Most Common Myths About Space

By Cas Melk – The Netherlands

I bet many of you at one point dreamt about going to outer space, witness meteors and asteroids passing by and find out what happens to a human inside a black hole, but in essence, most of our knowledge about the Universe is made up of random bits from Hollywood movies and science fiction books, which are often quite far from reality. I will try to dispel a few of these myths for you. So, these are the 3 most common myths about space.

The first myth we are going talk about is Mercury. Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun and that is why many people think it is also the hottest planet in our solar system. This is obviously a myth; the distance from the sun doesn’t affect the average temperature on a planet. Mercury is indeed the closest planet to the Sun but it doesn’t mean it is the hottest one, during the day the temperature of the surface of mercury can reach 420 degrees centigrade, but, due to rotation differences, a day on Mercury lasts about 58 earth days. Since its atmosphere is very rarefied it doesn’t hold heat well and the temperature on the unlit side of the planet plummets to -173 centigrade. Our North Pole compared with this is a beach resort. The hottest planet of the solar system is actually Venus because of its dense atmosphere which consists of carbon dioxide and nitrogen. The average temperature on Venus doesn’t go much below 462 degrees centigrade.

Another myth is that the moon has a dark side. When we talk about the dark side of the moon we normally mean the side that’s unlit by the sun, but it would be way more precise to talk about that side that isn’t seen by humans. The moon and the earth move simultaneously which means that we can only see one side of our moon from the surface of our planet. The other so-called dark side of the Moon can’t be seen without leaving the Earth’s orbit but since the moon as well as the Earth spins around each other the sunlight reaches all the parts of the moon. So there isn’t actually any really dark side of the moon.

Many people think the sun is yellow but this is also a myth. Even though we see the Sun as a yellow orange or red circle, depending on the time of the day and its position in the sky, the sun is actually white. The color of any light depends on the temperature, and the temperature on the surface of the sun is 4.500 degrees centigrade, which glows white at this temperature. But why do we see the sun as yellow and not white? The thing is that the longer light waves from the yellow red part of the spectrum passes threw the atmosphere of the earth almost without loss of energy and the shorter greens of violet waves diffract a lot, so if you ever get the chance to look at the Sun from outer space you will see with your own eyes that the sun is white and not yellow.

So these myths are the most common ones in our solar system and definitely worth mentioning. It is always very interesting to research these myths/mysteries; there are still millions of things we don’t know about space or we think we know about space but are very different in reality. Space is the most overwhelming thing that exists and it is definitely worth to learn more about it.

Yoga in Motion: Is the purpose being lost along the way?


When thinking about yoga it is easy to picture a beautiful, young woman doing bends and stretches on the beach. This modern-day image of yoga is the result of years of commercialization and of yoga becoming part of the exercise boom that has taken the world lately. The question is, how has this boom influenced yoga, and can you still benefit from this practice?

The origins of yoga
Yoga as a meditative practice can be dated as far back as 5, 000 years ago, but it wasn’t until more recently that the yoga we know today began to emerge. About 100 years ago, yoga was introduced to the western world, as a science of self-study. The ultimate goal of yoga on a personal level was to unite the body, mind and spirit to obtain inner peace, harmony and clarity of mind, and to free oneself from limitations of the body, mind and senses. This inner change in human consciousness was also said to influence society at large. Yoga was said to create an attitude of non-violence, consideration, moderation and a more evolved civilization that could transform society in a positive way.


6 branches of yoga
To help reach this ideal state of supreme consciousness there were six paths. These paths could be used separately or combined to reach the highest level of meditation. These six paths were also referred to as the branches of yoga;yoga3

  • Hatha: focuses on body and breathing, raises awareness of internal state and transforms the body into a strong resource.
  • Karma: the yoga of action – teaches the practitioner to do one’s own duty selflessly and skillfully without being a burden.
  • Jnana: the path of knowledge and wisdom – intense mental discipline.
  • Bhakti: the yoga of devotion – teaches that human love and devotion is a resource to obtain an ultimate reality.
  • Kundalini: focuses on the highly technical science of yoga.
  • Mantra: meditation – the object of concentration.

These paths or branches were said to lead way to the Raja stage of yoga, the royal path, which was the way to full realization of the self. Raja yoga contains eight stages of self-transformation, the first four stages being physical and the later four being internal.

The modern day yoga
Critics would suggest that yoga today has grown to be a part of the multi-billion dollar health industry, yet another form of exercise practiced by busy career-focused people, and hence has suffered from spiritual poverty and been watered down to something almost unrecognizable. It is true that many yoga studios and gyms today focus mostly on the Hatha part of yoga. Focusing primarily on the body and breathing, modern day yoga has become a popular form of exercise, and studies show that the health benefits of this practice are consistent. The benefits are both widespread and varied.

