When our commune was first established the founding elders agreed that there would be no recognition or celebration of holidays based in Pagan tradition. That sadly included Christmas.
My father referred to Christmas as a “filthy Pagan ritual” and refused to expose his children to its customs. As a child I was far too young to understand the true meaning of either the holiday or my father’s opinion of its formation. Growing up I knew the birth of Jesus was in April and we celebrated his birth each year with great enthusiasm. While conveniently close to Easter, another Pagan tradition, the birth of Christ had it’s own celebration every year on April 6th. As I got older I decided my father was crazy, but I digress.
Aside from a small gift provided by my grandparents, Christmas went by each year with no fan fare or acknowledgement. As a teenager I rebelled against my parents wishes and brought a Christmas tree into my bedroom. It’s amazing what a hatchet, a few strings of popped corn and silver fake icicles can do to lift the holiday spirit. It wasn’t much but it was mine.
As I became an adult and enjoyed the fruits of the real world I fell in love with Christmas. I fell in love with the lights, the music, the food and the energy. But I still had no connection with it in regards to Jesus. It was a Pagan celebration of joy and giving and I was perfectly accepting of that. I was anti-religion and wanted nothing to do with any religious aspect of the holidays. Then I matured and discovered the truth of Spirituality. I rediscovered Christ and his teachings of love and light. I am not a Christian and have no attachments to the birth of Christ. I have finally come to understand the true meaning of Christmas and the joyous celebration this season represents.
It turns out that my crazy father as right about the Pagan foundation of Christmas, although I completely disagree about it being based in evil practices. I for one celebrate the Divine Feminine and everything She represents. More on that in another blog. Most Religious scholars agree that Jesus was most likely not born in December, so why did the Catholic Church choose December 25th? It is really quite simple and you can find the juicy details in links provided below. Warning, these links may cause you to rethink a few things you think you know. These are only for the open-minded…
My favorite part of the Winter holiday festivities is the celebration of light. It is no accident that the demigods such as Jesus were supposedly born around December 21st. The winter solstice is the day that the promise of light returns each year to our planet. The weeks surrounding the winter solstice have been celebrated for thousands of years, long before the birth of Christ, by cultures all over the world. Regardless of religious, pagan or traditional beliefs this time of year has always been filled with gratitude, joy and celebration. It is a time that celebrates abundance and promises hope for the future. It is a celebration of prosperity, love and light.
The Christmas season is not just for Christians but for people of all races, creeds and beliefs to celebrate the harvest, celebrate life’s bounty, celebrate love and yes, celebrate the return of light and hope that accompanies it. The return of light is recognized with many names and rituals, all of which are beautiful and inspiring. Regardless of the tradition they all deserve recognition and celebration.
To all of my friends and family around the world I wish you Happy Holidays!
For more information about the true history of Christmas visit the History Channel at http://www.history.com/topics/christmas
For more details on the story of Jesus check out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZgT1SRcrKE
2 thoughts on “Christmas and Other Pagan Rituals”
Love this post! So appropriate for the theme I have chosen for Agape Toastmasters this Saturday– “Tis the Season. . .” Yes, this is indeed the Season for all that you wrote about so beautifully in this post.
Thank you, well written and timely.