...has been celebrated since pre-historic times, when our ancestors observed with dismay that the Sun seemed to be going away, so they created rites to make it return.
Among many Websites
explains a few of the ones we know --like Christmas,* Chanukah, Saturnalia, etc.
and some that we may not know about.
* birth of Christ would have been in the Spring at lambing time: "...there were shepherds abiding in the fields...keeping watch over their flocks by night..."
Christianity methodically took over and rebranded "pagan" festivals and their sacred sites.
Whatever you celebrate, (if you do), may it be meaningful.
Best wishes for a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.
And may there be peace on Earth.
> were shepherds abiding in the fields...keeping watch over
> their flocks by night..."
Our (Christian) choice of the date for Christmas comes from
scripture: the Gospel of Saint John 3:30: "He [Jesus] must
increase, but I must decrease [Saint John the Baptist]."
As the length of the days after the Winter solstice increase,
the Winter solstice was chosen at Jesus' birthday ("He must
increase") and as length of the days after the Summer solstice
decrease, the Summer solstice was chosen as Saint John the
Baptist's birthday ("I must decrease").
It was all about symbolism (virtually no one could read at
the beginning of our church).
That was precisely our intention. Good family fun
replacing drunken debauchery. And it was far more
"replacing" than "rebranding".
Now we need to get the materialism thing under control.
(Kind of got out of our hands.) I have heard of a
family that all volunteers at a soup kitchen on Christmas
Eve -- the true spirit of giving. It is a good start.
You as well Higgs!
p.s. I would love it if you told us the story behind Chanukah.
I know, we/I could look it up on the web ourselves, but those
are not our friends.
On Thursday, December 18, 2014 11:49:04 AM UTC-8, Todd wrote:
Interesting ambiguous phrase "not our friends". Deeper meaning?
There are literally hundreds of Web sites under "story of Chanukah" and "Chanukah" and "Jewish festivals' etc. explaining Chanukah much more eloquently than could your correspondent.
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