at 4 p.m. will be followed by a video presentation from a series titled “Moving beyond the Mirage: Practicing with Buddhism’s Five Aggregates”. In this talk, Pascal Auclair will discuss the aggregate “perception” and how, when we don’t question our perceptions, we are led to think and act unskillfully.
February 19, the documentary “My Buddha is Punk” will be shown. Twenty-five-year-old Burmese punk musician Kyaw Kyaw is on a mission. He and his band, The Rebel Riot, travel Myanmar playing music and organizing demonstrations to raise awareness about the persecution of the country’s ethnic minorities. The band’s unique blend of ideals — one part Buddhist compassion, two parts punk rock rebellion — fuels their quest for equality and freedom for all in contemporary Myanmar. Admission is free and donations are welcome.
The meditation center is located at Guadalupe Victoria 101 in Ajijic. For more information, see heartofawareness.org.