November 2016

NATIVE PERSPECTIVES / Intersections of Water, Science and Indigenous Knowledge

Seth Roffman


Last month, Pueblo and tribal leaders, representatives from across Indian Country and climate researchers met at Jemez Pueblo in New Mexico for two days to discuss the intersections of water, science and indigenous knowledge.


Participants included Flower Hill Institute, Water is Life: A Tribal Partnership, West Water, South Central Climate Science Center, Louisiana State University, the University of Arizona and New Mexico State University. Attending were tribal representatives from the pueblos of Acoma, Isleta, Jemez, Laguna, Sandia, San Felipe, Santo Domingo and Zia, as well as from the Mescalero Apache Nation, Jicarilla Apache Nation, Hopi Nation, Navajo Nation, Sac More >

Stirring Indigenous Mind Back Into the Commons of Human Consciousness


Jack Loeffler


Just as the winds of autumn stir the air that surrounds us, that we breathe in and out, that we share with our fellow lifeforms, so does our collective consciousness swirl with waves of input from without. Modern media constantly reshapes our perspective from moment to moment, rarely allowing time for conscious reflection, or even stillness of mind, unless we take time out to refocus our attention. Otherwise our minds are in constant motion, endlessly fed input largely designed to persuade us to purchase what we have been convinced we need, or to vote for a political animal carefully More >

Ritual, Ceremony and Thanksgiving

The Art of Hospitality


Alejandro López


As most know, early in the 17th century, the Wampanoag native people of the eastern seaboard (now Massachusetts) generously fed and welcomed the Puritans, an oppressed religious minority group that fled England’s climate of religious hostility and took refuge in these distant shores. Since then, Thanksgiving has become a celebration that has generally succeeded in cutting through most religious, cultural and class divides in this country, thanks, in part, to President Abraham Lincoln’s declaration of it as a national holiday in 1863, a time when the country was being torn apart in a civil war. 


Thanksgiving More >

In Gratitude for Vegetables


Japa K. Khalsa


At Thanksgiving, the turkey is the centerpiece of the meal, but what brings color and life are the bounty of freshly prepared vegetables. The New Mexico fall harvest gave us many squash, pumpkins and our famous chile for the Thanksgiving meal. How can we bring lots of veggies to the table that are colorful, full of flavor and add to the traditional side dishes of mashed potatoes and peas?


Pumpkin Chile Soup

Pumpkin soup is a beautiful and healthful accompaniment to your Thanksgiving supper. Pumpkins are considered one of the best ways to build the health of the adrenals and More >

Gathering Liquid Starlight from Many Flowers


Melanie Margarita Kirby


In the beginning there was the Zia sun, its light radiating warm, energizing particles upon our enchanted lands. Over millennia, this starlight caused snow to melt and plants to grow and blossom. Floral blooms transferred the radiant energy through perfumed nectars and pollen, instigating the birth of seedseach with its own unique, resilient story. These seed stories form an illuminating collective that also nurtures people, societies, cultures, traditions and cuisines.


Every year, these stories wait silently and discreetly to be told. For this to happen, many six-legged ballerinas must dance among flowers, serving as midwives for the flowering-to-fruit cycle. The More >

Picking Piñón: A Vignette from Elvis Romero and the Cosmic White Corvette


Andrew Lovato


Treat beyond compare

Tiny nuts from branches fall

Resting in my hair



Autumn was traditionally a busy time in Santa Fe when the piñón nuts were dropping from their cones and ready for picking. Elvis’ mom and dad supplemented their modest income by selling the tasty nuts during the holidays. Elvis and his little brother Angelo accompanied them on weekends into the piñón-dotted hills around Santa Fe. The boys didn’t see these excursions as work but rather as great fun.


The piñón tree has been an important source of food and fuel for centuries in New Mexico. The Pueblo Indians and Spanish natives More >

Curanderismo and Curanderas of Northern New Mexico

A Long and Noble Tradition


Hilario Romero


In the United States of North America historians trace conventional surgical medicine to the Civil War. However, for over four centuries in what we call New Mexico, curanderismo was and still is the native way for curing mental and physical diseases among the traditional mixed-race Spanish and native Indian cultures. Curanderismo is a term from the 19th century that describes ancient methods of traditional healing among the first group of primarily mestizo-indio colonists who entered New Mexico in 1598. In northern New Mexico, it has been a tradition passed on from generation to generation, mostly among traditional More >

Healing Our World With Curanderismo


Athena Wolf


Working through illness without drugs, hormones, or chemicals can help us heal our world and ourselves, according to the ancient art of curanderismo. In this way we treat all of our relations with respect. Curanderismo’s holistic methods have been a tradition in the Americas for centuries. It is also known as Mexican traditional medicine, or “medicina del campo.”