Atlanta Ballet students in various classes

Health benefits from practicing Hatha yoga
Portrayed below are some of the health benefits that can be achieved by practicing yoga on a regular basis, as a part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle.yoga2

  • Physical improvements (flexibility, balance, muscle strength): perfects posture and leads to less pain and injuries.
  • Increases blood flow and heart rate: reduces risk of heart disease.
  • Drains lymph nodes: boosts immunity, destroys cancerous cells and disposes toxic waste.
  • Regulates adrenal glands: lowers cortisol levels, which increases weight loss.
  • Mental improvements: improved focus, happiness, relaxation, peace of mind, heightens self-esteem.
  • Inspires a healthy lifestyle: raises consciousness in diet, exercise and relationships.

The transformation of yoga practice
So is this transformation of yoga negative? Are we losing the original concept of yoga?
As mentioned earlier the way to Raja and supreme consciousness is different for every practitioner. Each individual must find their own way. Therefore the Hatha path might be right for some, but not for others. Considering this, the transformation of yoga has nothing to worry about, although, today’s yoga practitioners may lack an understanding of the purpose of yoga, other than the physical health benefits, which might lead to a future loss of the purpose of yoga.
Helping us towards a conclusion is yoga instructor Don Steensma who once said;

“Yoga is a living, breathing art form that is constantly changing through each practitioner’s experience.”

Yoga is different for each individual, and the practice does not look the same way as it did 5, 000 years ago. Yoga is constantly in motion, and the positive impacts on the human being are clear. The way to obtaining supreme consciousness may be changing, but it is hopefully still as potent as ever.


By Carolina Magnusson, Sweden




5 BASIC QUESTIONS:malaika-foto-1

  • Where are you from?

I’m from Switzerland, but I have double nationality, because my father is from Brazil.

  • Do you have siblings?

Yes, I have five siblings. Four brothers and one sister, and I’m the oldest.

  • How old are you?

I’m twenty.

  • Where do you live? 

Now I’m living in Santa Barbara. But I
live in Geneva (Switzerland)foto-mailaka-3

  • What’s your favorite food?

I don’t have one favorite food, because I love almost all. But now I’d like to eat a big cheeseburger and an Oreo milkshake.


  • Where do you want to live if you could choose?

If I could choose I’d like to live in New Zeland

  • Have you ever worked? If yes, which kind of work?

Yes, I used to work in a Kindergarten as an educator.

  • Do you like the life in USA?malaika-foto-2

Yes, I love it.

  • What are you going to do after this experience?

I don’t know, I’m here to think about it and clear my ideas.

  • Do you play some sports? If yes, which ones?

Yes I play boxing right now in Santa Barbara. In my past I used to be a very sport girl.


Interview with Giulia Raineri



5 Basic questions:

-Do you have siblings?foto-giulia-2

Yes I have one older brother.

-Where are you from?

I come from Italy.

-What’s your favorite dish?

It’s the real Italian pizza.

-Do you have pet?

Yes, I have thirteen cats and one dog.

-What’s your favorite color?

My favorite color it’s green but black as well.


5 open-foto-giulia-1ended questions:

-If you had 24h to live, what would you do?

I would come back to my country to spend my last hours with my boyfriend, my family and my friends, and cry.

-If you could choose the year you were born, what year would it be ?

It would be the 1920’s because of the Roaring Twenties.

-If you win a billion of dollars what would you do with it ?

 I would travel and give money  for poor people.

-Do you practice any sport ?

Yes, karate kyokushinkay since one year.

If you could kill someone in the past who would it be (someone famous) ?

I don’t like to kill so I would put Hitler in jail.

Interview about Annabelle Hoogakker

This is Annabelle.

Where do you live ? In Netherlands

When is your birthday ? The 9th of April 1999

Do you have brothers or sisters ? She doesn’t have brothers or sisters

What are your hobbies ? To play field hockey, shopping, partying

How much time will you stay here ? 9 months

What do you prefer in Santa Barbara ? The pier and the Beach

Have you ever seen the Grand Canyon ? Yes, of course

Why did you come here ? I wanted a gap year because I was not ready for university and I want to have my Cambridge certificate.

