Ok, we all know about the holiday season, and of course, Christmas. But are the traditions and actual celebrations of the Christmas spirit and traditional ways so “traditional?” a couple stats on the history of the biggest holiday of the year show open our eyes to the “true Christmas.”
- Christmas was once a moveable feast celebrated at many different times during the year. The choice of December 25, was made by Pope Julius I, in the 4th century A.D., because this coincided with the pagan rituals of Winter Solstice, or Return of the Sun. The intent was to replace the pagan celebration with the Christian one.
- According to historical accounts, the first Christmas in the Philippines was celebrated 200 years before Ferdinand Magellan discovered the country for the western world, likely between the years 1280 and 1320 AD.
- In England, they became popular after Queen Victoria’s husband Albert, who came from Germany, made a tree part of the celebrations at Windsor Castle. In the United States, the earliest known mention of a Christmas tree is in the diary of a German who settled in Pennsylvania. (Seems a bit backwards; taking the tree
- from nature and putting it inside? Some have it completely backwards: putting decorations outside and bringing the tree in!)
- Historians have traced some of the current traditions surrounding Father Christmas, or Santa Claus, back to ancient Celtic roots. Father Christmas’s elves are the modernization of the “Nature folk” of the Pagan religions; his reindeer are associated with the “Horned God,” which was one of the Pagan deities.
Some of these may or may not bring the idea or Spirit of Christmas into light; not to doubt beliefs or anything, but it maybe puts Christmas into a new perception.
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Have a wonderful New Year!