Posts tagged ‘Winter solstice’

January 16, 2014

Eastern Orthodox New Year

by eirenehogan

14th January, 2014, is new year according to the Eastern Orthodox church, or some of them, which has kept the Julian calendar – or a version of it –  instead of taking on the Gregorian calendar, which was introduced in 1582.

 

The Julian calendar had been introduced by Julius Caesar and added the leap year to make up 0.25 of a day each year was out.  But the year was actually out by 0.2425 of a day, ie, slightly LESS than a quarter of a day.  By the 1500s this meant the calendar was out by 10 days, and more importantly, meant Easter, which was meant to be celebrated at the time of the Spring equinox, was out, and so the reforms were brought in.

 

But while Catholic countries took it up quickly (as Gregory was the Pope) Protestant and Orthodox countries were suspicious of it.  It wasn’t taken up in England until 1752.

 

The Orthodox churches didn’t take it up within their church, although the countries did slowly adopt it as their civil calendar.  Russia took it up finally in 1918 (ie, after the revolution) and Greece did not take it up until 1923.  That’d be right, the Greeks never did like the Romans.

 

While most countries in the world have taken it up, some still have not, including – according to Wikipedia – Saudi ArabiaEthiopiaNepalIran and Afghanistan

December 20, 2013

Why is Christmas on the 25th December?

by eirenehogan

1 – this is date of mid-winter by the Julian calendar, which was the calendar of the Roman Empire. 

 

2 – The date was in practise as the time of Christ’s birth by the 4th century AD.  There is a theory that an old Jewish tradition of the time believed that people died on the same date they were conceived.  [Huh! If such a belief did not belong to any of the Judeo-Christian-Islam tradition, it would be considered ‘superstition’].  Given that this Jesus character was supposedly killed in a crucifixion during the Jewish Passover, in 33 AD, which was in Spring, then the early Church Elders worked out that, if he had been conceived at that time, he would have been born in December.

 

It is convenient that Jesus died in Spring, a common time for the death of dying gods in ancient Mediterranean religions.  And it is equally convenient that his supposed birth occurred in mid-winter, another time of religious celebrations in ancient Mediterranean religions.

 

Jesus is just another in the long line of dying gods in the Mediterranean, popular with the Greeks.  They tended to be accompanied with ‘Mysteries’ which were secret ceremonies people were inducted into, which generally gave them a promise of eternal life.  Sound familiar?  Christianity was just another Mystery Cult.

 

December 20, 2013

The true meaning of 25th December

by eirenehogan

In late Roman times the 25th December was the festival of Dies Natalis Solis Invicti – the day of the symbolic rebirth of the Unconquerable Sun. He was worshipped in Roman times up to at least 387AD, and in parts up to at least the 5th century AD.

 

The day of his festival (25th December) is just after the winter solstice, the longest night of the year (which is the 22nd December).  His rebirth meant winter would end and the warmth of the sun would bring back life in the world.  If the sun never returned the world would die.

 

Such a rebirth can also be symbolic of the renewal of society and of the individual, who will resolve to live a better and more ethical life in the new year.

 

The emperor Constantine was a worshipper of Sol Invictus before he took up Christianity.

 

In Australia, of course, his day comes just after the Summer solstice – the longest day.  It seems fitting that Sol Invictus could be recognised here, when he is at his height of power in mid-summer.

 

Sol Invictus is the true meaning for the season.

 

Sol Invictus, is the unconquerable son sun.

His symbolic rebirth, the– was celebrated on 25th December.

 

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