Which level would you like to be at the end of your gap year ? C2.1



by Ana Sattler, Germany

nancyNancy Peridier is a 17 year old girl from Montpellier, France.She has a half-brother who is 33 years old. Besides her family owns a dog and a cat. In her free time Nancy likes to read, spend time with her friends and to do some shopping in the city. In addition she loves to travel: she has already been to England, Germany, Whales, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Turkey and the USA.

Nancy arrived in Santa Barbara in September and will stay here until March. After her stay in the United States she will change her destination to Berlin, Germany where she is going to study until May. Besides French she knows how to speak English and German but wants to improve her language skills during her EF Gap Year.

Since she arrived in SB she already traveled to LA and visited the amusement park “Six Flags” which she liked a lot.

After returning back home Nancy is going to spend the summer with all her friends, before she will start University next fall. Nancy would like to study languages since she wants to work abroad in her future.

Interview with Eri Yamashita

Hugo Bicho, Switzerland

5 questions – Basic:

What’s your name?


Where are you from?

Japan (Crazy)

How old are you?


What’s your favorite color?

Red, Gold

What’s your favorite plate?



5 questions – Unusual:

What’s your favorite car?


What was your best punishment?

She apologized door of her father’s company because she broke this door…

What inspires you?


Who would win a fight between Spider man and Batman?


What were you like in high school?

Crazy but very smart and kind, lazy







Hugo Bicho

Interview by Eri Yamashita, JAPAN

normal question  

1 Where are you from?
Switzerland French
2 What’s your favorite food?
fried rice
3 Why are you studying English?
movie, his future job
4 What’s your favorite sport?
5 How many siblings do you have?
unusual question
1 What do you prefer to do in your free time?
Take some pictures and play games, learn more about planes, go out with friends, drink beers, watch movie, series …
2 What do you think about Japanese culture?
You are crazy people (very good  and funny)
3 How much time do you need to sleep?
4 What do you want to do in Santa Barbara?
Helicopter trip
5 What should I ask you??
About my passion
(Aviation, types of planes…)

Media and journalism: Interview of Camilla

  1. where do you come from ?   She lives in Greenland Greenland
  2. Do you have brother and sister ? She has one little sister 16 years ,one big brother 29 years
  3. When is your birthday ? She was born the  8 January
  4. Do you play any sport ? Handball , 10 years
  5. How long do you stay here ? 9 months
  6. What do you prefer in Santa Barbara ? the weather, the beach, people are open
  7. Which countries did you visit before ? Portugual , Danmark and Germany
  8. If you can have a superpower what would it be ? the power to flying
  9. What do you want to do after EF ? study sociology in university
  10.  What’s your favorite food ? it’s a Greenlandic food ” Tuttu Panertoq” . This is Dried meat.




Personal Interview with Elsa Abergel


Personal Interview with Elsa Abergel

By Jessica Fruehbrodt, Germany

Basic Questions

  1. Where are you from and how does your hometown/-city look like?

I’m from Belgium in Antwerp. It is a pretty small city but really nice.

  1. When you compare it with Santa Barbara, CA do you think your hometown is similar to this city? Where are the differences?

My home city is really different compared to Santa Barbara. The city where I come from is a lot bigger than SB. Our downtown is much bigger than State Street and Paseo Nuevo.

  1. Do you have siblings? Do you already miss your family?

Yes I have one brother and one sister. I’m the middle one. Yes I miss them but I’m already excited to see them soon because I’m going back to Belgium to spend the holidays with them.

  1. Have you ever been to the USA before? And where have you been exactly when you answer that with ‘yes’?

Yeah I’ve been here for a few times. I’ve visited Washington, Miami, Philadelphia, and right now I’m enjoying my life here in California.

  1. Are there any other cities or state that you want to visit while you’re here in Santa Barbara?

I definitely want to see Las Vegas. That will be my last trip here in California because I’ve already been to San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco.  

Unusual, open-ended Questions

  1. What would be your first reaction if a shark attacks you while you’re surfing?

I would get a heart attack because I’m really afraid of sharks. That’s also the reason why I don’t go into the water at all.

  1. You’re going to transfer to Boston soon. Why did you choose this city? Aren’t you afraid of the cold?

I choose this city because it is the biggest EF school in the United States of America and also because my best friend goes to university there. I’m not afraid of the cold because I’m used to it because it is also really cold in my home city.

  1. What was your most awkward situation ever?

When I was in the plane I was talking about a girl sitting next to me and I said to my friend that I’m sitting next to the ugliest person ever. I didn’t realize that she also spoke French and understood me.

  1. When you could decide where would you like to spend the rest of your life where would that be?

I would move to London, England.

  1. When you would be stranded on a lonely island. With whom would you want to be with?

I would want to be there with my best friend.