The Mexican leader Montezuma grew thousands of varieties of plants in order to research their medicinal properties. In the 16th century, Spanish conquistadors destroyed Montezuma’s garden and all of the research, as they considered it blasphemous. Although this written information was destroyed, More >

Ratón Is Envisioning a Sustainable Future


John Davidson


Like so many rural communities in New Mexico and across America, Ratón is at a crossroads.


Founded in the 19th century as an outlying colony of westward expansion, Ratón provided coal and water for the new railroad. While it exported cattle and coal, its food was largely produced locally—through small farms, gardens, and the raising of sheep, goats and cattle.


When houses converted to central heating, local coal was the fuel. As demand for electricity came, it was provided by burning local coal. Ratón developed its own electric distribution grid—still in existence and in good shape.


Eventually, the exports became coal, More >

Early College Opportunities School

A Student’s Perspective


Article by Irie Charity

Photos by Marisol Sandoval



Early College Opportunities (E.C.O.), the new high school in Santa Fe, is located where the old Vo-Tech school used to be. E.C.O. offers unique opportunities for students to learn through hands-on, real-world projects. The school is teaching us to open our minds and hearts. After only 10 weeks, we are developing a new sense of how education can work to make our lives and communities better.


When asked what makes E.C.O different, one student replied, “I come to E.C.O because I want to own my auto shop one day. Through the auto More >

Renewable Energy Outpaces Nuclear, in New Mexico and the Nation


Renewable energy, including solar, is outpacing nuclear energy in New Mexico and nationally, according to two new government reports. The Energy Information Administration’s Monthly Energy Review revealed that in the first half of 2016, domestic renewable energy production was 25 percent greater than nuclear power production. A separate report, from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, said that renewable energy generating capacity is now double that of nuclear.


Sanders Moore, state director at Environment New Mexico, said the state is ranked 13th in the country for solar generating capacity—a ranking she finds disappointing. “Other states are taking advantage of solar energy More >

Energy Newsbites – November 2016


The Largest Solar Energy Project in New Mexico

 A new $260-million solar project on 1,400 acres near Roswell is the largest in the state. On Oct. 6, local and state leaders celebrated the Roswell and Chaves County Solar Energy centers, which 300 workers spent a year building. About 600,000 solar panels with a combined generating capacity of 140 megawatts (MW), enough to power more than 40,000 homes, will track the sun. According to a news release, 300 jobs were created during the construction phase. Five full-time employees will oversee the energy centers.


NextEra Energy Resources developed and built the project and will More >

Standing Rock Strong


By Chili Yazzie – SW Diné


we are of the Earth

and the Holy Breath


we honor the Earth

we protect the water

we defend our people

monster black snake intrudes

polluting medicines of the Earth

it cares not, if it destroys sacred sites

this snake will poison all our good waters


big bad corporation is set on killing the Earth

Standing Rock is the epicenter of our resistance

Standing Rock is a calling together of good people

corporation been having its greedy way for too long

so it is, that we stand here to make this the ultimate stand


we face attack dogs, pepper spray, AR-15s and legal games

in response, our drums More >

Op-Ed: Standing Rock Pipeline


In struggles throughout history there is a positive and negative side, justice versus injustice, good against evil. The standoff at Standing Rock is such a story. The Energy Transfer Partners, with its Dakota Access Pipeline and supporters on one side, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and supporters on the other.


Standing Rock and multitudes of people oppose inflicting more damage to the earth. The pipeline will destroy waters of life and further contaminate the environment. Our grandchildren will inherit the permanent consequences of climate change.


In this confrontation between the Destroyers and the Protectors, the Destroyers have the power of More >

Architects Slam Cuts to State’s Green Building Incentives

AIA-NM says cuts would hit tribal communities and low-income residents hardest 


AIA New Mexico, the state component of the American Institute of Architects, representing almost 400 licensed architects, is urging state officials to reconsider proposed cuts to New Mexico’s Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program—cuts they say endanger ongoing projects in tribal and low-income communities.


In a letter to the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority, AIA-NM President Andre Larroque stated that the proposed changes to the LIHTC Program Qualified Allocation Plan totally eliminate longstanding, established criteria for encouraging sustainable design, including the use of healthy building materials and water-conservation techniques. “These More >

Newsbites – November 2016


Acoma Pueblo Partners with Bright Green Group of Companies

A new partnership between Acoma Pueblo and Bright Green Group of Companies is creating “the world’s most advanced, state-of-the-art greenhouse facility and research center for medicinal plants,” according to a promotional video ( The fully automated greenhouse, constructed on approximately 150 acres of Acoma Pueblo Reservation, will have the capacity to grow 40 million plants per year.


The MJ Brown Research Center and greenhouse facility will cost more than $160 million and cover 5.8 million square feet, the equivalent of 4,000 average size homes. Power, water and gas facilities will be provided, More >

What’s Going On? – Albuquerque – November 2016



Nov. 5, 9 am–12 pm

Backyard Farming Series

Gutiérrez-Hubbell House, 6029 Isleta SW

Seed Saving and Seed Exchange workshop includes discussion on heirloom, hybrid and genetically modified seeds. 505.314.0420,


Nov. 5, 9 am–4 pm

Annual Pueblo Fiber Arts Show & Sale

IPCC, 2401 12th St. NW

Also, 12–2 pm: Pueblo Food Experience Cookbook discussion/book signing.


Nov. 5, 7:30 pm

Interactive Art Projects on the Land

Outpost Performance Space, 210 Yale SE

Climate Change Speaker Series. Public Forum: Lisa Nevada, Chip Thomas, Andrea Polli & collaboration. Free.


Nov. 6

Día de los Muertos Marigold Parade

Isleta Blvd., So. Valley

Celebrates Day of the Dead. Live music, art show, craft demos and traditional Mexican More >

What’s Going On? – Santa Fe – November 2016


Nov. 3, 6–8:30 pm

Launch Party

BODY of SF, 333 W. Cordova Rd.

Patrick’s Probiotic Soda Waters.


Nov. 4–5

Quantum Agriculture Workshop

Pueblo of Tesuque Intergenerational Center

Presented by Hugh Lovel. Learn how agriculture works in harmony with nature and how to improve yields, reduce cultivation, eliminate weeds, pests and diseases while building humus. (See ad, page 17) Info: 518.332.3156, 505.699.6408 or Sliding-scale fee. Registration:


Nov. 5, 10 am–2 pm

BAG Flea Market

Palace of the Governors, 110 Washington Ave.

SF Book Arts Group/Palace Press annual multi-vendor arts market. Supplies for mixed-media, assemblage and collage, handmade books and journals, specialty papers, antique books and prints, ephemera, gifts. 505.660.9942, More >

What’s Going On? – Taos – November 2016



Nov. 19

Congreso de las Acequias

Sagebrush Inn

Annual meeting of the NM Acequia Association, a statewide nonprofit organization whose mission is to protect water and acequias, grow healthy food and honor cultural heritage. 505.995.9644,


Third Weds. Monthly

Taos Entrepreneurial Network

Taos County Courthouse Mural Room, Taos Plaza

Networking, presentations and discussion. Free.



Holy Cross Hospital Health Support

HCH Community Wellness Center (lower entrance), 1397 Weimer Rd.




What’s Going On? – Here & There – November 2016



Nov. 5, 5:30 pm

Northern Youth Project Harvest Dinner

Joe Ferran Gym, Pueblo de Abiquiú Plaza, Abiquiú, NM

Community dinner made with ingredients from local farms. Music. Silent auction of local artists’ work. $15/$5 kids. 213.718.2806,,


Nov. 5–6

Dixon Studio Tour

Dixon, NM

Painters, potters, photographers, jewelers and more. 29 studios. 505.579.9199,


Nov. 5, 9 am–5 pm

Annual Solar Celebration

SolLuna Solar, 56 County Rd. 65, Dixon, NM

Local food, raffle, live music. 505.455.8875,


Nov. 7, 1:25–3:40 pm

Soils and Landscapes of the Southwestern US

Phoenix, AZ

Symposium on soil-plant relations. Learn to adapt land management strategies for maintaining ecosystem health and conserving plant diversity. Pre-registration by 10/26 required. Sponsored More >